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Decarbonizing Swiss industrial sectors by process integration, electrification, and traditional energy efficiency measures

Panel: 4. Technology, products and systems

This is a peer-reviewed paper.

M. Jibran S. Zuberi, University of Geneva, Switzerland
Navdeep Bhadbhade, University of Geneva, Switzerland
Martin K. Patel, University of Geneva, Switzerland
Anna Sophia Wallerand, EPFL, Switzerland
Francois Marechal, EPFL, Switzerland
Cordin Arpagaus, NTB University of Applied Sciences of Technology, Buchs, Institute for Energy Systems, Switzerland
Stefan Bertsch, NTB University of Applied Sciences of Technology, Buchs, Institute for Energy Systems, Switzerland
Beat Wellig, HSLU, Switzerland


The Paris Agreement 2015 is a historic initiative taken by the global community to fight against climate change and steer the world towards clean energy transition and deep decarbonization. Switzerland has developed the Energy Strategy 2050 which is a strategic policy package for realizing the transition towards a low-carbon economy. Energy efficiency (EE) is one of the strategy’s major pillars.

Although several steps to incentivize EE improvement in the industry have been taken in Switzerland, the size of the EE gap that currently exists in its high-value-added manufacturing sector is largely unknown majorly due to the complexity of the sectors and lack of data. Moreover, since industrial technologies are advancing rapidly, it is essential to evaluate the potential wide-scale application of emerging technologies and best practices in the industry. To this end, this study explores the techno-economic final energy and CO2 saving potentials in the Swiss industry in the short-tomedium term at the level of individual sectors and for crosscutting technologies.

In total, the studied EE measures correspond to an economic final energy savings potential of 23 PJ per year (19 % of the final energy demand in the Swiss industry; potential dominated by process heat integration measures) if total investments are considered. If additionality is accounted for, then the total economic potential increases from 19 % to 21 %. The estimated thermal energy savings, in addition to the savings from measures exclusively related to CO2 mitigation, are equivalent to a potential CO2 abatement of 1.3 Mt CO2 p.a. (34 % of the fossil-based CO2 inventory in Swiss industry). This work is a contribution to the so far limited international literature on economic EE measures applicable to high value-added and heterogeneous manufacturing sectors and is meant to inform decision-makers.

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Download this presentation as pdf: 4-108-20_Zuberi_pre.pdf

Download this paper as pdf: 4-108-20_Zuberi.pdf