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Union Carbide, Others Improve Efficiency up to 15%

Union Carbide and Owens Corning are among four manufacturers whose plants have achieved 6.5 to 15 percent energy efficiency improvements through a Department of Energy program, the DOE says.

The four plants, all in Texas, are participants of the Superior Energy Performance certification program. The program works by providing a roadmap on how to reduce energy consumption, involving all parts of management and operations without sacrificing companies’ competitive edge, the DOE says.

Companies that have completed the certification program so far include Union Carbide, a subsidiary of Dow Chemical with a plant in Texas City. This is in addition to the first three certified companies: Cook Composites and Polymers, Freescale Semiconductor and Owens Corning.

The industrial and manufacturing sectors account for roughly one-third of energy use in the U.S., according to the DOE.

Companies certified with the Superior Energy Performance stamp must comply with ISO 50001, the international energy management standard, expected to take effect in the third quarter of this year. They also must measure and show improvements in their energy performance.

Silver, gold and platinum awards are available to those meeting DOE criteria for energy savings. The certification program is accredited by the American National Standards Institute.

Cook, Freescale and Owens Corning all participated in a pilot, started in May 2008 as a partnership between the department and the DOE-funded Texas Industries of the Future program at the University of Texas in Austin. A series of Energy Management Demonstration projects are now underway across the country to further test the elements of the program.

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