Possible Ways of Reducing Energy Consumption in Smart City
If you’re a resident of a smart city, you’ve probably noticed that energy consumption is high and there is a necessity to cut energy use. Even though renewable energy sources are intermittent, the average person’s consumption of energy resources is still high. The use of intelligent meters, in turn, can help you with energy savings. In the following article, there are some simple ways how you can reduce energy consumption in a smart city. Read on to learn how you can use these ways to save energy and money in the long run.
How Can IoT Technology Help Increase Energy Efficiency?
One of the most effective ways to reduce power usage in a smart city is to use the Internet of Things (IoT). This and other technologies working based on innovative ways can be used to control energy transition remotely, turn on street lights automatically and manage temperature and pressure in smart buildings. These smart technologies are also capable of predicting peak usage times and reducing CO2 emissions associated with meter readings. With IoT, building managers can optimize energy consumption and automate operations, resulting in significant energy saving.
The implementation of connected technologies in energy management has many benefits, including increased efficiency, energy-saving, and healthier life. Smart grids, having a central role in public utilities management, can help improve the efficiency of power delivery, allowing for faster restoration of power after a major storm, which can be a frequent occurrence, especially in mountainous cities. In addition, energy-efficient smart city projects can help integrate renewable energy resources into a smart grid that can reduce energy bills. The smart grid is the backbone of a smart city, so it’s essential to its success.
Smart cities can lower energy consumption by monitoring a variety of factors, from greenhouse gas emissions to street lighting and traffic flow. Combined with smart infrastructure, IoT-based smart meters can significantly improve the quality of life for city dwellers. The benefits of smart metering in IoT technology for cities are numerous. For instance, city-wide predictive analytics of temperature could be used to cut power usage. This could be very beneficial for both the city’s environmental impact and its residents. By incorporating smart city technology into the public and private sector of city infrastructure, smart cities can improve the quality of life and comfort. So, it’s no wonder that many cities are aiming to become smarter, reduce global carbon emissions, and achieve energy consumption reduction. With the help of innovative technology such Internet of Things (IoT), smart cities are becoming a reality, and in the future will only grow more powerful with demand response incentives, and smart energy systems, and benefit the world’s population.
Easiest Ways of Improving Energy Management in Smart Cities
The drive behind smart cities is to reduce their carbon footprint, and emissions from power plants, and make city life more comfortable and efficient. Improving energy efficiency and waste management, for example, will help cut back on the number of carbon emissions generated. Other smart city initiatives include charging stations for electric cars and better traffic conditions. These innovations are just some of the ways smart cities can use to go green and switch to smart power usage.
The current state of the environment with climate change, an increasing number of power plants, greenhouse gases, poor air quality, and constant population growth highlight the need for a new approach to urban areas development, taking ecological principles into account to address key challenges. Urban planning should aim to create conditions for energy efficiency in various types of inhabited zones and commercial buildings while minimizing the costs of energy transportation and water management. Enhancing energy efficiency is a huge potential for cities, more than half of which are underutilized and whose untapped potential can be exploited through smart city concepts and urban planning. To do this, criteria and standards for energy efficiency must be developed for urban plans, as well as economic and market instruments for assessing the most energy-efficient appliances, and residential and business areas.
With the help of connected devices such as environmental sensors, wireless sensor networks, smart controls, and smart grids, city authorities and users can make informed decisions about how best to manage global energy use. The use of such new forms of technologies can also help cities reduce greenhouse gases emissions by improving traffic flow and eliminating traffic jams, which are the main source of emissions in smart cities. Moreover, by utilizing data collected from various sources, smart city planning can decrease power consumption in buildings with predictive analytics and smart controls.
Smart city planning can also improve efficiency and reduce electricity consumption by implementing new projects, smart social services, policies, and practices. For example, cities and countries with low fuel prices could increase them to at least $1.6 per liter. Such a fuel price would help the cities transition to energy-efficient smart cities with lower levels of greenhouse gas emissions, increased usage of renewable energy, and better air quality. Such a global initiative is aimed at helping smart city governments and businesses develop more efficient cities with better usage of urban energy, and potential for economic growth.
