2015 Sustainability Report

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Project Highlights

Programmable thermostats save $934,000 in energy costs

Installing the same programmable thermostat model in each of our U.S. architectural products stores is saving an estimated $934,000 annually in energy usage. All of the thermostats are now centrally controlled, helping ensure each store’s temperature settings are adjusted when the building is unoccupied in the evenings and weekends. 

Energy projects, process improvements deliver savings

Our plant in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, is using 13 percent less energy to produce products and saving $740,000 annually after implementing a number of energy-saving projects and process improvements since late 2014.
 
Changes included:
  • Replacing a single boiler with two units, which allows one unit to be used during the summer months versus having to run the large single unit;
  • Lowering the boilers’ temperature set point based on outside air temperature;
  • Replacing a cooling tower and a heating, ventilation and air conditioning system; and
  • Using energy-saving LED lights in place of high-pressure sodium lights in several areas.
 
Members of the plant’s staff also have participated in energy management training.

Upgraded water cooling system heats up energy savings

An initiative to upgrade the energy efficiency of the closed-loop chilled water system at our Huntsville, Alabama, location has reduced the system’s electricity usage by approximately 45 percent and the plant’s overall electricity consumption and cost by more than 7 percent.
 
Before the upgrade, the system ran 24 hours a day at a constant flow rate. For six to eight months when outside temperatures peaked, the plant had to operate two chillers to meet its cooling-water requirements. The chillers now operate in a primary and standby configuration due to the installation of variable frequency drives for the chilled water pumps and control valves at equipment usage points. This change has reduced overall chilled water requirements and almost completely eliminated the need to operate two chillers.

Tianjin turns waste heat into energy savings

What’s better than a hot shower after a long day at work? A shower with water that’s been warmed using waste heat.
 
In 2015, our Tianjin, China, location, installed a heat recovery system to use waste heat generated by an air compressor to warm water used in the employee shower area. The project saves 1,200 metric tons of steam and $34,000 annually.

Disciplined approach reduces energy intensity by 15.4 percent 

Engaging employees to close doors in the winter and shut off lights and equipment when not required is one of many actions taken by our Saultain, France, location that resulted in a 15.4 percent reduction in energy intensity between 2013 and 2015.
 
The location used a disciplined approach to uncover energy-saving opportunities that ranged from installing more energy-efficient equipment to reducing production cycle times. The reduced energy use delivered more than $225,000 in cost savings in 2015
 
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