Bord Gáis Energy Interview: Gavan Duffy

08 Jan 2018 | 10.57 am

Bord Gáis Energy Interview: Gavan Duffy

How Allergan works with Bord Gáis Energy to improve energy sustainability

08 Jan 2018 | 10.57 am

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IN THIS SERIES, BORD GÁIS ENERGY IS SHARING DETAILS ON SOME OF ITS SME CUSTOMERS AND THEIR BUSINESS SUCCESSES. THIS MONTH, WE FEATURE GAVAN DUFFY, ENERGY AND SUSTAINABILITY SPECIALIST WITH  ALLERGAN.

How did you get started in the industry?

I studied Engineering at Dundalk Institute of Technology, then I went on to study Pharmaceutical Science at the Institute of Technology Tallaght. After seeing an ad online for an energy engineer with Forest Laboratories/Allergan, I decided to apply. It was my first real job after college and I’ve been with the company ever since.

Have you seen much change in the industry?

There has been a continued surge in new technology in the sector, especially upgraded technology in LED lighting. A lot of companies are also optimising their heating control systems. Technology has been constantly improving.

What’s different about the pharmaceutical sector?

Energy consumption is a significant cost for pharmaceutical plants. These plants have to maintain room pressures and humidity levels, while still ensuring that the equipment is maintained and operating at an efficient level that will lower energy targets.

Our annual and quarterly energy meetings with senior corporate management allows us to discuss energy targets and progress on energy reduction action plans. Monthly meetings with the energy genius champions across the corporation focus on project and awareness support in each site. There is also local support from energy suppliers and government bodies.

What advice would you give to someone starting off in the industry?

  • Develop an energy policy and push yourself to meet higher targets. Work on an awareness programme. On average, this can result in 2-3% in annual savings, with little or no capital expenditure.
  • Develop an energy action plan and conduct an energy audit. Develop relationships with the people supplying your gas, electricity and those maintaining your equipment. They can usually suggest ways to improve the site and make it more efficient.
  • Adopt ISO 50001 and implement it into your environment.

How important is energy efficiency for your business?

It’s important to ensure all project and annual energy usage costs come in under budget. Monitoring costs helps to develop future budgets that ensure job growth and cost benefits to the company.

Energy efficiency is on a par with energy cost savings. We have a 2020 target to reduce our sites’ energy consumption by 20%, and the key to this being successful is developing and implementing an energy-efficiency programme for the significant energy users on site.

In your business, how do you ensure energy efficiency?

We implement changes and upgrades to existing equipment and have numerous optimisation projects underway to ensure equipment runs more efficiently than when first installed. We’ve also tried to improve our procurement process, to ensure all major projects develop an energy-efficient design format.

How has Bord Gáis Energy helped with this?

Bord Gáis Energy, through the Energy Efficiency Obligation Scheme, ongoing site support through awareness days, and energy monitoring for KPIs, have played a vital role in ensuring we operate as efficiently as we can. They encourage energy-efficiency programmes and are always on hand to help optimise our energy consumption on site.

See www.allergan.ie for more information.

For expert tips and advice on growing your own business, visit www.bgebusinesshub.ie

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