Our Etowah plant is brighter and more energy efficient thanks to a lighting upgrade for the foundry. On August 19,2015, plant leaders received a $399,830 incentive check from Etowah Utilities for replacing 75% of lighting fixtures in office and plant locations with energy-saving LED fixtures. Representatives from Etowah Utilities and Tennessee Valley Authority were on hand for the check presentation at the Etowah plant.
According to Michael Hoecker, energy manager for Waupaca Foundry, the upgrade was made to save energy and improve worker safety. “The biggest improvement comes from higher quality lighting and more uniform light levels on the plant floor,” Hoecker said. “Increased light levels and lower shadows reduce worker eye strain and improve the quality inspection process, while enhancing safety for the entire work force. It also provides increased visibility for our fork truck drivers.” Roy Johnson, Etowah electrical technician, adds that maintenance savings will be improved over time due to the much longer lifespan of LED lights.
The plant will save about 60% of lighting costs which is about 5,088,000 kilowatt hours or the annual electricity use of 339 average Tennessee homes. From an overall environmental perspective, Hoecker says this amount is a reduction of 2,933 tons per year of CO2 emissions which equates to 885 acres of trees planted per year.