The utility sector can play an important role in advancing the people-centered, smart city goals. By helping meet the needs of residents and businesses, utilities are serving the economy, mobility, health, and government domains. In the future, utilities will be the driving force behind a smart city’s development. By promoting a lower price for renewable energy, utilities can improve the quality of life of people in smart cities and help achieve less power consumption.
One approach that could be implemented in a smart city is introducing taxes on fossil fuels. These are relatively low-cost ways to discourage the use of cars based on gas, and can also be used as a means of encouraging the efficient operation of vehicles in smart cities or switching to electric cars. In fact, 74% of citizens believe that better energy information will help them with energy savings. But how can this work in a smart city? One solution is to implement differentiated tax stickers for different vehicle classes based on the carbon footprint they leave.
Another option is to tax encourage the usage of electric vehicles (EV). According to collected data, this business model integrated into smart cities can improve collaboration among stakeholders involved in smart city management (Ferreira, Monteiro, Afonso & Silva, 2011). By imposing a fuel tax, EVs can be easily integrated into the smart city as a cheaper and eco-friendly technology. A successful EV policy is dependent on collaboration between stakeholders, so it is important to take joint action. However, there are many other strategies that cities can take to decrease energy consumption and promote a healthy environment. Moreover, strict building codes and retrofitting strategies for buildings would help reduce energy use in the long term.
In connected smart cities, the use of IoT and smart lighting technologies will help cities improve their urban energy management and safety. With a large demand for more efficient lighting in smart cities, smart street lighting can become the cornerstone of a smart city.
The city of Chicago, which in recent years launched a smart lighting pilot program, is already seeing big energy savings. Its smart lighting initiative is expected to save the city $100 million over ten years (Chicago Smart Lighting Program, 2022). Besides saving money on energy, the program will create a revenue stream for the city, since it will generate a lot of data and can be monetized.
By using LED lights, smart cities can improve energy management and resource allocation. Smart street light bulbs will enable automated control and scheduling based on location. One example of smart street lighting is motion-activated street lights, which automatically turn off when a street is empty. Smart lighting can also improve public safety, reduce energy costs, and improve traffic flow. Smart lampposts can also improve security and reduce electricity bills. The city of Nice, France, is currently undergoing a trial project to test the technology of smart street lighting in public places (“Nice Smart City”, 2022). By controlling the intensity of street lighting via sensors and remote operation, smart lampposts will automatically adjust their lighting levels, based on real-time weather conditions, saving energy for the cities.
Smart Water Metering
The introduction of smart water metering using IoT is one of the easiest methods of incorporating smart technology into city planning. It involves installing meters in smart buildings, which monitor cold water and hot water usage. The implementation of smart water meters has many benefits. For example, the city of San Francisco is implementing automated water meters in 96% of water accounts (Brears, 2018). These smart devices transmit hourly water consumption data to the utility billing system. The data from the meters identifies every cubic foot of water used for one hour or 28 liters (Brears, 2018). This information allows account holders to track water use more easily and find leaks more easily. Additionally, they can download detailed water usage data and learn how to conserve it. Such integration of water meters into smart grids can be extremely helpful for energy optimization.
Electricity Consumption Management
While there are many concepts for smart cities, implementing some of them is the simplest and cheapest way to save money. To reduce the consumption of electricity in smart buildings, it is necessary for cities to connect meters to wireless sensor networks and smart grids within the city. IoT devices will detect excessive power usage and respond to commands to optimize energy consumption, creating a system of “smart energy”. 5G wireless technology or LoRaWAN can be deployed to transmit data efficiently and cloud technology can be used to securely store the information.
