Anglet, FR

SP2016 keynote: Olivier Cotter, Schneider Electric

“Energy Landscapes: (introduction to ENERNET roundtable)” 

Mr. Olivier Cottet is the marketing manager for the market of the building at Schneider France, Olivier Cottet, 45 years old, has been appointed president of the Europtibat association. Former student of the Institute of electricians from Grenoble, Olivier Cottet has comencé career in the sector of automa-tion of the building within the Merlin-Gerin company in 1981. In 1995, he joined the strategic Division France of the Schneider group marketing department, supports offer low voltage, before being appointed in 1998, marketing manager of the building for Schneider France market. Appointed presi-dent of the association for three years, Olivier Cottet wish “strengthen the dynamic fort current Association by expanding its audi-ence in the professional circles and by pro-moting the development of the service offer-ings of exploitation maintenance around its product repository.

Schneider Electric develops connected technologies and solutions to manage energy and process in ways that are safe, reliable, efficient and sustainable. The Group invests in R&D in order to sustain innovation and differentiation, with a strong commitment to sustainable development.

More than two-thirds of large tertiary buildings will be “smart,” predicted Olivier Cottet (Homes Program)

Interview with Olivier Cottet, marketing director of the HOMES Program, the largest European green building program initiated by Schneider Electric, which carries out research on the active control of buildings in order to optimize their consumption, With the smart grid, the involvement of building actors, monitoring and the creation of tools for the sector.

How do you see the progress of the “intelligent” building?
The intelligent building market (which is equipped with control-command and monitoring systems to optimize energy consumption) is still emerging, is now experiencing, and will experience in the years to come a boom particular. Indeed, the “intelligence” in buildings, marginal 20 years ago, has appeared for ten years in the tertiary constructions, especially in those of supermarkets (more than 10 000 m2). Since then, the costs of these techniques have decreased (about 4 to 5% of the cost of construction) and have been able to develop in smaller buildings of 5,000 m2. Today, with the evolution of regulations – new RT 2012, NF EN 16 001, law Nome on energy … – we see a strong increase in the rate of equipment. The number of new buildings equipped with such functions is expected to increase significantly in the coming years. Even those under 1,000 m2 will integrate these intelligent functions that become indispensable. 

The quality of the building, with good insulation and high-performance glazing, is not enough to make a building low in energy consumption. It is a starting point but it is necessary to manage the way it is occupied and exploited. To do this, equipment monitoring is essential to measure energy consumption and thus be able to provide solutions for improvement. For the new buildings of the tertiary sector, we are going to be almost non-existent, and we are going to have 20 to 25% equipment in the years to come. This market is booming at the level of large companies as well as SMEs, but also at the level of local authorities, which also want to realize savings and adopt a genuine sustainable development approach. 

A survey carried out in 2009 on investments related to the reduction of energy expenditure showed that 7 out of 10 companies pursued sustainable development rather than economic objectives. In this respect, labels such as HQE or the Grenelle de l’Environnement have worked very well as a driver of this trend. Today, real estate developers are trying to find a market value for green labels.

How do you see the progress of the “intelligent” building?
At European level, the behavior of the actors is closely linked to that of the States. Each State has complete freedom to translate the European Directive on the energy performance of buildings. 
The United Kingdom is the most advanced on monitoring and control systems, Spain on the management of lighting and air conditioning, France on insulation and double glazing. But since the Building Plan of the Grenelle and with the RT 2012, France has a position of opinion leader in Europe in the field of energy performance. We are very voluntarist even if we are still too conceptual, with an abundance of labels and standards a bit complicated.

How do you see the progress of the “intelligent” building?
Schneider Electric is at the heart of energy efficiency through its various activities. Our business is energy management and we expect strong growth in this area. The group is, for example, the initiator of the HOMES program (HOMES as Habitats and Buildings Optimized for the Control of Energy and Services), a collaborative innovation program launched long before the Grenelle de l ‘Environment.

What is the HOMES program?
HOMES is the largest European research program in the field of energy efficiency in buildings. Initiated by Schneider Electric in 2008, it brings together 13 partners: private companies with technologies complementary to ours, such as Philips for lighting, ST Microelectronics or Somfy, as well as public research laboratories such as EDF, CSTB Or the CEA. 
The objective is to propose solutions to enable each building to achieve the best energy performance. Existing small commercial buildings are our core target: 95% of the European tertiary sector consists of buildings of less than 2,500 m² and are equipped with virtually no energy management system. The program has a budget of 88 million euros, of which 39 million contributed by the French State and the rest by the partners. 
We are halfway: HOMES was created in September 2008 for 4 years. We have recently presented prototypes and Schneider Electric will market the first products from the program in 2011. First of all, it is an electrical outlet intended for the residential sector, capable of measuring and controlling the consumption of the equipment connected to it. Be careful, it is not a gadget designed to function by itself: it is conceived as a brick of a set. The catch must be integrated into an overall energy management system.

What savings can these technologies allow?
The three green building technologies, namely a high-quality building, high-performance equipment and control-command and monitoring systems all have the same potential: to reduce consumption by half.

Technologically, is Europe ahead or behind compared to, for example, the United States?
At the technological level, proof of our lead, the first customer of the sensor from the HOMES program was MIT. The French State is investing heavily in energy efficiency through the Ademe budget, aid for investments in this type of eco-loan at zero interest rate, grants from local authorities and public buildings in the State or Which are often exemplary in their Agenda 21. The effort is extraordinarily sustained. The stakes are enormous, also for the creation of employment and growth drivers. And 2011 will go further: we will not only talk about intelligent buildings or the smart grid, but eco-neighborhoods and green cities.