FOCUS: Minimize power consumption while maximizing their resources
One Plant, a South American facility, was tasked with finding ways to minimize power consumption while maximizing their resources. Their goals included; using less power each year, taking advantage of sunlight and reducing water consumption.
A Lean Six Sigma project was launched to understand various processes impacting these goals and recommend solutions. Using lean six sigma tools and techniques, the team took the following steps to achieve its’ goals:
– Implemented rational electric power utilization by; charging fork lift batteries during non-peak energy cost hours, cleaning plant roof to take advantage of sunlight, switching to energy-saving lamps, managing 24-hour lighting, optimizing air conditioning/heating temperature and turning off/ unplugging devices not in use.
– Reduced plant water consumption by repairing water leakage in key pump systems.
– Identified devices consuming the most electrical energy and redefining operational cycle times.
– Publishing a monthly control chart of electrical energy consumption.
In addition to the quantifiable business results, this project reinforced the corporate direction on sustainability and “go-green” priority.
The team’s efforts reduced annual electric power use by over 1 million kilowatt hours, saving over $400,000 per year. Water usage was reduced by over75,000 liters per year, resulting in additional consumption and treatment savings. Additionally, the plant’s 400 employees are fully engaged and motivated to maintain these energy saving benefits.
* Due to nondisclosure agreements, the organization referenced in this example cannot be disclosed.