How a Large V.A. Manufacturer Slashed Energy Costs–Keeping Jobs and Operations in the U.S.
The Volvo Trucks New River Valley (NRV) plant, located in Dublin, Virginia, is the company’s largest truck manufacturing facility in the world. They’re also the largest employer in southwest Virginia, with about 2,200 employees. In December 2009, they joined the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Save Energy Now LEADER initiative, which called on manufacturers to take a pledge to reduce their facilities’ energy intensity by 25% over 10 years. Since becoming a LEADER company, Volvo’s plant in Dublin has tapped into DOE’s resources and has reduced their energy intensity by almost 30% in only one year.
How did they do it?
By addressing common sense issues pertaining to energy efficiency the Volvo plant was able to cut costs. To start, the plant established an energy committee tasked with identifying and implementing energy efficiency projects. They also kicked-off a contest to engage employees in identifying ways the plant could be more efficient. Employee-suggested projects ended up saving the plant 546,543 kilowatt hours per month from 2009-2010, resulting in approximately $33,000 per month in cost savings.
Overall, the Volvo plant has saved about $2 million, with an initial investment of $850,000. Volvo’s energy committee continues to identify ways for the plant to be more energy efficient, and the company expects another 10%-20% reduction in energy intensity this year. The investments Volvo has made in energy efficiency has helped the manurfacturer cut costs, maintain jobs, and keep it operations in the U.S.
For more info and original posting go to Energy.gov Energy Blog.