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Sixteen General Motors (GM) facilities recently earned recognition for their continued efforts to increase energy efficiency. GM's Lansing Delta Township plant in Michigan and Fort Wayne assembly plant in Indiana earned an Energy Star certification for superior energy performance. The certification signifies that these plants are more energy efficient than 75 percent of similar buildings nationwide and meet strict performance levels set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Improvements included new doors that isolate air flow in paint shops at the Lansing Delta Township plant and more efficient energy management systems at the Fort Wayne assembly plant. The Fort Wayne team also installed new variable-frequency drives that help cooling tower pump systems and fans operate with greater precision. The Fort Wayne assembly plant will receive nearly $1 million in utility incentives over the next three years as a result.
The installation of 186,000 LED bulbs and fixtures is one of many steps helping GM save $73 million in energy costs in 2016. Both the Lansing Delta Township plant and Fort Wayne assembly plant use LED lighting in their facilities.
"Energy efficiency can reduce electricity loads, which will help us more easily transition to renewable energy sources," said Al Hildreth, GM's global energy manager. "Together, these environmental improvements help us reduce our carbon footprint, cut costs and deliver value back to our customers."
GM warehouses in Waterford and Burton, Michigan, also earned an Energy Star certification. These customer care and aftersales operations leveraged natural light via new skylights, installed LEDs with motion sensors and are using energy management systems to control heating.
Another Energy Star program, the Challenge for Industry, recognizes manufacturing facilities that have cut energy intensity by 10 percent within five years. This year, 12 GM sites met the challenge, including the Bedford Casting Operations in Indiana and the Grand Rapids Operations in Michigan, which were first-time achievers.
"Improving the energy efficiency of our nation's industrial facilities is critical to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving the health of businesses," said Jean Lupinacci, chief of the Energy Star Commercial & Industrial Branch. "From the plant floor to the boardroom, organizations are leading the way by making their facilities more efficient and achieving EPA's Energy Star Challenge for Industry."
The Grand Rapids Operations replaced 11,000 lights with LED tubes, improved its energy management systems and installed new variable-frequency drives on heating and cooling equipment. These activities resulted in an 18 percent reduction in energy intensity.
The Bedford Casting Operations reduced its energy intensity by 12 percent through improvements such as installing high-efficiency burner controls on its melting furnaces and monitoring the energy use of facility equipment in real time.
For more information, visit www.gm.com.