Michelin's corporate environmental commitments require a 20% reduction in production related energy use between 2008 and 2016. Following the installation of two large wind turbines at the site, managers and engineers at Michelin in Dundee called on the Carbon Trust to provide specialist support in identifying and implementing actions that would improve the site's energy efficiency.
In 2010 the Carbon Trust concluded a detailed assessment of energy use in a number of key areas at Michelin in Dundee, providing the company with recommendations for actions that would make considerable savings in energy use and operating costs - as well as reducing emissions of carbon dioxide. Reducing energy consumption helps to maintain the site's competitiveness and lowers its sensitivity to future increases in energy prices.
The savings have been achieved through improvements in several areas including the steam and compressed air systems as well as to the large water pumping systems. Whilst the level of investment was considerable, the payback period offered by the improvements was attractive.
The Carbon Trust has helped Michelin in Dundee to put in place a number of measures which have realised significant savings in energy costs. These measures include:
- Recovering heat from flash steam in the condensate recovery system (that previously was vented to the atmosphere) reduces natural gas consumption by the boilers and provides energy cost savings of almost £46,000 per annum. In addition, the savings in fresh water achieved by recycling the re-condensed flash steam reduces running costs by a further £2,000 per annum. The overall cost for the project was £100,000 and so the payback period was slightly over 2 years.
- Using VSDs instead of control valves to regulate water flow-rates in several key systems has reduced electricity costs by £27,000 per annum. The project costs were £20,000 and so a payback period of only 9 months.
- Installing stainless steel pipework between the air compressors and driers to eliminate the pressure losses caused by a set of air filters. This project cost approximately £16,000 to implement but has generated cost savings of £8,000 per annum, resulting in a payback period of 2 years.
Michelin at Dundee continues to engage in energy efficiency projects in pursuit of the group's corporate commitments and is currently investing in a programme to upgrade thermal insulation on pipework components around the site.
Savings at a glance
- CO2 emissions reduced by 860 tonnes per annum.
- Energy cost savings of £83,000 per annum.
- Payback period on overall investment of less than 2 years.
Download the full Michelin Dundee case study (PDF)