SC Johnson cuts VOCs in aerosol product manufacturing

3 Min Read
SC Johnson cuts VOCs in aerosol product manufacturing



SC Johnson Waxdale plant

SC Johnson's newest aerosol production line, which uses innovative compressed gas technology to manufacture Glade and Pledge aerosol products, has reduced volatile organic compounds (VOCs) by approximately six million pounds in its first year of operation. This is the equivalent of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from 1,600 passenger vehicles per year—or the CO2 emissions from 915,000 gallons of gasoline consumed*. 

"SC Johnson has a long history of reducing environmental impacts from the manufacture and use of our products," says Fisk Johnson, chairman/CEO of SC Johnson. "Moving to compressed gas technology—which uses nitrogen sourced from the air we breathe—provides tangible results. This is just one step of many that we continue to take to reduce our impact on the world."

The compressed gas line is located at the company's largest global manufacturing facility, Waxdale. The 2.2 million sq ft facility is located in Mount Pleasant, WI. The products made on the line, which ship globally, use nitrogen, a natural propellant that is comprised of about 80 percent air and is sourced from the air we breathe. The company is looking to expand its use of this technology to other products and facilities. As one of the world's largest manufacturers of aerosols, the impact could be significant. 

Manufacturing made better with renewable energy
Since 2000, SC Johnson has reduced its GHG emissions from all of the company's manufacturing factories by 26.2 percent. Leading the way was the construction of two green energy cogeneration turbines which power the Waxdale facility. Since 2005, the facility has been powered by waste methane and natural gas, generating the daily base load of electricity and between half and all the steam needed for the plant's operations. 

Also contributing to the reduction is the company's commitment to wind power. In 2008, SC Johnson agreed to source 46 percent of the electricity for its Bay City, MI, factory from wind energy, replacing almost half the factory's annual purchase of coal-fired electricity with a clean, renewable source. 

The 2009 construction of an 80-meter-tall wind turbine helps power SC Johnson's European manufacturing facility in Mijdrecht, Netherlands. The turbine produces about 5.5 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year—eliminating approximately 3,800 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually. 

And at the company headquarters in Racine, WI, three SWIFT mini-wind turbines were installed in 2010 as a pilot program, with the goal of reducing GHG emissions while raising awareness that renewable energy can be used in urban settings. In their first year of operation, the mini-turbines have reduced GHGs by 580 pounds.

The company has a long history of doing what's right for people and the planet. Other examples include:


•The 2012 introduction of the company's Exclusive Fragrance Palette, a comprehensive list of the fragrance ingredients found in SC Johnson products. The list is accessible to consumers through, the company's enhanced ingredient disclosure website. The goal is to help families learn more about what's in the company's products they use in their homes every day like Windex, Glade and Pledge. 

•Last year, SC Johnson launched the Windex Mini concentrated refill pouch, in hopes to revolutionize the use of cleaning concentrates. Concentrates use less packaging, decrease shipping impacts and reduce waste that ends up in landfills. The company recently announced an expanded concentrate offer.


•In 2001, SC Johnson internally developed its ingredient selection process called its Greenlist process. SC Johnson's Greenlist process classifies raw materials according to their impact on the environment and human health. The company's goal with the Greenlist process is to increase year-on-year the percentage of ingredients used in its products that are rated "Better" or "Best" by the Greenlist process. In 2001, the total "Better" or "Best" ingredients by weight of raw materials used in the company's products was 18 percent. In 2010, this reached 51 percent. SC Johnson's Greenlist process is patented by the company. SC Johnson received the Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge award in 2006 for its Greenlist process.


Source: SC Johnson



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