China’s Factory Owners Hunt for Energy Savings

Taryn Sullivan, a consultant who founded Efficiency Exchange in Dongguan in 2010, has developed software to identify inefficiencies. At every factory in China she has visited, Sullivan has spotted energy waste, and she estimates an average potential savings of 13 percent. At Circle Furniture in Guangdong, her firm analyzed the electricity bills. Sullivan figured out that Circle was paying the local utility a monthly fine for drawing more current than needed, which increases the amount of energy lost in transmission. A simple mechanical adjustment resolved the issue. Circle co-owner Lisa Deng says the problem had been driving up electrical costs by 6 percent a month.