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Smart Changes

Improvements can be big or small, and still have a notable impact. Below are just two examples.

Engaging Employees to Make a Difference

A recent initiative at our largest manufacturing plant, Waxdale, led to a 35% energy savings per fixture in more than 700 light fixtures.

In 2010, we installed new, energy-efficient light fixtures at the plant. This eliminated 776 tons of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the first year.

Then, employees were empowered to remind each other to “flip the switch” and turn off lights, fans and other equipment when not in use. Motion sensors also were installed in limited-use areas.

Improvements by the Truckload

Improving truck shippingWe found just by packing our shipments better, we could make improvements by the truckload.

Have you ever walked through an airport with a heavy suitcase dragging you down....while your traveling companion carried just a coffee cup? The same need for balance applies to trucks packed full of product.

The best fuel efficiency depends on an intelligent balance of weight and size. To maximize the capacity of our trucks, we completed a year-long Truckload Utilization Project in 2007.

For example, a truckload full of lightweight Ziploc® products weighs in far below a truck’s most efficient load target, while liquid products such as Windex® glass cleaner are heavy enough to reach maximum weight while leaving empty space in the trailer.

Armed with that knowledge, we created a system that combines multiple customer orders into an optimally configured truck. We also started using more “day cabs” – small truck cabs for one-day trips, which don’t require the extra weight of a big sleeping compartment. Day cabs are typically 3,000 pounds lighter than standard truck cabs.

By putting all these insights to work, in a single 12-month period we eliminated 1,882 tons of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent to making 90 two-person households carbon-neutral. We also used 2,098 fewer trucks and cut fuel use by 168,000 gallons.

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