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07 Jun

What is a “Green” Product?

Hello, this is Saurabh, Marketing Engineer at BAC. Let’s talk about green products and BAC! You might be thinking, “Oh great, here comes another marketing campaign claiming their products to be environmentally friendly, just for the political circus and to fatten up their wallets.” But, before I do the expected, let’s think about what is considered a ‘green’ product. The vast majority considers a product to be a green if it helps reduce the carbon foot print and the operating cost. While this is true, these are just two characteristics of a green product, and there are many more…

Have you ever considered procurement processes, incorporation of recycled material, and a vibrant local economy as components of a green product? We need to adapt a holistic approach and consider all of these components in order to classify a product as green.

Having spent a majority of my professional career in the aviation industry, I am still learning the intricacies of evaporative cooling products. But let me share my knowledge of how BAC products are green. You knew the marketing spiel was coming, and here it is!

1.     Evaporative cooling is much more effective than conventional dry cooling. Why? Simple, water has much higher heat capacity than air, so it is able to carry more heat per unit mass than air. Evaporation removes energy by using energy and mass transfer principles. Higher efficiency implies lower energy consumption, reducing operating cost and the carbon foot print of the unit. Evaporative cooling is BAC’s core competency and is the basis of every single product line. Therefore a majority of BAC’s products are inherently green.

2.     Recycled components are much more environmentally friendly than virgin materials. According to the Institute for Lifecycle Environment Assessment, ILEA, recycled aluminum costs 84% less and requires 96% less energy to process than virgin aluminum. A similar relationship holds for steel and copper. BAC uses more than 64% recycled content by weight in the manufacturing process. Inclusion of recycled components makes BAC products cost effective and environmentally friendly, classifying them as green products.

3.     Water consumption is another component of green classification. BAC towers offer high efficiency drift eliminators and superior inlet louvers to reduce make-up water requirements. BAC’s advanced non-corrosive materials of construction, such as TriArmor®, allow higher cycles of concentration, increasing the useful water life and reducing water consumption. Finally, products such as the HXV, allow adiabatic pre-cooling and dry operation, further reducing water consumption.

4.     Procurement processes also have a major impact on green classification. Local sourcing and manufacturing reduce transportation requirements and drive local economies. A majority of the components in a BAC cooling tower are locally manufactured. This process ensures a vibrant economy by creating jobs, economies of scale and qualifying products as green. You are probably thinking, how are economy and local jobs related to green? Well, ever heard of poverty premium? Poverty premium refers to the people’s inability to purchase more expensive energy efficient equipment and clean fuels due to lower incomes. Local jobs provide resources (money) to purchase energy efficient appliances, windows and cars, creating a healthy and green environment.

This is only the tip of an iceberg. Browse BAC’s Knowledge Center for white papers, flyers and brochures. BAC products can be classified as being green various different ways. I am sure you have interesting opinions about green products and what qualifies a product as such, and I would love to hear your opinion. What can corporate America, and more specifically BAC, do better?

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