“My objective is to promote efficient and rational use of energy”

Ilva’s objective is to create innovation, in the energy sector too. Testimonies from our employees show how the drive for continual improvement is also a question of ideas and willpower on the part of individuals who reach the top of their professions. And thanks to everyone’s efforts, Ilva has obtained “white certificates”, veritable “efficiency energy” qualifications.

Alexander Mastrolia, 36, is an industrial engineer; he has a son of just over 1 year old and his life is split between the joys that little Marco gives him and the passion he puts into his job as Energy Manager at Ilva. “Suffice it to say that my son was born at 09.34 on 3 March 2016 and I was back at work on the same day, at 13.30.”

He’s in the fast track and his aim is to improve. Constantly, and without dwelling on the necessary sacrifices and driven by passion. Mastrolia came to Ilva Taranto nine years ago, on graduating from Politecnico di Bari.

He joined as an automation technician in the coking plant and soon started working on an energy efficiency programme in the Hot Rolling Area. He was then moved to Group Innovation and Technology Development as project manager and junior researcher, with monitoring and energy efficiency tasks.

Thanks to this expertise, and to further qualifications obtained by studying at night,
he was promoted to Group Energy Manager in February 2017.

Thanks to this expertise, and to further qualifications obtained by studying at night, he was promoted to Group Energy Manager in February 2017. So not just for the Taranto facility but for all the Group’s other plants and sites.

“Being an Energy Manager is a big responsibility, because you have to make sure all your colleagues are aware of correct use of energy as an objective, and develop projects and investments aiming at that result.

The figure of Energy Manager was introduced by law 10/1991 for all energy-intensive users, ie. companies that use over 10,000 toe (tonne of oil equivalent) a year, and the job involves promoting efficient and rational use of energy. An increasingly important role, especially in a company like Ilva whose business is centred on environmental sustainability.

“Being an Energy Manager is a big responsibility,” Mastrolia tells us, “because you have to make sure all your colleagues are aware of correct use of energy as an objective, and develop projects and investments aiming at that result.”

The many measures undertaken to date include the three projects that enabled Ilva to obtain the so-called “white certificates”, veritable “energy efficiency” qualifications, introduced by ministry decrees on 20 July 2004 to promote energy saving.

These three projects were assessed and approved by the GSE (Gestore Servizio Elettrico – electricity service provider), which thus granted Ilva entitlement to economic compensation for its energy saving, but, as Mastolia explains, “various other measures are being taken in the plant engineering phase, new developments we are working on as quickly as possible because the company, everyone who works in it and the environment deserve it”.

Another important instrument at the Energy Manager’s disposal is “energy diagnosis”. This too is provided for by law and consists of detailed analysis of how an enterprise uses energy (for heating, producing domestic hot water, power supply and transport), the results of which help plan action to cut waste and optimize costs and consumption levels.

This diagnosis is delivered to Enea every four years, the next being due in December 2019. “We’re already working on this objective,” explains Mastrolia, “because for us the diagnosis isn’t a merely legal requirement but an opportunity to save and improve our processes.”

Analysis of consumption rates is a practice Mastrolia has been refining for years: he started in the Hot Rolling Area and has now “exported” it to Group level as Energy Manager. “This is why I’m still grateful to my colleague Francesco Alba, manager of Mills 1 and 2, who years ago took me aside and introduced me to the world of energy efficiency. I remember going round the mills with him, on Saturdays and Sundays too. I really learned a lot from him.”

“I did a 40 hour course at a centre in Bari, studying in the evenings to get my certificate.
I remember it was a complicated exam but in February 2017 I became an Energy manager.”

In October 2015, when an energy efficiency boosting project was launched across the whole of Ilva’s industrial operations, Mastrolia was assigned to the Research & Development area by Giancarlo Quaranta, head of Group Innovation and Technology Development. He began here as a project manager (junior researcher grade) before becoming senior and deciding to pursue a career as an energy manager. “In June 2016 I was short of just one qualification, the energy management certificate required by Uni Cei 11339 to be able to submit on Ilva’s behalf the projects we’d implemented for the purpose of obtaining our white certificates.”

“I did a 40 hour course in Bari, studying in the evenings after work, and in the end took an exam in Bergamo to get the certificate. I remember it was a very complicated exam, and for my final revision I shut myself away in a hotel in Bergamo for a couple of days. But in February 2017 I became an Energy manager.”

Because the important thing in life is to always believe in your passions and grow by making them happen. “Almost as if it were a game, engrossed in a game like my little Marco now.”