LORDSTOWN - The General Motors Lordstown Complex is one of 54 facilities to meet a voluntary energy-reduction challenge set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, cutting its energy intensity by 33 percent, plant officials said.
The energy reduction came over a two-year period in response to the EPA's Energy Star Challenge for industry. The goal was to reduce energy intensity by 10 percent over five years.
According to information released by the plant, Lordstown's reduction avoided 93,579 metric tons of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere or the equivalent of electricity use by 10,574 U.S. homes annually.
"Our employees are committed to helping increase our global operations' energy efficiency," said Mike Robinson, GM vice president of sustainability and global regulatory affairs. "Energy efficiency reduces our emissions and improves our bottom line, so we are driven to make improvements wherever we can."
Between 2005 and 2010, GM reduced energy use in its global facilities by 28 percent and has since set a new to reduce energy intensity globally 20 percent by 2020.
Locally, GM's Lordstown Complex saved more than $7.5 million in energy costs annually through its efforts. GM leads all companies worldwide in meeting the challenge. Total companywide savings in energy costs total $90 million.
Greener Lordstown GM
Waste reductions since 2010:
Scrap metal: 35,993 tons
Wood pallets: 5267 tons
Lead acid batteries: 11 tons
Concrete: 930 tons
Purge solvent: 251 tons
Cardboard: 8084 tons
Plastic: 87 tons
Miscellaneous wood: 963 tons
Other renewable energy and efficiency efforts:
Construction of a 12-vehicle solar-powered electric charging station;
Scheduled installation of a solar panel array in 2013 to generate 750 kw of electricity;
Third largest Great Blue Heron rookery in Ohio certified by the Wildlife Habitat Council on complex property; and
Continuous monitoring of the process water level adjustments used in paint and reusing water drainage resulting in reduced water usage from 180 to 60 gallons per minute.
Eco-friendly employee involvement:
Volunteering as judges in local and regional science fairs;
Partners with the Youngstown State University and Earth Force in the GM Global Rivers Environmental Education Network to mentor students on water quality and their impact on watersheds; and
Collected 3.1 tons of electronic equipment recycling with proceeds donated to Down Syndrome Association and local United Way.
Source: GM Lordstown
Lordstown's energy-saving projects include demolition of obsolete buildings and efficiency improvements to vehicle paint and complex lighting processes.