Energy Star Industrial Partner Meeting recognizes Georgia-Pacific for Top Project for efforts to improve energy efficiency at its paper mills, and GP's Leaf River, Brewton mills earn Energy Star certifications; GP also named 2023 SmartWay High Performer

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ATLANTA , November 7, 2023 (press release) –

Georgia-Pacific’s commitment to environmental stewardship and continuously improving energy efficiency has resulted in several recent awards from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Two GP facilities received ENERGY STAR® certifications for 2023, and another helped GP earn recognition for a Top Project at the 2023 ENERGY STAR Industrial Partner Meeting. Meanwhile, the company was also named a 2023 SmartWay High Performer.

ENERGY STAR Industrial Partner Meeting Recognizes GP for Top Project

The ENERGY STAR® program recognized the work of GP, Flint Hills Resources and their parent company Koch Industries for a Top Project at the 2023 ENERGY STAR Industrial Partner Meeting. The recognition comes for their efforts to improve energy efficiency and reduce corrosion in Koch manufacturing assets.

Together with FHR, GP tested a wide range of insulation options to protect manufacturing equipment and found a solution: HPC® ceramic insulation spray. HPC reduces heat loss, prevents corrosion, and can be applied to equipment that operates at temperatures up to 1,200 degrees F.

GP first tested HPC on a condensate receiver at its Naheola paper mill in Pennington, Alabama. The condensate receiver captured excess steam and condensation produced by a paper machine. GP then moved forward with coating a full digester at Naheola with HPC in March 2020. Digesters cook wood chips in chemicals at high temperatures to obtain the pulp fibers used to make paper products.

The fully insulated digester reduced heat loss by 49% and saved Naheola an estimated $332,000 in energy costs annually. It also improved the quality of the cooking process by allowing the digester to better maintain its internal temperature. The HPC also protected the digester from corrosion. The Naheola digester had already begun to experience corrosion, a common issue for digesters of its age. The HPC hermetically sealed the digester to keep out any new moisture, so when some of the HPC was removed in 2022 to allow for repairs to the digester, there was no evidence of new corrosion.

GP is already using HPC at other mills following the results of this experiment. In addition to the energy savings, HPC’s ability to protect manufacturing assets from corrosion could save GP and FHR millions of dollars in equipment replacement costs.

ENERGY STAR® Industrial Partner Meeting Top Projects are selected by partner companies across manufacturing industries that want to learn more about the projects at the annual event.

Leaf River, Brewton Earn ENERGY STAR Certifications

GP has also earned additional recognition from the EPA’s ENERGY STAR programs this year. GP’s Leaf River Cellulose mill in New Augusta, Mississippi, is the first paper pulp mill in the U.S. to receive EPA’s ENERGY STAR certification. The Leaf River facility uses less energy to produce a ton of pulp than 75% of plants with identical characteristics, putting it in the 90th percentile of plants evaluated by ENERGY STAR.

The company’s containerboard mill in Brewton, Alabama, also received ENERGY STAR certification. Combined the facilities have saved 5,732,130 MMBtus in 2022 alone, enough to power 150,011 homes for a year, and both have been certified for three years.

The EPA works with manufacturing companies through ENERGY STAR to improve energy efficiency, allowing the agency and industry corporate energy managers to work together to build unique and helpful energy management tools.

GP Named 2023 SmartWay High Performer

The company was also named by the EPA as a SmartWay High Performer for 2023, a recognition that the company has earned five times, along with several other awards, since GP became a partner in 2009.

Moving products from one location to another often requires using multiple transport systems. The result is increased fuel consumption that leads to more air pollution, negatively impacting health and the environment. GP actively works to lessen the impact of its business on the environment through its stewardship framework. The company utilizes software that gathers and analyzes data to identify optimized travel routes, cutting fuel consumption and decreasing air pollution.

Less than 5% of the EPA’s SmartWay shippers meet the emissions and carrier selection criteria to make the SmartWay High Performer list for shippers. EPA’s SmartWay Transport Partnership helps companies and organizations achieve their freight supply chain sustainability goals by providing credible tools, data, and standards—at no cost—for measuring, benchmarking, and improving environmental performance.

These recognitions are an affirmation of how GP strives to continuously improve performance to create sustainable outcomes that benefit society, creating value for people while using fewer resources.

Learn more about GP’s approach to environmental stewardship. To learn more about energy efficiency and ENERGY STAR®, visit


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