For its comprehensive world-wide energy conservation efforts, which in 2009 saved approximately 1.3 trillion British thermal units (Btus) of energy throughout the company's operations in 65 countries, 3M has been named a winner of the ENERGY STAR Award.
The awards are made jointly by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Energy.
Steve Schultz, 3M corporate energy manager, notes that 2009's reduction in energy consumption lowered the company energy bill by $17.2 million, representing a 13.5% decline from the previous year.
In 1975, 3M established its ongoing "Pollution Prevention Pays" (3P) initiative, intended to root out sources of pollution before it enters the environment. In 2002, the 3P program began an intensive focus on energy efficiency, and since that time the company has completed 645 energy-saving projects that have prevented approximately 5.25 trillion Btus of energy consumption. Sixty-nine of those projects were begun in 2009.
Since 2003 3M has conducted an annual internal Plant Energy Awards and Recognition Program, rating plants on their efforts on energy reduction on a Btus-per-pound-of-product basis. Nine plant energy teams attained the platinum level, representing the programs highest award; teams from 39 facilities in all won awards.