Owens Corning is five years into our second set of 10 year environmental footprint goals. We have made significant progress yet we continue to look for opportunities to shrink our environmental footprint through a continuous reduction of resource use and environmental emissions from our operations. Our goals are for the period of 2010 to 2020 and based on what matters most given our specific operations.

We focus on six key aspects:

  • Received the Energy Star Partner of the Year award from the EPA for Energy Management during 2015
  • Reduced our primary energy intensity and consumed energy intensity by 17% since 2010
  • Reporting a 3% reduction of absolute consumed energy since 2014
  • Implemented over 70 energy reduction projects in 2015 that will deliver an estimated annual savings of over 92,000 MWH and 34,500MT of GHG emissions. This amount includes capital programs as well as low cost/no cost initiatives.
  • For the second year, Owens Corning has verified all energy through SCS Global Services. The verification was conducted in compliance with ISO 14064-3. Energy information was verified under reasonable assurance.
  • In October 2015, Owens Corning announced it established new 2020 sustainability goals to reduce greenhouse gas intensity by 50% from our 2010 baseline. At the same time, we announced the completion of purchase agreements for 250 megawatts of wind energy, the largest of any industrial company in the world at the time.
  • Reported a 26% reduction in its absolute scope 1 emissions compared to the baseline year (2010) and a corresponding 8% absolute reduction from 2014. On an intensity basis our scope 1 emissions are down 47% since 2010.
  • Reported a 9% reduction in its absolute Scope 2 emissions compared to our baseline year of 2010, and a 9% absolute reduction compared to 2014. Our scope 2 emissions have declined by 22% since our 2010 base year.
  • For the third year, Owens Corning has verified scope 1 and scope 2 greenhouse gas information through SCS Global Services. The verification was conducted in compliance with ISO 14064-3 under reasonable assurance.
  • In 2015, under limited assurance Owens Corning verified our scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions through SCS Global Services. The verification was conducted in compliance with ISO 14064-3.
  • Achieved a 17% percent reduction in PM2.5 intensity emissions from our 2010 baseline year, surpassing our 2020 goal
  • Achieved a 4% reduction in absolute PM2.5 emissions since 2014
  • The residential EcoTouch® insulation conversion has driven much of the improvement to date. As evidenced with the conversion, the key to achieving further gains will be capturing more synergies between greening our products and greening our operations.
  • For more detailed information please view our 2015 GRI G4 Report
  • Note: Owens Corning defines Toxic Air Emissions to include the following: hexavalent chromium, formaldehyde, manganese, polycyclic aromatic compounds and ammonia. This shift in focus for air emissions acknowledges our past successes and our concern for pollutants that carry greater air quality concerns.
  • In October 2015, Owens Corning announced it established new 2020 sustainability goals to reduce toxic air emissions intensity by 75% from our 2010 baseline.
  • Achieved a 55% absolute reduction in Toxic Air Emissions and 66% reduction in Toxic Air Intensity since 2010
  • Achieved a 1% reduction in Toxic Air Emission over 2014 results
  • For more detailed information please view our 2015 GRI G4 Report
  • Achieved a 14% reduction in waste intensity and 2% absolute reduction of waste to landfill from our base year 2010
  • Waste to landfill reduction is our largest challenge. We continue to pursue opportunities to not only find value added opportunities for reuse and recycling of our waste, but also continue to focus on reducing waste generation at the source. Owens Corning is actively researching opportunities to reuse our own waste back into our production processes and working with outside parties on potential recycling efforts. This remains a significant challenge going forward and one that we are focused on achieving. We have developed internal processes to track and manage all waste streams and their ultimate disposition at all our locations globally to ensure we can share best practices and review opportunities to shift waste from the landfill to a diverted outlet.
  • We recognize our facilities globally on their level of diversion from the landfill regardless of production volumes. We believe this is an important measure so that we properly recognize facilities where the absolute amount of waste going to landfill has been reduced in addition to our intensity measures. Facilities are recognized at three different levels: Silver at 80% diversion from the landfill; Gold at 98% diversion from the landfill; and Platinum at 100% diversion from the landfill.
  • For more detailed information please view our 2015 GRI G4 Report
  • Achieve a 32% decrease in our water intensity and a 13% decrease in absolute water usage from our baseline of 2010
  • Reduce water intensity by 7% from 2014 through a combination of low/no cost water efficiency efforts and more significant capital investment projects
  • Our Kansas City, Kansas, U.S., insulation plant has cut both its absolute water use and water intensity over half since 2010. Efforts to reuse water and minimize municipal water use have decreased both usage and costs associated with purchasing city water. For the sixth year in a row, the plant has earned the Kansas Water Environment Association's Gold Award.
  • Owens Corning continues to perform analysis on water stress using the WBCSD Global Water Tool to understand our risk areas and develop steps for mitigation and management.
  • For more detailed information please view our 2015 GRI G4 Report

To assist in our reduction efforts, Owens Corning implemented an enterprise wide software solution to better manage our environmental sustainability data and ensure our facilities have data to make decisions and are informed of their impact on our goals. The system combines quality assurance and data capture capabilities while allowing a streamlined external audit process. To ensure consistency and standardization, Owens Corning follows World Resource Institute (WRI) Corporate Accounting & Reporting Standard for all our environmental reporting. We report under operational control.

The company's six aspects are shown in the footprint graphic below. The 2010 baseline year is shown as the dark blue outside border of the spider chart, representing 100 percent of each aspect. The pink center footprint indicates the company's 10-year intensity goals. The light blue footprint represents our status at the end of 2014.

Environmental Footprint 2020 Goal 2010 - 2015 Progress
Energy (Primary) 20% intensity reduction 17% intensity reduction
Energy (Consumed) No intensity goal 17% intensity reduction
Greenhouse Gas GHG 50% intensity reduction 41% intensity reduction
Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) 15% intensity reduction 17% intensity reduction
Toxic Air Emissions (TAE) 75% intensity reduction 66% intensity reduction
Waste to Landfill 70% intensity reduction 14% intensity reduction
Water Consumption 35% intensity reduction 32% intensity reduction

The chart indicates that Owens Corning has reduced its intensity in each of the six aspects and has now met its 2020 goals for greenhouse gases (GHG) and toxic air emissions (TAE).

Actual Environmental Impacts, 2010 and 2015

This table shows the actual values of the monitored parameters in 2010 and 2015.

Emission or Resource
Year Consumed Energy
(millions of MwH)
(millions of TPY)
PM 2.5
(thousands of TPY)
Waste to Landfill
(thousands of TPY)
(millions of m3)
2010 8.3 4.7 2.2 1.0 267 11.2
2015 8.4 3.7 2.1 0.4 261 9.8

Primary Energy — Total energy required to generate, transmit, and distribute electricity from the power generation source as well as energy sources used onsite such as fossil fuels

Consumed Energy — Energy used onsite such as the electricity consumed on site and fossil fuel usage

GHG — Greenhouse gases, defined as gases which contribute toward the Greenhouse effect, including carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, HFCs, and HCFCs

PM 2.5 Particulate matter, defined and reported according to regional government requirements.

TAE— Toxic air emissions include hexavalent chromium, formaldehyde, manganese, polycylic aromatic compounds and ammonia emissions.

Waste-to-Landfill — all types of solid wastes going to landfill for disposal

Water — Water that enters the plant; sources include local utilities and wells

TPY — Metric tons per year

m3 Cubic Meters

MwH — Megawatt hours


1Intensity is normalized based on product produced.