Procter & Gamble Duracell recently became the latest in a growing list of Bradley County industries to partner with Cleveland Utilities and TVA in an energy-efficiency campaign that provides dual rewards — one for the company and the other for the local public utility.
Called the Energy Right Solutions for Industry program, major companies make improvements to internal operations that save power and therefore take some load off the Cleveland Utilities electric grid. In return, TVA provides a cash incentive that is presented on behalf of the regional and local utilities.
P&G Duracell, which was making energy-saving enhancements at about the same time as another local business — Southeastern Container — completed lighting upgrades at its Cleveland locations that will save more than 55 percent on energy consumption, according to information provided by the company and Cleveland Utilities.
In return, TVA and CU recently presented an incentive check in the amount of $144,799.40. At about the same time, Southeastern Container, in an announcement previously made by CU, was receiving an incentive check of $116,000 from TVA for its own set of improvements.
Information provided by CU and P&G Duracell explains the improvements made at the Cleveland company.
“Recent lighting upgrades at the Cleveland Cell Make and Packing locations resulted in 2 million kwh energy savings by reducing power required for targeted lighting systems by greater than 55 percent,” according to a brief statement by P&G Duracell and CU.
On hand for the check presentation at P&G Duracell were Robert Chastain, P&G IWS manager; Jerry McGinnis, P&G Engineering Group Leader; Bill Barkley, outgoing P&G plant manager who has since accepted a new global assignment as chain leader for Duracell at its global supply operations in Bethel, Conn.; Larry Chapman, P&G facilities manager; and Dale Wright, P&G project manager.
Tom Wheeler, president and CEO of Cleveland Utilities, and Tim Rader, customer service manager at TVA’s Cleveland office, made the check presentation.
Succeeding Barkley in the local Duracell leadership role is Delita F. Cobb who was officially introduced to the Cleveland community in a meet-and-greet reception earlier this month at the Cleveland/Bradley Chamber of Commerce. More than 50 area business and community leaders, and Chamber of Commerce members, attended the gathering to bid farewell to Barkley and to welcome Cobb.
Under Barkley’s stewardship for the past four years, the local Duracell operations achieved record results in safety, quality, customer service and cost reduction.
“I have enjoyed my time as plant manager in Cleveland,” Barkley said. “It has provided the opportunity for me to learn the battery business and work with great people. This new role as the global supply chain leader for Duracell will allow me to not only impact the Cleveland plant, but also the global Duracell business.”
Accepting the TVA and CU incentive check was one of Barkley’s final official roles at the Duracell operation in Cleveland.
At the Chamber’s meet-and-greet, Cobb, an Atlanta native who holds dual degrees from Spelman College and Georgia Tech, credited Barkley’s leadership.
“I plan to build on Bill’s foundation, expand on his results and to continue to grow the business,” Cobb told the Cleveland Daily Banner. Cobb, who for 22 years has held a variety of leadership roles in multiple locations for Procter & Gamble — the most recent of which was Cincinnati — added that she is excited to be in Cleveland.
Since its inception, the Energy Right Solutions for Industry program has partnered TVA and CU with a variety of Bradley County companies that have proactively sought methods to modernize their energy use. Most have included the installation of new lighting networks that are far more energy-efficient that previous methods.
An added benefit to such enhancements, along with the TVA financial incentive and reduced energy consumption on the agency’s power grid, is that industries are providing improved lighting for their workforce. This not only favorably impacts production, but improves employee safety.
At Southeastern Container, the company installed new high-efficiency T8 lighting fixtures to replace existing metal halide lights that used more power. The lighting improvement project is forecast to save Southeastern Container about 1,511,000 kilowatt hours per year, for the life of the new lighting fixtures which should be at least eight to 10 years, according to Wheeler.
The savings are enough to power about 100 Tennessee Valley homes each year while cutting some $124,000 per year from Southeastern Container’s electric bill for the life of the new fixtures.
The Energy Right Solutions program is all about dual partnerships that benefit all entities, Wheeler said.
“Helping companies save energy helps them save money,” the CU president explained. “That attracts more industry, which creates more jobs and promotes local economic development.”
Wheeler added, “We are very pleased that the technical assistance and incentive payments in our Energy Right Solutions for Industry Greater than 5 Megawatts program [are helping local companies] to achieve their energy savings goals.”