The researchers developed mathematical models to determine how this technology could help improve energy control in smart cities. They compared their proposed model to the existing solutions and came up with the optimal solution. One of the most common challenges of energy consumption in cities is handling the extra demand from electric cars. In order to cope with this problem, smart cities should implement energy efficiency schemes and demand response incentives to have less energy demand. EVs could even feedback their electricity into the grid during peak demand (Ferreira, Monteiro, Afonso & Silva, 2011). Moreover, there are new vehicle-to-grid innovations that can help cities reduce the demand for electricity from these vehicles.
Smart Buildings Technology
Buildings need to be able to manage energy costs as well as the environmental impact of their operation. Energy and climate sensors can help with this and with achieving “smart energy” status. Smart building technologies can improve working efficiency and employee well-being, as well as compliance with government health and safety regulations. In addition to helping with energy and climate control, smart buildings also save money.
The city of Orlando, Florida, has invested $20 million in smart city deployments (Harvard Business Review, 2016). They are using the data generated by smart buildings to determine energy cost savings. These buildings can learn their occupants’ energy usage patterns and automatically adjust their energy use based on their occupancy and equipment needs. With smart energy sensors, cities can reduce their carbon footprint and use the money saved to fund education and other vital services.
Smart buildings are designed to have multiple systems that do their jobs independently but work in sync. Using the Internet of Things, smart buildings can connect and communicate with each other through the smart grid. They can also use sensors to regulate specific areas within buildings. As a result, smart buildings can help to use energy in a more efficient way and help keep up with the environmentally friendly trend.
One of the first steps in transforming cities into smart ones is to increase renewable energy production. Renewable energy sources such as solar and wind can provide a large portion of the city’s energy needs, so these renewables should be used to power buildings. Utility companies play a key role in this transformation, but they should also be aware of the benefits of renewable energy. By focusing on renewable energy as a way to meet the demands of a smart city, utilities can better engage with customers and make a greater impact on the environment.
Renewable sources can significantly reduce power waste. The main thing here for cities or publicly operated companies is to find reliable solar installers and providers. Large quantities of solar products currently present on the market do not fulfill all the demands of energy-saving.
Connected cars will revolutionize the way we live. With the help of AI and cloud-based data, these vehicles can be programmed to decrease energy consumption. Human drivers tend to use brakes and accelerators more than they should, resulting in more fuel usage than they need. Autonomous vehicles can cut energy consumption by up to 90 percent, and reduced fuel consumption reduces carbon emissions. Besides, connected cities are not just about reducing energy consumption, but improving traffic flow and quality of life as well.
With the help of connectivity, connected cars can access information from city infrastructure, which improves the efficiency of the entire transport system. Access to weather warnings, road conditions, and traffic updates will decrease fuel consumption. Vehicles equipped with connected parking services will save fuel and energy by reducing traffic circling, resulting in fewer trips and fewer emissions. It will be a great step towards smart energy from the side of such a largely used thing as cars.
With the aim of having less energy consumption in buildings and in the cities, it would be reasonable to turn to energy-efficient appliances. These include smart air conditioners, energy-efficient windows, programmable or smart thermostat systems, and other energy-efficient products you can implement in smart homes to reduce total energy consumption. When you purchase energy-efficient products, you make sure that your energy waste is not higher than at least average. Energy supply is a complex process and to make it optimized, you will have to undergo a long way of changes. At the same time, it is important to understand that the level of energy consumed will not be ideal even if you will use only LED bulbs instead of incandescent bulbs, smart thermostat and air conditioner devices, and natural light during the day. It is time to admit that even choosing south-facing windows will not allow you to give up using artificial lighting.
Cooling and heating costs usually result in quite a considerable amount of money. You can think that it is some phantom energy loss, but in order to produce hot air or cold air, your air conditioning system or baseboard heaters need to burn a lot of energy. First of all, of course, single-pane windows call for adding insulation but most people don’t use it and keep burning energy for heating, while windows and doors attributing to heat loss. Then, you get a terrifying electricity bill and start thinking that fresh air or a warm room are not priorities anymore. Besides, with the overusing AC devices, you will end up having the air dry both in colder and warmer months. However, there is a way out, and a reasonable one – start using smart appliances.
