We are mindful that our manufacturing processes require substantial amounts of energy, and we are committed to innovative solutions that maximize efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Energy efficiency is a critical component of our strategy to achieve aggressive GHG reduction goals. Our commitment pays off through financial savings for our business and reduction of our environmental footprint. Reducing our energy use and emissions is an ongoing effort with clear, measurable targets.
As a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Better Plants Challenge Partner, Eastman and our worldwide energy management team collaborated with the DOE and the Oak Ridge and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories to develop an aspirational goal of 20% improvement in energy intensity. We chose a baseline year of 2008 — the year Eastman became an ENERGY STAR® Partner.
Eastman continues to receive consistent recognition for our energy efficiency program. The DOE Better Plants website highlights multiple Eastman projects for excellence. Every year for approximately three decades, Eastman has received energy efficiency awards from the American Chemistry Council, which chooses five projects for distinction in reducing energy consumption and GHG emissions.
Eastman continues to implement innovative approaches to natural resource management. For example, we restructured our energy management program in 2016 to become the global natural resource management program. The program scope now focuses not only on energy efficiency improvements but also on increasing water conservation and reuse.
Our process, design and engineering teams are working to increase Eastman’s energy efficiency and reduce our GHG emissions by considering energy efficiency in design through development of process transformation projects, employing renewable energy options, and exploring and evaluating breakthrough energy technologies. Through our operations transformation program, an energy workstream team is working directly with Eastman senior leaders to develop and deliver solutions that will further strengthen our energy efficiency.
While Eastman’s operations can be considered energy intensive, we generate a significant proportion of our energy using combined heat and power, or cogeneration. Electricity produced by combined heat and power plants is approximately twice as efficient as purchasing electricity from a utility with conventional power stations. Our use of cogeneration helps reduce the carbon emissions that would otherwise be required to operate these facilities.