Nypro Inc. plans to have all of its packaging plants run on renewable energy sources someday and is taking the first step in that direction by investing more than $1 million in a pilot project at its Mebane, N.C., injection molding and assembly facility.
The project, which is already under way, will be one of the largest commercial projects in North Carolina, according to Paul Kayser, group president for Nypro Packaging.
There are two key elements to our renewable project. First we will install a solar farm covering the roof of our facility in Mebane, N.C., which will generate a significant portion of the energy required to power the operation. Additionally we will install wind turbines adjacent to our plant, he said in a news release.
The pilot project will help Nypro determine the most feasible way of adapting renewable energy and will be used as the model for other plants.
Our long-term goal is for all our Nypro Packaging operations to be powered by renewable energy, he said.
Nypro employs about 300 in Mebane, a facility used for the packaging and health-care industries.
The project is a work in progress, according to Al Cotton, Nypro's director of corporate communications, and will be operational by summer. He said the company is working with various consultants and state officials to determine the right mix to use and will adjust as work progresses.
The facility is in an industrial park in a flat, open area that could be conducive to solar and wind power usage.
Cotton said the panels will cover the roof, but that number of wind turbines is yet to be determined.
The firm said it has long been involved with sustainability. In 1988, Nypro's headquarters in Clinton, Mass., was one of the first plastic companies to adopt a policy of no waste to the landfill. Everything has to be recycled.
We're very excited to be making these initial investments in solar and wind energy. These projects align with Nypro's long-term commitment to decrease greenhouse gas emissions through improved operationally efficiency and the use of clean, renewable energy sources. These investments are good for Nypro as they are good for our communities, our environment and our customers, said Barry Charbonneau, the firm's manager of environment and sustainability.
In 2009 Nypro invested $1 million in solar energy startup Morgan Solar Inc. of Toronto. But Cotton said that expenditure is not related to the Mebane project.