Dow Chemical - Smart Energy Decisions

Energy Efficiency, GHG Emissions, Industrial, Industrial, Sourcing Renewables  -  July 8, 2016

Dow Chemical hits snag in energy intensity reduction, plunges forward in renewables

Dow Chemical Co. fell far short of its targeted reduction of energy intensity in 2015, but continues to plow forward with an aggressive renewable energy sourcing strategy, the company revealed in its new sustainability report. 

The multinational chemical corporation reported a 1.2% reduction in energy intensity in 2015 from a 2005 baseline, far below its target of 25%. In its sustainability report, Dow Chemical attributed the miss to its shift toward "higher-value, more technology-driven specialty products that are by nature more energy-intensive, and operating rates have also been reduced to match demand," that resulted in less efficient use of its assets.

"This portfolio transformation, coupled with global economic conditions, has impacted the scale and speed of anticipated energy intensity reductions," the company said. 

Adjusted for mergers and acquisitions, Dow Chemical's energy intensity was 4,353 BTU/lb in 2015 as compared to 4,406 BTU/lb in 2005, according to the report. 

Still, the company was able to reduce absolute GHG emissions by 27% since 2006, achieving its 2015 goal to maintain all GHG emissions below 2006 levels. That accomplishment was made possible at least in part through its adoption of renewable energy generation sources, which Smart Energy Decisions previously reported on in more detail. 

Dow Chemical said in its report:

We met our goal to use 400 megawatts of clean power by 2025 with capacity for nearly 545 megawatts (MW) that are either low carbon or from renewable sources. We want to continue momentum, so we increased the goal to 750 MW by 2025.

Going forward, the company said it would continue to work on energy efficiency and expanding our renewable energy use. The full report is available here.

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