By Denise Bechdel, CEA, REM, REPA, REP

Electrical expenses.Incorporating energy management best practices most often leads to sustained savings, continual energy performance improvement, and controlled costs. A couple of tools to help you get there include ISO 50001 and Superior Energy Performance (SEP).

ISO 50001 is a fairly new international standard for energy management that provides a framework to effectively manage and improve energy performance with the goal of turning energy savings into sustainable gains. Implementation and compliance with ISO 50001 helps provide education to employees and engages them to identify energy-saving opportunities. The Superior Energy Performance (SEP) program certifies industrial facilities that implement ISO 50001, comply with the energy management system standard, achieve improved energy performance, and verified energy savings.

By managing energy with a systematic approach, a manufacturing company is able to reduce energy costs; continually improve energy performance; improve corporate image; reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions; and align energy management with other business systems. The first step down the path of energy management includes conducting a gap analysis or assessments by trained energy practitioners. PennTap, the technical assistance program through Penn State, offers Certified Practitioners in Industrial Energy Management Systems and Certified SEP Performance Verifiers who can conduct an analysis and assist in creating a customized energy management system.

Denise Bechdel is the Energy and Environmental Team Lead for PennTAP and can be reached at 814.867.1539 or


Side Note: NWIRC will offer a no-cost program featuring PennTAP, “Saving Money Through Energy Management Systems”, on November 8, 2016 from 1:00-4:00pm at the Clarion SBDC. The program will focus on using powerful tools, ISO 50001 and SEP, to reduce energy usage and environmental footprint. PennTAP will review the steps and requirements for certification under each system. Click here for more information and register.