Many developed and developing economies are seeking to mitigate future climate change risks by developing strategies to reduce carbon emissions and the use of fossil fuels. Industrial energy use efficiency can be significantly enhanced by better energy recovery and integration promises significant potential to reduce emissions at low cost. These approaches are seen as crucial enablers of sustainable solutions in industries and are expected to reduce energy consumption significantly within existing technology. Many concepts and methods have been proposed for optimizing energy systems for individual processes and multiple processes linked through central utility systems. Pinch analysis along with other principles for process integration is the most widely applied approach to maximize process heat recovery. Systematic methods are also available for energy integration in an overall plant, or Total Site, consisting of multiple processes served by a common utility system. Scientific community also takes attention on development of sustainable industrial zone.

Even though not adequately covered by design approaches, reductions can be further advanced by energy recovery between multiple plants to exploit synergies between heating, cooling and power requirements in industrial zones or cities. In these zones significant quantities of fuel are combusted in order to provide the necessary energy for industrial activities. In many countries, substantial reductions in fuel consumption and GHG emissions at a national level would require efficiency gains in the industrial zones. Multiple processing plants are typically concentrated in a zone, with each plant consisting of one or more processes. Plants have their own independent operating and maintenance schedules, utility systems, and are owned and operated by different entities. The distances between plants can be considerable. To date, waste heat recovery and reuse across processing plants in industrial zones is a largely unexplored research area. We present an approach to enable the targeting of waste heat recovery and cogeneration potentials across plants in industrial zones and the development of concrete integration options based on economic criteria.


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