August 06, 2020 Taking it on board

Calgary gypsum board manufacturer implements efficiency solutions

Manufacturing facility targets energy efficiencies

At CertainTeed’s Calgary drywall manufacturing facility, all savings add up. From installing power monitors to changing temperature set-points, a number of energy conservation measures have been taken on board and are creating savings.

For over a century CertainTeed has helped shape the building products industry, delivering solutions for use in residential and commercial construction. Their product offering includes insulation, ceilings, roofing, siding, fence, deck and gypsum board products.

Looking to reduce energy waste, CertainTeed’s drywall plant joined the Strategic Energy Management program in November 2018. The team began by optimizing the facility’s HVAC system, identifying air compressor leak points and installing power monitors on various electrical panels in order to monitor energy demand.

Water is a key part of the gypsum board-making process. Reducing the boiler temperature set-points has reduced water over-heating and helped save natural gas. CertainTeed is also working to optimize water use in its wallboard formulation process, an improvement which reduces gas consumption during the board drying process and steam emissions from the plant.

Process Engineer Loren Olshansky, works at the Slurry Temperature Control panel to monitor the boiler temperature setting.

Engaging staff members

Producing an average of one million square feet of product per day, the busy plant employs over 90 people to sustain operations. Another important change has been working with staff to conserve natural gas by optimizing the start up and shut down of the dryer burners during times when their production line is down or is headed into extended down time.

“We’ve seen increased plant support and engagement in energy conservation overall. The SEM program has helped raised awareness among our staff about the ways in which we can all find energy savings…and when people see others engaged, they readily offer help and great ideas.” – Philip Nury, QPC Specialist

So far, CertainTeed’s efforts have seen nearly $24,000 in natural gas savings and over $2,000 in electricity savings. These energy savings are also helping to reduce emissions which helps the plant contribute to a key goal of their global organization, Saint-Gobain, to reduce CO2 emissions 15 per cent by 2025.

Looking forward

CertainTeed’s long-range plan involves further energy saving initiatives including purchasing energy-efficient electrical motors, replacing milling units and even using solar energy.

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