What We're Doing
Lactalis American Group has created our "Get Green" program to be environmentally responsible. The program began with education and emphasis on energy conservation, and has extended to waste reduction, recycling, and conservation of other resources, including water. By The Numbers we save close to 930 million kilowatt hours through various lighting, refrigeration and other conservation projects, which equals a reduction of more than 500,000 tons of greenhouse gas (carbon dioxide) or enough kilowatt hours to power 64,500 homes for a year (assuming the typical home uses 1,200 kWh a month for a year).
Refrigeration Energy Management!
We keep our refrigerated distribution centers cold with energy management control systems. The refrigeration compressors speed up and slow down based on the demand for cold temperature. This variable speed option reduces electrical consumption. Since the installation of the energy management control system, we save 900,000 kilo watt hours per year and saving nearly 700 tons of CO2 emissions.
CLEANING CHEMICALS ARE RECOVERED AND REUSED
Cheese making equipment is cleaned and sanitized everyday. Instead of flushing the spent cleaning chemicals down the drain, we capture and filter this chemical on a daily basis. It is then reused in the next cleaning cycle. The reuse of cleaning chemicals such as caustic soda not only reduces costs but reduces the exposure of spent chemicals to the environment.
UTILIZING HYDRO ELECTRIC POWER FROM NIAGARA FALLS AND RESERVOIRS
Two of the largest facilities (Buffalo, New York and Nampa, Idaho) are plugged into hydro electric power. Where available we use non-fossil fuel energy sources to power cheese making equipment. We are currently exploring other renewable energy sources such as bio-fuel, wind power and solar power. Hydro power is virtually free of CO2 emissions.
ENERGY EFFICIENT LIGHTING
We have installed new lighting fixtures in many of our facilities saving over 750,000 kilo watt hours of electricity each year. This newest advanced lighting not only keeps the work area bright and safe but conserves energy. Motion detectors and day/night timers reduce consumption for the outside parking lots and walkways.
WASTEWATER TREATMENT FACILITIES SAVES TRUCKING AND FUEL
We have built two state of the art waste water treatment facilities at our Nampa, Idaho and Belmont, WI locations. These multi-million dollar facilities treat andpurify the cheese making effluent to near drinking water standards. We use to haul about 700,000 gallons of untreated water to permitted disposal sites every day. This would burn 360,000 gallons of diesel each year. Now we discharge the purified water back to the environment to replenish natural resources. Eliminating the hauling and fuel consumption saves over 4,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year.
HOT WATER REUSE SYSTEMS
We recover over 180,000 gallons of hot water every day. This clean and clear water is collected from various heat exchanges and stored for he next day's use in our "clean in place" system saving over 1,422 tons of CO2 emissions per year.
BOILER ECONOMIZERS; SAVES NATURAL GAS
Many of our steam boilers have economizers (a flue stack heat exchanger) that pre heats water from hot flue gases. This water is then used as boiler feed water that is then converted to steam. Pre heating the boiler feed water saves over 600 tons of CO2 emissions per year.
REUSE WATER FOR CROP IRRIGATION
Our Tipton, California facility provides 125,000 gallons of reuse water per day for local crop irrigation thereby saving well water supplies. The reuse water also adds nutrients to the soil.
As a result in any production environment Sludge is created. ? Rather than dumping this waste we convert this Sludge into compost. ? Compost is an essential element in revitalizing soil. ? Truly we are giving back to the earth by turning waste into something productive. ? We are also decreasing the amount of CO2 gases discharged in the air.
By reducing fuel consumption we save over 1,189 tons of CO2 into the air per year.
- We use a software package that helps us control transportation of our products.
- When possible we use rail transportation because this releases less CO2 than trucks do.
- For some products we use intermodal freight transport between our Nampa and Buffalo plants.
- This saves over 64 tons of CO2 emissions per year.