I was visiting the Black Bear Bottling Group plant in Oak Creek WI a few weeks ago to get information for this month’s story in Packaging Digest, and president Pete Caruso was telling me about their efforts in sustainability. We were walking through their warehouse, and he pointed up to what I thought were electric lights, and he explained these were really solar units. It turned out that he had 30 Apollo solar light pipes from Orion Energy Systems Inc. (www.oriones.com), each of which Orion says can replace a 465-watt metal halide light fixture. The light pipes consist of an acrylic dome on the roof that collects the light and reflects it down an aluminum pipe into the room below. The Apollo units were installed by Great Lakes Roofing (www.greatlakesroofing.net).
Orion also supplies a system that measures the amount of light coming from the light pipes and adjusts the electric lights to provide the set amount of total light in the room. The company received the prestigious 2008 Platts Global Energy Award for this integrated energy management system, which permanently reduces light related electricity consumption when replacing traditional high-intensity discharge ighting systems. The award recognizes the company that has made “the single most innovative technology advance in the area of green technology,” according to Platts. Orion says that users of the integrated system have experienced light-related energy cost reductions of 50 to 80 percent without compromising their lighting needs.
President Obama is scheduled to visit Orion Energy Systems Inc. this coming Wednesday (Jan. 26) when he visits Manitowoc, WI.
“The best executive is one who has sense enough to pick good people to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” Theodore Roosevelt