Since 2018, young employees have been qualifying as Energy Scouts in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Greece, and Hungary. They analyze and optimize energy and resource consumption in their companies, which saves costs and protects the climate and the environment at the same time.
Energy Scouts come from different sectors, around two thirds of all industries are represented. The greatest interest comes from automotive suppliers and the food and beverage industry – two sectors with consumers who place high demands on the products. In 2020, there is a growing interest of companies from the construction and service sector to qualify Energy Scouts.
In principle, the training is open to all employees of companies under the age of 35, regardless of whether one is a senior supply engineer in a baby food factory, an exhibition maker for a children’s knowledge museum or a logistics specialist in a supermarket chain. Often the participants bring technical knowledge or even have a project idea in mind, which they refine during the five-day training and then implement in a team in the company.
By far the most frequently pursued practical projects arise in the fields of lighting and compressed air systems. In most cases, conventional lighting is converted to LEDs, micro-leaks in the compressed air system are located and eliminated or the control of compressors is optimized. In the past year, an extraordinary number of water projects have started, from rainwater use for cooling to flow restrictors on taps. For 2020, there is a high level of interest in photovoltaics, especially in Bulgaria and Greece.
The greatest potential for savings has so far been realized in two lighting projects, with a logistics center and a large workshop being converted to energy-saving LED lighting. Another project has also become large, in which a simple strip curtain significantly improves the cooling of food. This has been implemented in all (over 200) branches of the company due to the electricity savings achieved. Many projects not only save energy and resources, but also increase work safety, for example, such as motion detectors for lighting or driver training for forklifts.
The projects of the Energy Scouts 2020 started under difficult circumstances due to corona, but again cover exciting topics – such as the inclusion of artificial intelligence in the waste prevention of a supermarket chain in the Czech Republic. We will be reporting in detail on the innovations of the Energy Scouts 2020 from autumn onwards.