Energy Efficiency 2016
Across the business we employ our manufacturing excellence principles and Re-Energise programme to ensure a maintained focus on improving our energy efficiency and encourage employees to identify opportunities to improve their sites and offices with the knowledge that incremental savings at a site level add up to significant savings.
Within our Building Products division, our Dry Silo Mortars (DSM), with sand drying being the core activity, our teams have been working hard to understand the impacts simple changes can have on their energy and CO2 impact.
In 2016 we commenced a masters research project with Lancaster Environment Centre aiming to understand the detailed properties of mortar and sand granular makeup and how this affects drainage rates and ultimately the drying properties within our process. The final conclusions will be used to launch a sand management continuous improvement project across the business providing a clear link from our quarries across our manufacturing processes.
At our Croxden DSM plant we have been developing the control system, working with our main drier manufacturer to capture better data on the relationships between incoming materials and gas usage. Once reliable trending has been completed the aim is to use this as a test bed for sands across the country, establishing baseline energy profiles to assess our other plants against.
These longer term projects have been combined with quicker wins on compressed air reductions fitting right sized variable speed compressors and recovering the cooling vent output to heat the offices via an intercooler.
In our Aggregates and Asphalt business, 2016 saw Tarmac personnel integrate ‘Optimise’- a continuous improvement programme into their own processes and procedures.
The basic framework for the programme is a structured bottom up approach that generates ideas from everyone on the sites to reduce wastage within the business. There is a simple mechanism for calculating whether the ideas will work and for approving them via the line management and finance teams.
Over the previous two years £30M of ideas have been generated and acted upon, but the key aspect of the Optimise Process is that these ideas are shared around every site. There are monthly conference calls between the sites to discuss their ideas and a Google Community set-up to share these ideas around every site – this really works and shares the good practices being captured.
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