Two Flint-based GM plants honored by EPA for energy efficiency

At a press conference today, GM annouced that two of their plants had met an Energy Star challenge.

Today General Motors announced that two Flint automotive plants met an energy reduction challenge set by the federal Environmental Protection Agency.

The challenge was called the Energy Star Challenge for Industry. In order to meet the challenge, the manufacturing plant needs to reduce the energy used in production by at least 10 percent within five years.

The equivalent electricity of what 2,897 homes use annually was eliminated by Flint Assembly.

Flint Engine, the other winner, eliminated the equivalent of what 2,554 homes use annually.

â??Creativity and energy management go hand-in-hand at GM,â?? said Tim Lee, executive vice president of Global Manufacturing. â??Weâ??ve been consistently cutting energy use and emissions each year. Environmental responsibility â?? and its corresponding business benefits â?? continues to be an everyday driver within our facilities.â??

The energy reductions at the plants was not just about reducing the amount of carbon dioxide that enters the atmosphere. It was also about cost reductions.

Flint Assembly reduced their energy costs annually by more than $2.9 million while Flint Engine saved $2.3 million in energy costs annually.

Reducing the costs meant making changes at the plants. Replacing light bulbs with high efficiency lighting, exchanging a water-based boiler to an electric one, and developing, in-house, a way to turn off the plant's chillers remotely all contributed to the millions of dollars in savings the plants experienced.

Flint Assembly and Flint Engine have been honored in the past as well. This is the second year in a row the two plants have received this award.