Saint-Gobain North America, through its building products subsidiary CertainTeed LLC, has upgraded key equipment throughout its insulation plant in Athens, Georgia, which is projected to save over 7,300 megawatt hours of energy and 20 million gallons of water annually while reducing landfill waste by over 5,000 metric tons.
The project, honored by Saint-Gobain North America as its top overall sustainability project for 2023, is part of the company’s continued efforts to implement its global Grow and Impact strategy, which includes ambitious environmental sustainability goals, such as reducing the company’s consumption of energy and water at its facilities and diverting waste from landfills.
The Athens facility, which began operations in 1975, has upgraded key equipment used in the production of loose-fill insulation, including modifications to the facility’s loose-fill recycling machine. In addition, the plant has installed several new pieces of equipment, including a new baler, water sub-metering system, three air compressors, efficiency pumps on cooling towers and a cooling wind fan.
“While Saint-Gobain is focused on providing the leading light and sustainable building solutions to customers around the world, we are also committed to minimizing the environmental impact of our production processes,” said Jay Bachmann, vice president and general manager of CertainTeed Interior Products Group. “The work of our insulation plant in Athens is the perfect example of what sustainability looks like for industrial manufacturing operations, where a series of small changes brought together can make a huge impact. I want to thank the entire Athens team for their success in helping us meet our purpose - ‘To Make the World a Better Home.’”
This project follows several other recent actions taken by the company to solidify its commitment towards sustainability:
- In July, Saint-Gobain announced the opening of a new CertainTeed Architectural facility in Conyers, Georgia, which will be co-located with finishing partner QPC, allowing the company to drastically reduce the distance products must travel to finalize production, reducing carbon emissions by over 50 million pounds per year.
- In June, Saint-Gobain announced that it had been awarded a 2023 SEAL Business Sustainability Award for its work to create the first “net zero-carbon” gypsum wallboard facility for scope 1 and 2 emissions in North America at its plant outside Montreal.
- In May, CertainTeed Siding announced the completion of a submetering system at its Jackson, Michigan siding facility, saving more than 9 million gallons of water per year.
- In April, CertainTeed Canada surpassed 1 million tons of gypsum recycled and returned to production at its Vancouver, British Columbia, plant.
- In February, Saint-Gobain, through its building products subsidiary CertainTeed Roofing, acquired the rights to technology from recycling partner Asphaltica that will allow the company to recycle asphalt shingle waste, diverting it from landfill and furthering the company’s commitment to creating a circular economy in its production of roofing shingles.
- In December 2022, Saint-Gobain announced the launch of a recycling program at two locations in California, where windshield glass scraps from the company’s Sekurit facility will be recycled and reused in the production of insulation.
With over 200 manufacturing locations in the United States and Canada, 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 in Athens, can be found on the company’s career website.