SC Johnson: Reducing Its Footprint Through Clean, Renewable Energy (2014) |
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SC Johnson: Reducing Its Footprint Through Clean, Renewable Energy (2014)


SC Johnson
1525 Howe Street Racine, WI 53403
United States

SC Johnson, headquartered in Racine, Wisconsin, is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of products for household cleaning as well as for home storage, air care, pest control, and shoe care. The 128-year-old company, which generates $9 billion in sales annually, employs nearly 13,000 people globally and sells products in virtually every country.

A leader in renewable energy initiatives, SC Johnson is committed to reducing its carbon footprint around the globe through the use of cleaner, renewable energy. “As a family company, SC Johnson has long been committed to reducing its environmental footprint, and investing in renewable energy is a critical part of our business strategy,” says Kelly M. Semrau, SC Johnson’s Chief Sustainability Officer.

For more than 20 years, SC Johnson has set environmental goals every five years. Since 2000 the company has lowered its greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by 40.2 percent and reduced global manufacturing waste by 62 percent. It aims to reduce its global energy consumption and get 33 percent of its total global energy from renewable sources by the year 2016.

In January 2013, RENEW Wisconsin honored SC Johnson as the Renewable Energy Customer-Generator of the Year for its efforts in increasing renewable energy use to 30 percent in its global manufacturing operations. The company’s exploration of renewable sources includes wind power, cogeneration, biofuel, and solar power.

Wind Power

SC Johnson has been purchasing wind power since 2008 to provide electricity for its Bay City, Michigan, factory, replacing almost half the factory’s annual purchase of coal-fired electricity and helping to cut about 28,000 metric tons of GHG emissions per year. In 2013, SC Johnson increased wind power purchases by 50 percent, expecting an additional 14,000 metric tons of GHG reduction annually at Bay City for a total of 42,000 fewer metric tons of emissions.

In December 2012, the company installed two 415-foot, 1.5 megawatt (MW) wind turbines at Waxdale, the company’s largest global manufacturing facility, in Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin. These turbines have a new design that generates more energy with lower maintenance cost. The new turbines produce about eight million kWh of electricity annually while cutting 6,000 metric tons of GHG emissions.

SC Johnson has also launched wind power projects at its other sites, including Lowell in Arkansas, Racine in Wisconsin, as well as in Mexico and the Netherlands.


SC Johnson employs two cogeneration systems at Waxdale, combining landfill methane gas and clean-burning natural gas to generate electricity. This cuts 47,250 metric tons of GHG emissions annually. Combined with the two new wind turbines, Waxdale can produce, on average, 100 percent of its on-site electrical energy.

With less dependence on fossil fuel use, SC Johnson aims to reduce emissions from its operations globally by 48 percent, compared to its 2000 baseline output, by 2016. Also, it has cut 105,734 tons of CO2 emissions from its US freight operations since 2007, when it joined the EPA’s voluntary SmartWay Transport Partnership, an initiative to help businesses track—and improve—the energy use and carbon emissions record of their supply chain  and make better transport decisions.

In line with renewable energy exploration, SC Johnson is working towards zero waste being sent to the landfill through reuse, recycling, and, ultimately, through disposal without the use of incineration. It aims to reduce its global manufacturing waste by 70 percent by 2016. Between 2000 and 2012, SC Johnson reduced waste by 62 percent.

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