May 22, 2013 | Valley Forge, PA USA

U.S. Department of Energy Recognizes Saint-Gobain for National Leadership in the Better Buildings Challenge

Saint-Gobain is on track to meet its goal of reducing energy consumption by 25% across 118 U.S. plants by 2020.

Saint-Gobain, the world's largest building materials company, was recognized today by the U.S. Department of Energy for its commitment to energy efficiency and leadership in the first year of the Better Buildings Challenge. Launched by President Obama in December 2011, the goal of the Better Buildings Challenge is to improve the energy efficiency of American commercial and institutional buildings and industrial plants by 20 percent or more by 2020. Saint-Gobain reduced its energy intensity by 3 percent in the first year of the initiative, putting the company on track to meet the President's goal by 2020.

To date, more than 110 organizations representing more than 2 billion square feet of commercial and industrial real estate have joined the Better Buildings Challenge and committed to share portfolio-wide energy consumption data, showcase their cutting-edge projects that demonstrate significant energy savings and share their approaches to overcoming barriers within the marketplace. Saint-Gobain is among 11 other manufacturing companies representing over 300 plants that are participating in the industrial component of the Challenge – the Better Buildings, Better Plants Challenge.

As a Better Buildings, Better Plants Challenge partner, Saint-Gobain has pledged a 25 percent reduction in energy consumption across its 118 U.S. plants representing over 20 million square feet of building space by 2020.

"At Saint-Gobain, we believe we can do well by doing good, and energy conservation is paramount to that belief," said John Crowe, President and CEO of Saint-Gobain and its largest North American subsidiary, CertainTeed Corporation. "For us, reducing energy consumption goes beyond good business sense; it drives innovation and most importantly, it protects natural resources in the communities in which our plants operate and our employees and customers live."

Saint-Gobain reduced its energy use by implementing a wide range of process improvements and energy management practices. The corporate energy management program is focused on energy assessments along with an ongoing effort to improve monitoring and measurement of energy through metering and submetering enhancements. Energy efficiency projects undertaken at plants include but are not limited to changing to LED lighting, upgrading air and water systems and installing motion light sensors, programmable thermostats and high-efficiency motors.

"Through the Better Plants Challenge, our Partners are breaking through barriers to reducing energy intensity and achieving lasting results that save money and create jobs," said David Danielson, Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. "We applaud these Partners for their leadership in making their organizations more energy-efficient, which keeps American businesses competitive."

According to the Department of Energy, each year the United States spends about $200 billion just to power commercial buildings – and another $200 billion to power industrial facilities. Together, commercial and industrial buildings account for roughly half of the nation's energy use and more than 40 percent of our carbon emissions. In many buildings, these costs can be reduced by 20 percent or more through various energy-efficiency measures and approaches.

"We are honored the Department of Energy has recognized the energy-efficiency initiatives at our plants where we manufacture construction materials that enable people around the world to live more efficiently and comfortably," continued Crowe. For more information on the Better Buildings Challenge and Saint-Gobain's participation in the Challenge, please visit

About Saint-Gobain in North America

Saint-Gobain, the world's largest building materials company, has its North American headquarters in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. As the world leader in sustainable habitat, Saint-Gobain is committed to inventing solutions to help professionals and communities around the world build and renovate comfortable, healthy, economical and energy-efficient buildings. The company has more than 265 locations in North America and approximately 19,000 employees. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain reported sales of approximately $7.9 billion in 2012.

Recognized as a 2009 and 2010 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Saint-Gobain earned the 2011, 2012 and 2013 ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award, the highest level of recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. For more information about Saint-Gobain in North America, connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.

Press Contacts:

Saint-Gobain in North America:
Dina Silver Pokedoff, APR
610-341-7031 (office)
484-919-2103 (mobile) 

Brownstein Group for Saint-Gobain in North America:
Laura Van De Pette, APR
267-238-4118 (office)
215-833-3458 (mobile)