Energy Saving Initiatives of MillerCoors Golden and Shenandoah Breweries Recognized by Department of Energy

MillerCoors recently was recognized by the Department of Energy (DOE) for implementing energy-saving initiatives to reduce electricity and natural gas usage at its Golden, Colo. and Shenandoah, Va. breweries. Both breweries received the DOE Energy Saver Award.

According to Dennis Puffer, chief operations and supply chain officer for MillerCoors, the DOE annually presents awards to individual plants and companies for actively pursuing energy-saving opportunities identified through a Save Energy Now energy assessment. By implementing the assessment recommendations, the Shenandoah and Golden plants have reduced energy use by approximately 18 percent in the last two years.

“Energy efficiency is a goal at all of our plants and we are particularly proud of this achievement by our employees,” Puffer said. “MillerCoors is committed to reducing our carbon footprint through effective employee education programs, more efficient equipment and projects that promote a cleaner use of energy,” he said.

Through the DOE assessment, plant employees learned about the types and costs of energy use. “Employees also learned about the impact they can have by implementing energy conservation practices,” Puffer said. He added that work teams -- from the warehouse to the can lines -- implemented a variety of projects to reduce energy, including:

  • making energy efficiency a key performance measurement;
  • implementing energy conservation best practices on the electrical and steam distribution systems to increase operational efficiency;
  • implementing lights out shutdown process for non-operating holidays;
  • incorporating energy efficiency into capital improvement projects – the new brewing process at the Shenandoah plant utilized highly energy efficient equipment and processes; and
  • installing additional utility metering in order to better facilitate energy focused improvement efforts.

Save Energy Now is a national initiative of DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) to drive a 25 percent reduction in industrial energy intensity over 10 years. Through Save Energy Now, ITP conducts no-cost energy assessments at U.S. manufacturing facilities around the country to identify and promote ways to reduce energy use in key industrial energy systems. Save Energy Now assessments help U.S. manufacturing facilities save an average of $2 million, or eight percent of their total energy costs.

Save Energy Now assessments are tailored to meet the needs of all sizes of plants. Major industrial plants are assessed by a DOE Energy Expert, while smaller to mid-sized plants are assessed by an Industrial Assessment Center. Nearly 20 percent of the plants assessed in 2007 received a Save Energy Now award.

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