Processing plastics requires a lot of energy, especially in terms of electricity use necessary to activate the equipment for the injection/extrusion moulding. RECA PLAST decided to join STEEEP in a moment of growth and expansion, both in production and in facilities, with the aim of learning how to manage energy use and reduce energy costs.
The initial STEEEP assessment (walk- through energy audit of the industrial facility with analysis of energy supply records) pointed out various important facts. The energy consumption per employee was relatively high, especially in comparison to other SMEs from the region participating in STEEEP. The company’s energy costs amounted to more than 6% of the overall turnover. The utility equipment contributed significantly to the overall electricity consumption (e.g. 33% for compressed air system), particularly during peak hours.
The Energy Management Plan, which was compiled by a certified energy management expert, included technical recommendations and financial analyses to achieve energy and cost savings, a path to energy efficiency for the industrial process and recommendations on how to lower the company’s carbon footprint. After in-depth discussions, RECA PLAST decided to implement a short/medium term action plan which included the following energy efficiency measures:
- Some of the company’s machinery was replaced with Best Available Techniques equipment: (1) a new Computer Numeric Control machine was installed during 2015/2016, which lead to energy savings of more than 40% in the mould manufacturing process, and (2): a new screw compressor with Variable Speed Driver technology was installed in 2014/2015 for utility service (compressed air): saving estimated > 45%; payback period < 1 year,
- A large part of the lighting system was replaced with LED technology, which led to estimated savings of about 50%; payback period < 3 years,
- Renewable Energy Production: Benefiting from public grants, the roof of the headquarters in Osimo was covered with a 20kWp photovoltaic installation, providing additional electricity during peak hours.
Supported by Unioncamere Marche