Grundfos: Pumping sustainability

Grundfos

Grundfos is a trendsetter in developing energy-efficient water technologies that help make the planet cleaner and greener. Its high-efficiency pump and motor technology reduces the average pump’s energy consumption by as much as 60 per cent. In an interaction with Dibyendu RoyChowdhury, Mahathi Parashuram, Head – Public Affairs and Marketing, Grundfos Pumps India Pvt Ltd, talks about the benefits of energy and water conservation — and their importance in the green construction.

How do pumps play a noteworthy role in accomplishing greater indoor environmental quality and energy efficiency, the criteria for green buildings?

Pumps play an important role in green buildings by enhancing sustainability standards in order to keep energy consumption low. Use of energy-efficient pumps can save 4 per cent of the world’s electricity consumption, which is equal to the residential electricity consumption of one billion people.

Heat pumps are one way to reduce the amount of energy used in cooling and heating while still maintaining a comfortable and a quality environment. The use of heat recovery ventilators and geothermal heat pump technology can save up to 40 per cent energy. By using minimum energy, water and natural resources than a conventional building it lowers wastage and offers a healthier living environment.

Grundfos is known world over for setting high standards of innovative and sustainable solutions. Grundfos’ high-efficiency pump and motor technology reduces the average pump’s energy consumption by as much as 60 per cent — protecting the environment and simultaneously cutting costs.

India ranks three among the most active countries in green building projects. What are your strategies to support growth in this sector?
With the growing focus on sustainable development, the green building movement in the country is gaining momentum. The concept of green building is also becoming popular due to its benefits; namely, cost savings during its life cycle.
Grundfos is promoting the green building concept by helping Indian industries and corporate save both energy and water not only through its highly energy-efficient products but also through its energy and water audits.
The company also contributes towards energy and water conservation by reducing its own impact on the environment. Grundfos headquarters in Chennai is India’s first gold-rated green building in India and was later elevated to LEED EB Platinum Certification by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) in 2013 based on some of the facility’s key sustainability features, such as high energy efficiency levels with 100 per cent recycling of the sewage, rainwater harvesting and with solar collectors and photovoltaics.

The rising awareness of global warming and climate change issues and the knowledge that green building techniques lead to a lower level of greenhouse gas emissions are helping grow green building construction. What are the other green building activities and trends?
Green buildings are on a rise. As per the industry reports, the green building industry in India will grow by 20 per cent by 2018 driven largely by environmental regulations and demand for healthier neighbourhoods.
The green building movement is booming as a result of the progressive plans to increase access to electricity, the economic growth projections and rapid urbanization.
As per a report by Dodge Data & Analytics, high-rise residential, new communities and mixed-use development are expected to be the top three sectors for the growth of green buildings in India. The state governments are also offering incentives which are attracting developers enhance their green residential portfolio.
The corporate houses are now appreciative of the lower cost of operation and energy-saving feature of green buildings which is again enhancing the green building momentum in the country. The increasing awareness and consciousness towards green buildings has resulted in creating new green employment opportunities. The consistent efforts from the government and industry over the past decade have placed India in a lead position in the global green building movement.

India has three primary rating systems, including GRIHA and IGBC. Grundfos headquarters in Chennai is India’s first gold-rated green building under LEED certification. How important are these ratings systems? Do they have a right approach to sustainability?

As buildings have extensive direct and indirect impacts on the environment, the green ratings benchmark the performance of the building in terms of sustainability. Right from the energy consumption, water consumption, indoor air quality and so forth are monitored by the rating systems which are aimed at moderating the impact of buildings on the natural environment through sustainable design.

The rating system is important as it paves the way to understand where the building stands, improves the existing performance of the building and ultimately saves on the operational costs.

Ground-source heat pumps are one way to reduce the amount of energy used in cooling and heating while still maintaining a comfortable home. Where does Grundfos stand in adopting those technologies?

The role of the heat pump is to attract heat from the air, earth, well water or pond water and use that energy to heat or cool a green building. Grundfos contributes to this, with the excellent concept of double efficiency: a hydraulic unit consisting of a pump housing with built-in functionality combined with a high-efficiency circulator.

What are the challenges to build a green building, and how can we overcome them?
The key challenge for the rise of green buildings is the lack of information and incorrect consumer perception. It is generally believed that green buildings cost more typically 3-5 per cent higher when compared to a conventional building and have long gestation periods. To meet this there is a need to create awareness of the benefits aligned with green buildings, material and the energy-efficient technologies and also emphasised that the incremental costs are recovered within 3-4 years resulting in substantial reduction in operational costs.
The sourcing of materials for green buildings is also a hurdle sometimes. However, as the demand for green building phenomenon is nurturing in India, the industry of green materials and services is also developing simultaneously.

Grundfos India was one of the sponsors of the Green Building Congress 2015. What role is Grundfos playing in promoting or developing green buildings in India?
Grundfos has always been a trendsetter in developing energy-efficient water technologies that help make the planet cleaner and greener. Grundfos is fostering green buildings by highlighting on the benefits of energy and water conservation. The company also assists manufacturing plants through its energy audits and suggests intelligent solutions that can enhance energy efficiency as per the requirement or the challenges faced by the company.

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