SSEA provided Bellurgan Precision with a data-driven approach to energy reduction
Manufacturing firm Bellurgan Precision applied for SEAI's Support Scheme for Energy Audits (SSEA) as a means to meet one of their sustainability objectives for 2022-2023, which was an energy audit.
Bellurgan Precision Engineering are a manufacturer of precision machined parts and sub-components for the medical device and aerospace industries. The company was founded in 1978 by Bernard Carroll and has expanded over the years to where we now operate out of a 50,000 Sq ft facility and employ circa 100 people. Bellurgan Precision operates 24/7 shift patterns and have 47 machining centres with a mix of turning and milling capabilities.
Why Bellurgan Precision Decided to Apply for SSEA
Due to a number of factors, external customer requirements, ongoing increases in energy costs and internal company strategic goals, Bellurgan Precision identified a number of sustainability objectives for 2022 & 2023. One of the objectives was to carry out an energy audit of their site so as to establish baselines for energy usage and to identify a register a opportunities for sustainability and cost reduction projects.
The senior management team then attended a sustainability road show where the SSEA (Support Scheme for Energy Audits) process was advertised. Bellurgan Precision applied and were approved for an energy audit to be carried out for the site and undertook this exercise using an external consultant. The audit identified a number of energy improvement and sustainability opportunities and helped to establish energy usage baselines for the site. Installation of Solar panels was identified as the number one opportunity to reduce energy costs onsite.
SSEA in Practice
Opportunity one for Bellurgan Precision as part of the SSEA was to install a 200Kw roof mounted solar array on-site with the goal of delivering 140,000 Kwh’s per annum, which would account for 8% of our overall energy requirement for the site. This project has been implemented in Q1 2023 and already energy cost benefits have been identified.
Opportunity two was to install a heat recovery system on their air compressors that will be used to heat their hot water and offices. This is scheduled to be completed by Q3 2023. This will eliminate the usage of LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas) from the site.
The SSEA scheme gave us the opportunity to apply a data driven approach to energy reduction targets onsite. It ensured we focused on the correct measures in the correct order, that would give us the maximum return on our investments.
The Energy Audit Benefits and Steps Taken
The benefit of undertaking the energy audit was that it provided Bellurgan Precision with a systematic and data driven approach to energy improvement targets and helped them to identify the “big wins” onsite that could be tracked and trends identified from, once baselines had been established. It helped the company move away from an “ad hoc”, “piecemeal” approach to energy reduction to a structured, objective-orientated one.
Previous measures included installation of LED lighting throughout the factory, and also sensors on light switches.
Bellurgan Precision established new baselines for energy use on-site.
The company identified the register of opportunities based on energy reduction and ranked them according to which project would have the biggest impact and highest ROI.
Bellurgan Precision established energy reduction targets and sustainability behaviours that are being targeted for their company site.