Software Supports Sustainability

Sustainability’s priorities are driving new functionality in traditional types of industrial software, as well as development of new packages designed specifically to support sustainability initiatives.

Automation software developers are adding controls for lighting and HVAC as well as energy monitoring, water metering, materials tracking and sustainability dashboard capabilities. Simulation packages help plants envision and move to more sustainable processes and operations.

Asset and maintenance management packages are integrating power monitoring, energy efficiency, utility rates and equipment nameplate information to help asset managers decide when to service equipment, and when it makes economic sense to replace it with new, more efficient units.

Design packages will help engineers calculate and minimize a new product’s environmental footprint, and logistics software will help shippers select the best balance of speed, cost and greenhouse gas emissions.

ERP systems are bringing production and energy information from dispersed facilities together in sustainability dashboards that let managers compare the per-unit-production energy productivities of alternative plants, select the most efficient and guide improvements by promulgating best practices.

Emissions monitoring and documentation packages track emissions and help sustainable plants prove and report compliance to customers, stakeholders and governments.

A new class of sustainability software promises to aggregate comprehensive energy consumption, greenhouse gas emission and waste information from entire supply chains so multinational corporations can calculate and report their environmental footprints.

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