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Energy savings at Layfield Group boost profitability and reputation

Image of Dave Brandle, Layfield Group
Dave Brandle, maintenance and project manager at Layfield Group says Power Smart programs have helped reduce the cost of energy-efficient upgrades, boosted profitability and enhanced the company's reputation.

Layfield Group partners with BC Hydro to maximize energy savings

Twenty years ago, Layfield Group was a small industrial company that relied mostly on one man, Maintenance and Project Manager Dave Brandle, to help save energy in its Richmond plant.

But as the plastics manufacturer has grown, Layfield has partnered with BC Hydro Power Smart to ensure maximum energy savings in all of its B.C. holdings.

Layfield makes a range of products that help other companies manage their environmental impact. These include impermeable liners that act as containment for oil and gas wells, landfill, waste water treatment and more.

Working with BC Hydro Power Smart has helped the company reduce the cost of energy-efficient upgrades of systems needed for manufacturing, including its compressed air and chilled-water systems.

Compressor and lighting upgrades reduce energy and cut electricity costs

The company upgraded its air compressor so that the machine runs at a variable speed and produces just the right amount of air when needed without wasting energy.

"It's matching the load of whatever we need so we're not wasting money or energy to make compressed air we don't use," Brandle says. The addition of a new extruder, which is used to manufacture a geomembrane product for a variety of industries, could result in savings of 1.8 GWh/year.

Multiple lighting and other systems upgrades undertaken not only at Layfield's main manufacturing facility, but also at its office spaces and in a new warehouse could result in a further reduction of 260,000-kilowatt hours per year.

By working with BC Hydro Power Smart, Layfield is moving toward a more sustainable, more energy efficient future with long-term rewards. "We did a plant redesign, and we looked at all of our current systems, so basically the whole plant became Power Smart," Brandle says.

He estimates that the company's electricity bill would be 30 or 40 per cent higher without the Power Smart programs.

Smart energy practices boost profitability and company reputation

Besides saving money now on its energy bills, Layfield's partnership with BC Hydro Power Smart is part of a long-term strategy to maximize energy potential and savings as it grows.

The company is not only seeing the benefit of a boost in profits from its smart energy practices, but also in its reputation.

"We partner with quite a few food companies," Brandle says. "And a lot of them want to know that the company they're dealing with is ensuring that it's doing whatever it can to reduce its footprint on the earth."

One company was so impressed with Layfield's efforts to curb its energy use that they signed on as a customer.

"Now we tell potential clients, we're not flooding the market with plastic, we're doing it in a selective way. And here's what we're doing in our own process to reduce energy use."