Dow Corning Measures Companies’ Attitudes toward Alternative
With energy prices on the rise around the world, businesses are
searching for sustainable
alternative energy solutions. According to an international study on
alternative energy trends conducted by Harris Interactive for Dow Corning Corporation, nearly 40 percent of
companies globally have either implemented or are actively investigating
alternative energy technology.
“We anticipate alternative energy technologies, like solar, will gain even
greater importance in the future with oil prices continuing to rise,” said Peter
Cartwright (PDF size = 41 KB), Dow Corning executive director for
environment, health and safety.
“This study shows that companies are looking to renewable
energy such as solar to reduce their rising energy costs and address
environmental issues,” said Rhone Resch, president of the Solar Energy Industries Association. “We
need common-sense policies to expand renewable energy markets and create
green-collar jobs, while moving us to a clean energy future.”
When asked what factors influence their company’s decisions
about alternative energy, respondents indicated that cost reduction, company
reputation and environmental benefits were the greatest factors.
In the Americas, enhancing the company’s reputation was
more important than in other regions.
In Europe, the need for cost reduction was the primary
The greatest factor influencing alternative energy
decisions in Asia is the environmental benefits of the technology.
“Dow Corning is investigating the potential for wind power and
we’re investing significantly in solar to help make this a more viable
alternative to traditional forms of energy,’ said Cartwright.
In the last three years, Dow Corning has invested more than $2
billion to research and develop materials designed to make solar energy an accessible and
sustainable energy option globally. “This investment represents Dow
Corning’s commitment to the alternative energy arena,” said Cartwright.
“We are excited to take part in this journey of discovery and innovation, and
contribute to providing efficient choices for our customers.”
Last year, Dow Corning installed
more than 1,000 square meters of solar panels at one of its largest
manufacturing sites located in Wiesbaden, Germany. The panels are expected to
generate enough energy to satisfy the annual electricity needs of 35
households. The company is also exploring the possibility of purchasing
energy derived from wind power for its Seneffe, Belgium facility.
Survey participants were also asked about their familiarity
with the term “carbon footprint.” The results show the concept of carbon
footprinting is not widely recognized globally, however, there is a higher
level of acknowledgement in the Americas and Europe than in Asia. “Carbon
footprint is a term relatively new to most people. With the myriad of emerging
labels and requests for data in different forms, it will probably continue to
be confusing until international standards are fully developed and companies
are asked for consistent information,” said Cartwright. “To give an answer
involves complex analysis along the supply chain, and most companies probably
want to get this right rather than simply quote a number. We welcome the work
on this and look forward to standards we can all use in industry.”
As part of Dow Corning’s sustainability goals, the corporation is actively
utilizing new technology and processes to continue to improve our energy and
carbon efficiency from our existing silicone production facilities:
In the United States, Dow Corning invested more than $50
million in new manufacturing technology at the Midland, Mich.
site which will reduce carbon emissions by 20 percent.
A new manufacturing
process at Dow Corning’s Carrollton, Ky. site has led to the reduction of
carbon emissions equal to taking more than 600 cars off the road and
saving enough energy to heat nearly 500 homes.
Utilizing barges rather than road tankers to transport
certain products from Dow Corning’s Barry, Wales site to its site in Seneffe,
Belgium facility will reduce carbon emissions by 350 tons and save 112,000
liters of diesel on an annual basis.
Dow Corning also developed an online calculator to
assist other manufacturers with measuring their company’s energy and potential
CO2 savings through the use of proper machine
This international study was conducted via telephone and e-mail
with 1,000 Dow Corning customers and prospects from the Americas, Asia and
Europe. Additional results and charts illustrating the key
findings (PDF size = 160 KB) of the study are available.
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About Dow Corning
Dow Corning provides performance-enhancing solutions to serve the
diverse needs of more than 25,000 customers worldwide. A global leader in
silicon-based technology and innovation, offering more than 7,000 products and
services, Dow Corning is equally owned by
The Dow Chemical Company and Corning Incorporated. More
than half of Dow Corning’s sales are outside the United States.
About Harris Interactive®
Harris Interactive Inc. (http://www.harrisinteractive.com),
based in Rochester, New York, and London is the 13th largest and the
fastest-growing market research firm in the world, most widely known for The
Harris Poll® and for its pioneering leadership in the online market research
industry. Long recognized by its clients for delivering insights that enable
confident business decisions, the Company blends the science of innovative
research with the art of strategic consulting to deliver knowledge that leads
to measurable and enduring value.
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