Outstanding achievements among the 2014 Responsible Care® energy efficiency award winners

Many of the energy-saving materials and technologies  in use around the world today rely on innovations in chemistry. But what about the companies that make these products – are they working to improve energy efficiency in their own operations? You bet.

America’s chemistry industry walks the talk when it comes to saving energy. Since 1974, the U.S. chemical industry as a whole has improved its energy efficiency by 49 percent. Being energy-efficient in our companies and manufacturing facilities helps reduce costs and expand U.S. production and jobs.

In recognition of their commitment to sustainability, this week ACC presented 49 Responsible Care® Energy Efficiency Awards to 16 of its member companies. Twelve of the winners were deemed programs of “Exceptional Merit.” The winners were recognized at the 2014 Responsible Care Conference and Expo.

Here are some highlights of the award winners:

BASF Corporation received an award for its Corporate Energy Management Process. The company made further progress toward its goal of improving energy efficiency in production by 35 percent by 2020 compared with 2002. Projects included a wide range of improvements, from compressed air system optimizations, process modifications, and advanced process controls to general conservation practices (e.g., lighting), motor and transformer efficiency increases, flare system changes, and condensate recovery.
Carus Corporation was recognized for participating in the U.S. Department of Energy’s “Save Energy Now” initiative at its Peru, Illinois, site. The energy savings were achieved through a boiler efficiency improvement project and by maintaining a number of manufacturing process enhancements put in place over the last several years.
Ecolab Inc. was honored for reducing energy and water consumption at its Chicago site. Part of the company’s commitment to sustainability, the plant continued earlier energy efficiency efforts while instituting new improvements such as maximizing the utilization of equipment. Electricity savings were 14 percent of the production unit’s use.
SABIC received an award for making a broad range of energy efficiency improvements at its Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, location, from lowering the air pressure in the plant’s compressed air system to installing programmable thermostats and AC filters, turning off exterior lights in the daytime, and optimizing the amount of oxygen used in order to optimize combustion and reduce natural gas usage.
DuPont was recognized for achieving a significant improvement in manufacturing by recovering heat from condensate and eliminating condensation-induced “water hammer.” Advanced equipment – a compact heat exchanger using a higher grade, corrosion-resistant material – was installed.
Eastman Chemical Company was honored for receiving “ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager and Certification” at its Kingsport, Tennessee, plant. After competing in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2012 “Battle of the Buildings” in 2012, leading to ENERGY STAR recognition for two of the buildings entered, Eastman competed again in 2013, installing a building Automation System (BAS). Average EUI was reduced 28 percent in 2013, and official results are expected from EPA soon.
Occidental Chemical Corporation won an award for reducing total power consumption at its Hahnville, Louisiana, site. Chlor-alkali cell circuits were typically among the largest users of electricity at the facility. The company replaced existing anodes in the cells with a new anode design that reduced densities and total power consumption.

The Dow Chemical Company was honored for replacing its mechanical refrigeration units at Deer Park, Texas, with technologically advanced machines that offer environmental, economic, and reliability benefits. In 2013, the new machines were brought online, and cost savings were realized immediately. Energy usage was reduced by 48 percent.

Dow also received an award for improving building energy efficiency at its Midland, Michigan, site. The team devised a program based on other successful energy conservation efforts, driven around communication, behavior change, and competition. Dow plans to expand the program globally for an even larger contribution to its energy efficiency and conservation efforts. 

ExxonMobil Chemical Company received an award for implementing closed-loop circuit control for steam generation at its Houston, Texas, complex. The collaborative effort used optimized targets and required operational and technical resources from the refinery, chemical, power plant, and engineering groups.

Each year, the Responsible Care® Energy Efficiency Awards program highlights the steps ACC member companies have taken to improve energy efficiency at their plants and factories. ACC members are required to consider operational energy efficiency as well as waste minimization, reuse and recycling when developing their environmental, health, safety and security plans.

To learn more about the ways ACC members are improving their plants and factories to increase energy efficiency, visit http://responsiblecare.americanchemistry.com/Performance-Results/Energy. Also visit http://chemistrytoenergy.com/ to learn about all the ways chemistry can maximize energy efficiency.

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