Title Energy Management Training for European Plastics Processors
Project Number UK/09/LLP-LdV/TOI-163_230
Project Type Transfer of Innovation
Country UK-United Kingdom
Marketing Text ENERGYWISE Plastics has developed an elearning platform with supporting materials for those working within the European plastics industry to learn and understand how to manage, and reduce, their energy consumption.
The European plastics industry is one of the most important sectors in the EU, with an aggregate production of almost 40 million tonnes, representing a value of some €250 billion and applications in a vast variety of industries. However, the sector is mainly dominated by SMEs who are coming under increasing pressure from low wage economies as well as increases in EU enforced legislation and a rise in the price of energy and materials. The volatility of oil prices, global insecurity and the rapid economic growth of China and India have resulted in testing business conditions for the industry with optimism and confidence at an all time low.
While global demand for plastics materials has continued to grow, profit margins of European producers have suffered due to increased expenses for raw materials and energy. Due to the uncertain global economic climate and market pressures on key customer sectors, the main focus of many processors is process optimisation and cost reduction rather than business expansion.
ENERGYWISE Plastics has developed an elearning platform with training materials for those working with the plastics industry to learn and understand how to manage and reduce their energy consumption. The project uses a ‘blended learning’ approach, offering interactive on-line modules and supporting ‘hard-copy’ resources, focusing on the needs of SMEs.
The content for ENERGYWISE Plastics has been adapted from materials and resources developed in the European funded project RECIPE (Reduced Energy Consumption in Plastics Engineering, EIE/04/153/S07.38646), a 3-year project to provide the European plastics processing industry with the tools needed to reduce their energy consumption through the implementation of best practice and the introduction of new technologies.
A consortium was drawn together of European RTOs bringing together a wealth of expertise and resources within the areas of: plastics processing, energy management, training, elearning, polymer supply chain, technology transfer and conferences. All these organisations have a high profile and reputation for excellence within the target group.
The overall impact of ENERGYWISE Plastics is to increase the knowledge of the European plastics processing industry on energy management, which will in turn help to the reduce carbon emissions of the sector. This will continue beyond the life of the project in order to ensure the competitiveness and sustainability of the European plastics processing industry. If the profitability of a company equals their energy costs, even a small increase to the price of energy will have a drastic and potentially threatening effect.
Description ENERGYWISE Plastics presents a 'blended learning' approach, offering interactive on-line modules and traditional 'paper-based' resources. The project has focussed on the needs of SMEs, and is highly industry specific covering seven major processes (injection moulding, extrusion, thermoforming, blow moulding, rotational moulding, composites and compression moulding) as well as understanding energy, managing energy and utilities and peripherals.
Professional, Scientific and Technical Activities
program or curricula
material for open learning
There are three Energywise elearning courses aimed at different audiences which can be accessed through registering on the website:
1. Energy Management for Facilities and Utilities [EN,DE,FR]
2. Energy Management for Processors [EN,DE,ES,FR]
3. Energy Management for Managers [EN,FR,DE].
The courses are also available in printed form as Training Manuals. The English version is available from Smithers Rapra Technology Publications and German and Spanish hand books will also be available by Spring 2012.