In late 2019, Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) contacted Advanced Energy about ISO 50001 consulting. DTNA had previously earned ISO 50001 certification and Superior Energy Performance 50001™ certification at its Mount Holly truck assembly plant — it was now looking to achieve multisite ISO 50001 certification at all eight of its North American plants to meet a corporate goal.
The following plants sought certification:
- DTNA Cleveland, North Carolina
- DTNA Gastonia, North Carolina
- DTNA Mount Holly, North Carolina (for recertification)
- DTNA Portland, Oregon
- DTNA Saltillo, Mexico
- DTNA Santiago, Mexico
- Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation, Gaffney, South Carolina
- Thomas Built Buses, High Point, North Carolina
Proposal and Scope of Work
DTNA requested a proposal from Advanced Energy to provide ISO 50001 certification consulting for the eight sites. A combined funding program was established with support from both DTNA and Duke Energy, who was happy to assist one of its larger industrial customers in its pursuit of energy management. Duke Energy account executives Ronnie Young and John Millard helped set up the Duke Energy funding.
The DTNA team was led by Sandra Carter, corporate environmental manager, and Lindsey Speed Nichols, corporate environmental engineer. Dozens of additional DTNA personnel were instrumental to the endeavor as well.
A key objective for DTNA was to find a consultant who could integrate into its existing vision and culture — it did not want to have to reinvent its processes, if possible. Advanced Energy was flexible and happy to meet DTNA where it was in its energy efforts.
The work provided — led my Michael Stowe, senior energy engineer — began in March 2020 and encompassed a variety of services. Broadly, these activities included webinar trainings on ISO 50001 and the U.S. Department of Energy’s 50001 Ready™ Navigator tool, ISO 50001 internal auditor training, one-on-one site support and check-ins, creating and implementing an energy mapping template, establishing an operational controls worksheet, and developing energy-saving project review criteria.
Consulting occurred both before and during DTNA’s Stage 1 and Stage 2 third-party audits for ISO 50001 certification. Stage 1 audits involve a review of paperwork, while Stage 2 takes a deeper look at each element of a location’s energy management system and practices. The original plan was to complete many of the consulting services on site, with visits to DTNA’s local facilities, but that approach changed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately, Advanced Energy had already developed webinar trainings for ISO 50001-related opportunities, so the transition to a virtual environment was seamless.
The partnership between DTNA and Advanced Energy proved very fruitful. The energy mapping template was used by all eight manufacturing sites to determine significant energy users (SEUs), prioritize energy improvement projects and establish operational controls for SEUs and action plans. In some cases, this allowed for common energy improvement measures across all locations.
DTNA was eager to learn how it uses energy, so the mapping template was critical to breaking down processes and helping employees understand where their energy is going. With the tool developed, Advanced Energy plans to adapt it for other facilities in the future.
Working energy models for each site were designed as well, as was a full DTNA corporate rollup energy model. According to this corporate model, energy performance improved 6.4 percent in 2019 from a 2015 baseline.
In September 2020, Mounty Holly received its ISO 50001 Stage 1 and Stage 2 audits, and it earned recertification two months later. DTNA corporate had its multisite Stage 1 and Stage 2 audits in January 2021 and achieved first-time certification for its remaining seven facilities in February.
This joint effort was a win-win for all involved. Advanced Energy was able to provide consulting services in line with an organization’s expectations and needs, Duke Energy played a crucial role in supporting a large industrial customer, and DTNA built a culture of continual energy improvement at all its North American plants.
“ISO 50001 certification at all of our North American truck sites is a great achievement, and I am proud of our team,” said DTNA’s Carter. “We now have a continual energy management system that provides the information we need to reduce our energy usage per truck produced. ISO 50001 helps us meet our corporate environmental and sustainability goals on a daily basis. We are thankful for the support of partner Duke Energy and consultant Advanced Energy.”
For DTNA, next steps will include annual ISO 50001 surveillance audits and recertification audits every three years. Advanced Energy is helping with that process, too, with internal site audits that are also a requirement of ISO 50001. Advanced Energy looks forward to many more years working with DTNA’s team and energy management system.