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Dean Foods Sustainability Report: GHG Intensity Drops 3.2%

Dean Foods reduced its greenhouse gas emissions intensity by 3.2 percent year-on-year, from .959 lbs of carbon dioxide equivalent per gallon of product in 2010 to .929 lbs per gallon in 2011, according to the company’s latest sustainability report.

The dairy company’s absolute greenhouse gas emissions fell almost 4 percent over the course of the year, from 1,538,563 metric tons in 2010 to 1,478,608 metric tons in 2011. These figures mean that since its baseline year of 2007, Dean has reduced its absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 11.2 percent and its greenhouse gas emissions per gallon of product produced by 8.4 percent.

Dean first set a greenhouse gas reduction goal in 2008, aiming to reduce emissions per gallon produced 20 percent by 2013, compared to its 2007 baseline. After completing what the report calls “a thorough examination of reduction methods and timelines,” Dean revised its greenhouse reduction goal in 2012 to a 25 percent reduction per gallon produced by 2020. The company’s new timing aligns with the comprehensive dairy industry goal, also 25 percent by 2020, established by the Innovation Center for US Dairy in 2010.

In 2011, 48 percent of Dean’s emissions came from purchased electricity; 29.2 percent came from fuel for transportation and 18.8 percent came from on-site fuels, the report says. The company uses renewable energy in the form of biogas, solar power and anaerobic digester.

The company’s energy intensity dropped 3.2 percent year-on-year, from .00451 MMBtu per gallon of product in 2010 to .00436 MMBtu per gallon in 2012. In that time period, Dean’s absolute energy use dropped by 5.2 percent, from 15,642,253 MMBtu in 2010 to 14,843,579 MMBtu in 2011.

When Dean Foods expanded its environmental sustainability goals in 2012, it created its first energy goal, aiming to reduce energy use 20 percent by 2020. The company began measuring its energy usage in 2007, which it uses as a baseline year. By the end of 2011, Dean had reduced the amount of energy used per gallon produced by 7.2 percent. Since 2007 the company has reduced its absolute energy use by 11.4 percent.

The company says that, through its xChange Point monitoring system, it has identified more than 1,100 energy reduction projects since January 2010. It has completed more than 450, the report says. Examples of implemented energy reduction initiatives include the introduction of LED lighting and motion sensors and the minimization of steam and air leaks. To date the company has installed real-time monitoring capabilities in 50 plants.

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