What else does the industry need to hear then those two words? Well, maybe it needs a bit more, but the end result is the industry is recovering, slowly, but recovering, and things are moving in a positive direction, said Joe Hogan, chief executive of ABB Ltd., today at the ABB Automation & Power World in Houston, Texas.
Last year at this time, the industry, the world for that matter, was in a huge hole. But as ABB’s Group Vice President of Automation, Mark Taft said last year, “tomorrow isn’t cancelled.” He was right. If anyone had a modicum of business sense, he or she would know you had to have a positive growth plan to get through the quagmire and then when things started to come around, business would truly pick up. “There were positive signs last year,” Hogan said. “We are now in a recovery. The world is in much better shape than a year ago. The emerging markets have set the growth.”
Throughout his presentation, Hogan showed a series of charts buttressing his idea that global growth was occurring and, in fact, showing how increases in the emerging markets was also good for the global economy. All countries, including the United States, will benefit from growth in the emerging markets, he said.
But whatever the state of the global economy, the world energy demand will continue to grow as countries in Asia continue to boom. By 2030, Hogan said, the U.S. and Europe will continue to have steady growth. On the other hand, Asia will look more like a hockey stick with its growth going off the charts.
With that growth in energy demand, it means there is a great opportunity for energy management. Energy efficiency, while not a hot and sexy subject, is a growth area of users. “Sixty percent of the solution is energy efficiency,” Hogan said.
Energy efficiency and a higher demand all add up to the Smart Grid and that means the power world and the automation environment have the potential to grow together. “Automation and power are converging,” Hogan said.
Underlying all the potential for growth is to ensure a safe operating environment and, additionally, keeping it secure – especially the Smart Grid.
— Gregory Hale