Torrance, California – Honda has received Energy Star awards from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its auto plants in Ohio and Alabama. The awards are in recognition of curbing energy use during vehicle assembly.
For the fiscal year ending March 31, 2008, Honda’s average CO2 emissions per vehicle produced in North America were at their lowest levels since the company began measuring results in 2001. The EPA bases the award points on the amount of energy needed to produce an automobile, and includes factors such as vehicle size and production volume.
In Ohio, the plants in Marysville and East Liberty both earned top energy performance scores of 100 points. Honda has focused most of its activities on efficient use of lighting, chiller systems, motors, metering, heating, compressed air and air conditioning to reduce the use of electricity and natural gas. The Marysville plant produces the Honda Accord sedan and coupe, and Acura TL and RDX, while the East Liberty plant produces the Honda CR-V and Element.
Honda’s plant in Alabama, which produces the Odyssey, Pilot and Ridgeline, also earned the energy Star award. Initiatives include monitoring the use of equipment between shifts, during lunch and breaks, and on weekends, which helped reduce electricity use on the paint line by 10 million kilowatt hours, the equivalent of about 15 million pounds of CO2.
Both plants are implementing a unique “intelligent paint booth” technology that reduces energy consumption and related CO2 emissions from painting operations by as much as 25 per cent. Developed by Honda in Ohio and Ohio State University, the system uses a predictive control mechanism to keep temperature and humidity within specifications in the paint booth, even as weather conditions change.