SC Johnson ‘Flip the Switch’ Initiative Reduces Energy Use By 35 Percent Per Fixture at Its Largest Manufacturing Plant

Employee-driven Effort Underscores Savings Possible from Monitoring Energy Consumption
Aug 3, 2011 12:45 PM ET
(3BL Media / theCSRfeed) Racine, Wis. - Aug 3, 2011 - An ambitious energy-savings initiative driven by SC Johnson employees has resulted in a 35 percent energy savings per fixture in more than 700 light fixtures at the company’s largest manufacturing plant in Sturtevant, Wis. The project underscores the huge energy savings possible throughout industry by employing efficient energy practices.   As part of SC Johnson’s “Flip the Switch” campaign, these new energy-efficient light fixtures were installed at its 2.2 million-square-foot Waxdale plant, the size of 36 football fields, contributing to an elimination of 776 tons of greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions at the plant since mid-2010.  The campaign seeks to empower employees to champion energy conservation and education, advocate for responsible practices and help the company reduce its overall environmental footprint.   “We believe it’s important to continuously embrace energy conservation and develop best practices to improve daily operations and, ultimately, our overall business,” says Kelly M. Semrau, Senior Vice President of Global Corporate Affairs, Communication and Sustainability.  “We’re particularly proud of this program as it was actually initiated by a manufacturing team member and it’s a great example of environmental sustainability in action.  Sustainability is integral to everything we do – from product design and ingredients to the manufacturing facilities themselves.”   The International Energy Agency estimates that such energy-efficiency initiatives in buildings, industrial processes and transportation could reduce the world’s energy needs in 2050 by one third and help control global GHG emissions.  Given that there are more than 32,000 manufacturing facilities[i] in the U.S. alone, initiatives like this pose a significant opportunity for other sites to accomplish similar environmental goals.    Waxdale Employee Initiated Campaign The “Flip the Switch” campaign aims to pare energy use, including turning off lights, fans and other energy-consuming equipment when not in use. The new light fixtures, for instance, generate a higher level of lumens, or brightness, while using far less power. Motion sensors have been installed in limited use meeting rooms and other areas to help reduce energy consumption and maintenance costs.  The facility also recently installed photovoltaic solar panels to power a new safety sign at the plant’s entrance that furnishes safety statistics and employee updates.  Combining this renewables innovation with the employee behavior change and the lighting retrofit helps to set this project apart from other corporate lighting initiatives.    The Waxdale plant, which manufactures such well-known brands as GLADE®, WINDEX®, and SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, has taken a number of leading environmental steps over the past several years. The facility is powered by cogenerated electricity from twin turbines that run on renewable waste methane from a public landfill and natural gas, eliminating 52,000 tons of GHG emissions per year as a result. In 2007, Waxdale was recognized by the Center for Resource Solutions for using Green-e certified energy, the leading renewable-energy certification and verification program in the United States. Most recently, Waxdale’s initiatives contributed to SC Johnson’s achievement of a 27.4 percent absolute reduction in GHGs from 2005 levels, exceeding the eight percent reduction target the company set through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Climate Leaders program.   Learn more about SC Johnson’s energy and sustainability efforts. About SC Johnson SC Johnson is a family-owned and managed business dedicated to innovative, high-quality products, excellence in the workplace and a long-term commitment to the environment and the communities in which it operates. Based in the USA, the company is one of the world's leading manufacturers of household cleaning products and products for home storage, air care, and pest control. It markets such well-known brands as GLADE®, OFF!®, PLEDGE®, RAID®, SCRUBBING BUBBLES®, SHOUT®, WINDEX® and ZIPLOC® in the U.S. and beyond, with brands marketed outside the U.S. including AUTAN®, BAYGON®, BRISE®, KABIKILLER®, KLEAR®, and MR. MUSCLE®. The 125-year-old company, with more than $8 billion in sales, employs approximately 12,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country around the world.    [i]  
  Media Contacts: Jam Stewart, SC Johnson and (262) 260-6654   Eileen Gallagher, Edelman and (312) 240-2966   SCJ15815