Optimize your operations for a sustainable future

2 min read published on December 9 2021

In November 2021, COP26 held in Glasgow, UK, set reducing emissions as one of its focus points. At the same time, the European Green Deal is setting clear targets for the European countries – net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

If the Green Deal succeeds, it will transform every aspect of the European economies from energy generation to food consumption, transportation, manufacturing, and construction. For the process industry, this means stricter emissions targets, more reporting to government bodies and binding compliance with legal norms and regulations.

How are these ambitious goals going to be achieved?

Three levels of change

End-to-end transparency

Every company should prioritize setting up tracking, reporting, and emissions validation solutions to establish all factors of influence and implement proper housekeeping. Increasing the information flow back and forth to the corporate centers will help management take ownership of the plant’s environmental liability.

Process Optimization

There is clear evidence in the broad process industry that units operating automatically, e.g., through the application of advanced process control (APC) or real-time optimization (RTO) technology, can become up to 10% more efficient. By automatically calculating product quality and adjusting key process parameters, APC can reduce variations, minimize feedstock waste and decreases emissions.

Digital strategies allow companies to address changes in the environment and adapt quicker than ever. With carbon pricing available, optimizers can calculate optimal economic rates for plants, weighing in throughput, feedstock cost, and emissions. By now, APC and RTO technologies are fully mature and are a must-have for companies to remain competitive.

Process Redesign

Regardless of how much it is optimized, every plant or unit will reach a level of emissions inherent to the way the process was designed. Certain parts or the entire process will need to be rethought to reduce the environmental impact further. Some of these innovations are known today and piloted; others are ongoing research.

How can IPCOS help?

By providing you with access to measured and calculated data, IPCOS will help you develop a birds-eye-view of the actual environmental impact of your company, from plant to corporate level. We can then develop a roadmap to achieve the necessary targets, step by step. Finally, we will help you ensure that your company is compliant with all environmental legislation – current and future.

The path to goal zero emissions is challenging. However, we should start the efforts now, create transparency, and grab the low hanging fruit to continue further. Apply advanced optimization technology where it makes sense. And prepare for complete process redesigns for the next capital cycle.