Problem Solving with Green Energy
An employee team developed a green energy solution that turns an environmental concern into big benefits for both the community and CP Kelco’s foodgums manufacturing plant in Lille Skensved, Denmark.
The project traces its origins to 2008, when the production facility received a notice of violation (NOV) from local authorities for excessive noise. The culprit: giant fans used to dissipate heat in the water cooling towers on site. The towers release surplus heat from the manufacturing process into the atmosphere. While the plant had taken several steps to address the noise, none did anything to make use of the surplus heat.
A recent expansion in the district heating network owned by the regional utility energy company, VEKS, opened the door to a far better solution. As several companies started to build in the vicinity, a district heating line was installed close to the plant. This created the chance to beneficially reuse, rather than waste, the surplus heat.
The project involves installing a new heat pump system on site that connects to the VEKS network. Once CP Kelco’s green energy technology is in place, the site’s cooling tower fans will need to run only occasionally during the summer months. In addition to resulting in a significant noise reduction, the project creates energy and CO2 savings.
The plant can now provide about 40,000 megawatt hours each year, enough to heat about 2,200 households in the community of Køge. In addition, by limiting the use of cooling towers, the plant’s water usage will be reduced by up to 64,000 cubic meters (17 million gallons) annually.
For their success with the project, the Lille Skensved team won a Mike Huber award, named after a longtime CEO and Huber’s highest form of employee recognition.
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