Remote energy management

Energy monitoring as a “hosted” service: this is my choice!

Building energy management

 Yesterday, very few commercial buildings had a building energy management system implemented, even less a system actually used regularly by the facility manager. Tomorrow this will become common place, if not mandatory, even for small size buildings.

The drivers behind this trend are known:

  • improve the bottom line often requires to reduce the energy bill
  • get voluntary labels such as LEED, BREEAM, HQE/BBC
  • new regulations will de facto imply such system implementation

To meet those requirements, solutions do exist and leverage existing technologies:

  • meters of all kind: electricity, water, gas – main or sub-meters, smart or basic
  • networking: cables, gateways, wireless, etc.
  • server and associated data base
  • energy management software

But I believe the challenge is huge to get this implemented in each and every building, in a cost effective manner.

In fact it is unlikely to happen unless a change of paradigm takes place: switch from on-site solutions to online energy management.

For a managed service solution, often called “hosted”, the on-site metering infrastructure is the same. The main change for the infrastructure is the server replacement by a basic, low cost gateway which will “push” all energy consumption data to the service provider servers, through Internet. Then those data will be safely stored and processed by the service provider and the facility manager will access his dashboards and reports through his browser, from anywhere.

In short, I can see that the “hosted” building energy management solution provides the same features than an “on-site” system: energy dashboards and reports enabling energy savings and energy reporting.

In addition, even control functions could be triggered remotely through hosted solutions.

So, why does it change the game?

From my analysis, the key online energy management benefits compared to on-site solutions are:

  • Reduced investment costs
  • Energy data safely managed and stored through proved procedures
  • Multi-site solution by nature
  • No in-house and on-site competencies needed for energy management and IT management
  • Regular software upgrade, transparently
  • comprehensive functions and dashboards, even for small buildings

So, ready to go for managed services or still reluctant?

Laurent Bloch


  • This article gives a good suggestion. Not only remote monitoring and control of energy and energy management, even expert implementation of the energy saving practices can be done from remote in future. Energy Management experts can operate together as a team and offer their services for a number of buildings or sites simultaneously.

  • Yes, nobody can get away utilization of Energy, and Manging itcan be done remotely with advent of Building Management Systems, Electronic controllers, computerize system and Power quality solutions.

  • Remote monitoring and control are possible. But what is the need and benefit of remote operation?

    Within the building or the building complex a number of sections in the electrical system will have to be provided with tele-metering system and the corresponding branch will also have the automated or remote controlled switchgear. This will come to a hub within the building and from there it would have to be transmitted thro internet.

    Why should not the control decision be implemented at the hub computer or microprocessor? What is the advantage of taking it elsewhere? Do we have to some gimmick just because it is possible even if there is no tangible benefit?

  • I quite agree with Bhavani, that managing building can sometimes be very complex. But on the other side, more and more companies are migrating to remote control. Whethet it is for simple operations of for such complex things like energy management… The current trend is to move into more intelligent buildings..

  • Hello Guru, what entice you to post an article. This article was extremely interesting, especially since I was searching for thoughts on this subject last Thursday.

  • May i add that more and more factories are now following the trend. Intelligent buildings are no more fancy or luxury. They are now becoming the standard of the the modern industries..

Leave a Comment