PPG and the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers (NATM) named Alum-Line Trailers of Cresco, Iowa, as the recipient of the 2017 Green Manufacturing Award. The award was presented to Alum-Line Trailers president Gary Gooder and director of marketing Sydney Gooder by NATM president Greg Snyder at the 29th annual NATM national convention and trade show held Feb. 15–17 at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Alum-Line, a family-owned company, builds a variety of commercial trailers as well as truck bodies and tool boxes; it is known for the quality of its custom aluminum products.

According to Ron Yarnell, PPG OEM sales manager, the Green Manufacturing Award was established to recognize the NATM member with the year’s best solution or innovation that delivers a positive impact on the environment. “The award is intended to encourage NATM members to implement ecologically sound programs,” said Yarnell. “We are all accountable for how our actions affect the world around us. Environmental sensitivity, sustainability, doing the right things—it’s all more important than ever. Companies that take this mission to heart and make the necessary improvements reflect well on our industry and our society. Alum-Line is one of those companies.”

“It was a great honor to receive this year’s Green Award,” said Gary Gooder. “As long- term members of the NATM, this award sparked our interest to work even harder to have our company and facilities as environmentally friendly and energy efficient as possible. These practices are never-ending and popular with our employees, and we will continue to add additional green practices every year.”

The initiatives that companies may employ include process or equipment improvements, emissions reduction, recycling techniques, material utilization, design advancement and other ecologically responsible actions. Award applicants are required to provide documentation of their work demonstrating the results of their efforts. Entries are judged by the NATM executive committee.

Alum-Line was selected for the 2017 award because of the steps the company has taken to improve efficiencies and sustainability awareness. In his presentation, Snyder noted Alum-Line’s environmental actions:

  • In 2014 Alum-Line installed solar panels on two of the company’s largest manufacturing buildings. The facilities have since generated 63.5 million watt hours of clean energy—equivalent to planting 1,150 trees, running a refrigerator for 38.6 years, or powering a 13-watt CFL bulb for 558 years.

  • A solar-powered manufacturing building with efficient floor heat and good urethane insulation was completed in 2014. Expansions totaling more than 70,000 square feet have been set up to use floor heat. Converting all lighting to efficient LED began in 2014, saving a total of 35,542 kilowatt hours of electrical energy to date, with the project more than 80 percent complete.

  • The company promotes in-house recycling by educating its employees, customers and the community and by setting a good example: Alum-Line recycles used tires, wood pallets and scrap metal to local vendors. In addition to saving trees through reduced use and recycling of paper products, Alum-Line planted nearly two acres of new trees on its property this year.

  • Alum-Line reduces scrap by using materials according to comprehensive waste reduction measures. When usable and appropriate, scrap is kept for future builds.

  • Alum-Line maintains its own transportation department and organizes deliveries specifically for efficiency to reduce fuel and oil consumption.

The Green Manufacturing award includes a cash gift that is directed to a charitable organization of the winner’s choice. Alum-Line selected the Howard County Agricultural and Historical Society in Cresco as the recipient. Several trailer-related companies including Optronics International, Dexter Axle, Lavanture Products Company, the Carlstar Group and Kenda Tire joined major sponsor PPG in supporting the award.

The NATM represents manufacturers of light- and medium-duty trailers as well as a range of suppliers to the industry. The association has more than 800 member companies in the United States, Canada, Mexico and other countries. The NATM is dedicated to improving trailer safety and performance and acts as a voice for manufacturers and their suppliers when issues of trailer safety and regulation are considered.

PPG offers a full range of coating technologies for the commercial transportation and light industrial markets, including polyurethanes, alkyds, epoxies, polyurea, waterborne, pretreatment chemicals and powder coatings. PPG coatings products are marketed under several brand names including DELFLEET® Evolution, DELFLEET ESSENTIAL®, Commercial Performance Coatings and AMERCOAT®.

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