Using IoT to monitor energy usage in a building can help cut thermal energy demand and improve efficiency, which will result in significant power savings. Buildings account for a large percentage of energy consumption and have more energy waste than factories sometimes. The average household usually has air conditioning to survive during the hot summer days, a programmable thermostat, a smart oven to reduce cooking time, and a dishwasher as nobody likes washing dishes. And these are only kitchen appliances, which already contribute to electricity use. More energy leads to a huge impact on the environment, higher carbon dioxide levels, and the world’s energy shortage. We have energy awareness month yearly to remind ourselves about global warming and mindful power consumption but having accessible smart devices at home and at work will help no less. We are telling you all this as you should stay informed about the ways to reduce your energy consumption, saving tips, and benefits of using less energy.
Smart Grids Implementation
A smart city consists of a complex system of interdependent power systems. With the help of a smart grid, a city can increase its hosting capacity for renewable energy sources such as solar and wind energy, electric cars, and heat pumps. In addition, smart grids can be used to facilitate energy markets, improve customer service, and improve energy distribution technology. With advances in wireless technology, smart cities can benefit from a multitude of smart grid applications.
These systems can be used in a variety of settings, from small homes to large commercial buildings. The use of data analytics enables utilities to forecast demand and bill more accurately. The use of data analytics enables utilities to better manage and monitor electricity costs. With the development of smart grids, electric companies can make their power systems more efficient. For example, with smart energy analytics, businesses can save on lighting, heating, and cooling. Smart grids are especially vital in developing countries during the process of deploying new power infrastructure.
How can TEKTELIC Help Optimize Energy Use?
TEKTELIC has a variety of energy optimization solutions that can help businesses and cities decrease energy consumption and costs. Our power optimization solutions can help businesses improve power efficiency, reduce wastage, and save money on power bills. We offer a variety of services to help businesses and cities optimize their energy use, including auditing, consulting, and training.
For example, TEKTELIC has KONA Micro IoT Gateway, which is perfectly suitable for connecting sensors within a residential or commercial building. This gateway is configured with an internal 3G/4G modem and a built-in battery backup allowing for the standby mode, which makes it a reliable choice for utility companies since it will continue working and gather data for 4 more hours even if the main site is out of power. Standby power ensures that monitoring will not suddenly shut down and data will continue gathering. Besides, it can reduce the cost of setup with plug-n-play installation using a custom provisioned factory image.
The other device TEKTELIC can offer is KONA Macro IoT Gateway, which is ideal for outdoor deployments. The gateway can connect sensors responsible for street lighting, water management, and smart parking systems. It has a variety of deployment options, this gateway can be deployed at utility poles, lamp posts, towers, roofs, or walls. Additionally, KONA Macro IoT Gateway is a cost-effective solution since it works with low power consumption and passive cooling. An integrated band-pass filter, in turn, ensure perfect out-of-band rejection of interference from other networks such as Cellular and Paging.
TEKTELIC designs and manufactures reliable devices for the energy sector. We provide our customers with products that are backed by our quality guarantee and customer service team. Our products are designed to meet the needs of businesses in the energy sector, and we offer a variety of options to choose from. What is more, our devices use less energy than many similar sensors on the market as some devices pull small amounts even when turned off or converted to energy-saving mode. All the devices you order from TEKTELIC will arrive properly sealed, so you can be 100% sure they are not damaged, do not have dirty filters, and will consume only promised amount of energy (not more). Our team of experts can work with businesses to identify opportunities for energy savings and develop customized solutions to meet their needs.
Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your business or city optimize its use of energy!
1. Brears, R. (2018). Smart Water, Smart Metering. Retrieved 18 April 2022, from https://medium.com