Motor Management Also Considers Energy Efficiency

EP Editorial Staff | December 23, 2009

1209MDMBy now, everyone knows that improving the efficiency of your motors can be a cost-effective way to reduce your carbon footprint, shrink your energy bills and improve process reliability.

Looking beyond the motor, motor management and system optimization, though, offers further opportunities to operationalize motor efficiency and achieve even greater longterm savings. The Motor Decisions Matter Campaign (MDM) can help you do it. MDM provides tools and resources to help you begin managing your motor fleet to save carbon and money. Consider the following success stories.

Crown Pacific Lumber Company
Crown Pacific Lumber Company conducted an inventory of more than 300 motors at a sawmill in La Pine, OR[1] and discovered two inefficient motors that were costing the company $3400 per year more than comparable premium-efficiency motors. The company replaced one with a premium-efficiency unit and found a way to take the other offline entirely, saving 168,000 kWh of electricity—or $6800—and approximately 226,800 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually.

Motor management led Crown Pacific to seek additional efficiency opportunities. In fact, the La Pine facility also identified a significant energy-savings opportunity in its compressed air system—2 million kWh of compressed air system savings, to be exact. A compressed air-system optimization saved the company $81,000, including approximately 2.7 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions per year (equivalent to taking 223 vehicles off the road). Even without any cost for carbon, this project had a simple payback of less than two years. But let’s assume an emissions price of $2.19/ton—the price at which emissions permits were trading in New England RGGI states last summer. At that rate, this project would generate an additional $2950 in savings per year.

Ash Grove Cement
Specifying best-practice motor repair can also reduce your facility’s carbon emissions and energy costs. Recognizing that efficiency losses of even 1 or 2% due to improper repair could cost thousands of dollars in energy costs over the lifetime of a large motor, Ash Grove Cement sought out best-practices repair providers to service motors at its facility in Durkee, OR[2].

Large units—like its 1500 hp kiln fan motor— are critical to Ash Grove’s operations. An efficiency loss of just 1% for that particular motor could generate $39,000 in energy costs and 1.3 million pounds of carbon emissions over the life of the unit. Working with a local motor service provider can help you manage the repair or replace decision, and to verify the successful repair of critical motors. That’s the route Ash Grove took.

Writing Your Own Success Story

Energy-efficient motors are crucial in efforts to reduce carbon emissions and energy bills for industrial facilities. Remember that MDM is available to help you get started on your own path to success in this area. MT

1. See “Crown Pacific Lumber Company Saves Money With Motor Management Tools” at
2. See “Ash Grove And Riverside Inc. Commit To Motor Repair Excellence” at: Grove.pdf

The Motor Decisions Matter campaign is managed by the Consortium for Energy Efficiency, a North American nonprofit organization that promotes energy-saving products, equipment and technologies. For further information, contact MDM staff at or (617) 589-3949.




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