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Manufacturers Must Diversify Energy Models to Resolve Resilience Issues, Report Finds


According to Aggreko, manufacturers’ energy supply is in a precarious position and potential site blackouts, connection delays and rising grid fees are compounding these troubles. As relief packages for businesses’ energy bills across multiple European countries finish in 2024 and uncertainty surrounding the grids future capacity for renewables continues, the sector finds itself tackling both short-term volatility and long-term insecurity.

With supply instability and grid shortfalls continuing to prove challenges to European manufacturers, a new report is highlighting solutions to navigate an uncertain energy market, alleviate regulatory pressures and avoid downtime from resilience issues.

As rising costs resulting from Europe’s energy crisis begin to settle, the report, titled Race to Resilience, indicates that ongoing energy stability remains a major concern for energy intense manufacturers.

From this, the report explores how facilities can secure enough power both now, and in the future, highlighting a revised approach to decentralised energy as the route capable of improving security of supply, reducing transmission losses and lowering carbon emissions.

Chris Rason, Managing Director, Aggreko Energy Services, comments: “European manufacturers’ energy supply instability has made clear the need to devolve energy models away from the grid. And while most sites will have some form of power generation, new impetus on protecting critical processes and improving on-site efficiency is needed to tackle the sectors energy struggles.

“Aggreko’s Race to Resilience report therefore aims to bridge the gap between today’s manufacturing challenges of exponential energy demand and supply disruptions, with tomorrow’s objectives of security and sustainability.”

The report gives prominence to microgrids, gas-powered generators, combined heat and power, and energy storage as bridging solutions. One scenario highlighted in the report is a facility which needed greener on-site generation for intensive manufacturing processes and support while waiting for a grid connection. In response, Aggreko provided 1.43Mwe over 26 weeks via a natural gas set with 400/11kV transformer, gas booster system and purpose-built extended exhaust flue – allowing the site to continue production unimpeded by market strain.

To give decision-makers a starting point when identifying such models, the report also highlights a series of calculators developed by Aggreko – these include the Hire Vs Buy, Grid Compare and Greener Upgrades calculators.

Chris concluded: “The development of new technologies solutions has opened the possibility of more autonomous and greener energy models across the manufacturing sector. However, as permanent installations prove difficult with supply chain disruption and capex costs, bridging solutions offer a risk-free way to mitigate volatility and put manufacturers on a route to resilience.

“As energy upheaval becomes part and parcel of Europe’s power market, diversified energy models give manufacturers the autonomy to counter current supply pressures, and the dynamism to navigate through unfamiliar terrain. The solutions put forward in Aggreko’s latest report ultimately stand to bridge one of the continents major industries to energy resiliency.”

Manufacturing & Engineering Magazine | The Home of Manufacturing Industry News

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