Saint-Gobain, through its building products subsidiary CertainTeed Gypsum Inc., received the 2023 Better Project Award from the U.S. Department of Energy on April 19 for the company’s smart energy management system at its Buchanan, New York, gypsum facility.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Project awards recognize manufacturers who improve energy efficiency and competitiveness in the industrial sector. To be considered for an award, projects must deliver significant waste or energy savings and must be discreet, innovative and replicable in similar industrial facilities.

In operation for over 50 years, CertainTeed’s plant in Buchanan is the only gypsum wallboard manufacturing facility in New York. The system, which was designed in-house and consists of over 180 energy meters, allows the Buchanan team to track and contextualize energy data, forecast future energy use and tackle actual losses once identified. Within the first three months of installation, the system helped identify several opportunities to reduce energy usage and enabled the plant team to scope process changes and projects to address them.

The project comes as Saint-Gobain continues to implement its global Grow and Impact strategy, which includes ambitious environmental sustainability goals, such as reducing the company’s consumption of energy at its manufacturing sites, allowing Saint-Gobain to achieve a net zero carbon footprint by 2050. With the installation of this first system in Buchanan, the company plans to deploy similar technology at sites throughout North America.

“In a dynamic, continuous production facility like our Buchanan plant, it is essential to have real-time, in-depth data that can help us reduce our energy consumption, and our smart energy management system does just that,” said Jay Bachmann, Vice President and General Manager of CertainTeed’s Interior Product Group. “We are honored to be recognized by the Department of Energy for this work and I want to thank our entire Buchanan team for all their efforts to make this system a reality. As we continue to work towards our purpose of making the world a better home, we will always look for innovative ways to minimize our environmental footprint while maximizing our positive impact.”

This announcement follows several other recent actions taken by the Buchanan facility to solidify its commitment toward sustainability. In November, the plant was awarded an Excellence in Energy Award by NRG Energy for its commitment to energy efficiency, including the installation of energy-efficient grinding control technology, which reduced the plant’s energy consumption by nearly 700,000 kilowatt-hours per year. Earlier in 2022, CertainTeed Buchanan, in collaboration with three New York partner companies, launched a circular economy initiative to reclaim waste gypsum wallboard and reuse it as feedstock in production.

With over 145 manufacturing locations in the United States, every current and future member of the company’s team plays a vital role in achieving its sustainability goals. A current list of job openings at all Saint-Gobain locations, including the Buchanan facility, can be found on the company’s careers website.