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Concrete Progress: Lafarge Canada

Lafarge’s energy manager says there’s more to making Power Smart work than meets the eye.

Various Power Smart energy audits have assisted Larfarge in realizing an astonishing 15.6 gigawatt hours in savings.

Lafarge’s energy manager says there’s more to making Power Smart work than meets the eye.

It was entirely natural for Richmond-based Lafarge Canada Inc. to join Power Smart’s Industrial Energy Manager Program. Even decades before it chose Claude Brûlé as its energy manager in 2010, Lafarge was minimizing its environmental footprint wherever possible. Indeed, over 50 per cent of Lafarge’s research and development budget is dedicated to sustainable development innovations in all aspects of business.

Lafarge has participated in several key Power Smart Partner Industrial programs in recent years, including a compressed air audit, fan studies and end-use assessments.  The results are impressive. “For example, to date our compressed air audit led us to incorporate large air receivers and a variable speed compressor into our operations, and these, along with other operational initiatives, have enabled us to save up to 15.6 gigawatt hours in energy savings, with the possibility of an additional 21 gigawatt hours of identified energy savings,” says Brûlé.

With Brûlé’s support, Lafarge is advancing its core belief that progress in sustainability, greenhouse gas reduction and operational efficiency requires a system to measure, target, report and verify data. “Power Smart is a good program and it makes good business sense for us to be associated with it,” says Brûlé, adding that other companies seeking to embark on an energy management program must acknowledge at least three things: “First, that company must have someone dedicated to the role. Second, the company must truly buy into the program. Third and equally important, the energy manager must not be apprehensive about asking questions to get to the bottom of things. That way, the fullest potential of energy savings will be achieved.”