Mining is an energy-intensive business—electricity and natural gas account for nearly 30 percent of the cost to produce a ton of sand. Reducing energy and Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions is important to control our costs and help limit climate change. Therefore, Covia makes it a priority to manage energy consumption and GHG emissions as we seek to Do Good. Do Well. Act Responsibly.
Covia shares responsibility for managing energy use among our teams. Our plant managers track energy use at each of our facilities, and our Best Practices SD Team and engineering group conduct periodic audits to identify future improvement projects. We also regularly deploy our Operations Optimization Team to conduct an onsite, 12-week innovation boot camp, which includes a dedicated energy work stream — see the Product and Process Innovation section of this site for more information on the Bright Site Program (BSP).
Covia is committed to protecting the climate by monitoring and managing our GHG emissions. We collect Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions and energy use data at all mines and processing facilities, and we are in the process of unifying data management systems into a new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system.
Our procurement department works with plant management to secure fuel agreements that give us the flexibility to adjust to market conditions. This team also negotiates with local utilities on energy and emissions-savings projects, such as renewable energy purchase agreements.
Covia consistently looks for ways to decrease energy use in our operations. For example, drying sand and heating sand for resin coating are our two most energy-intensive processes. We optimize energy usage by installing heat exchangers and balancing temperature controls on dryers. For example, we realized nearly $70,000 in annual savings by optimizing a single dryer in 2018. We also invest in process improvements that decrease maintenance, rental, and energy costs, which typically also reduce GHG emissions.
To sequester a portion of our GHG emissions, Covia funded the planting of over 81,000 trees in 2018. Our employees planted approximately five percent of the trees through our volunteer events, while Covia financed the planting of the remaining trees via third parties.
The data shown below represents our manufacturing facilities, not our terminal or administrative sites. We focus on energy consumption from our mines and processing facilities because it represents the vast majority of our use. In future reporting, with the help of our new enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, we plan to expand this reporting.
Fuel Use By Type
Natural Gas (103 cu.m.)
Oil/Diesel (103 cu.m.)
Energy Consumption & Intensity
|Energy Consumption (GWh)||4,522.1|
|Energy Intensity (energy use in MWH/tons sold)||0.17|
Scope 1 and 2 Emissions (Thousands of Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalents)
Scope 1 and 2 GHG Emissions Intensity
|Scope 1 and 2 GHG Emissions Intensity (metric tons/tons sold)||0.06|
Covia remains committed to improving our energy and GHG emissions intensity, as well as sequestering a portion of our previous year’s GHG emissions. To advance our progress, we will continue investing in more efficient equipment and exploring opportunities to increase our use of renewable energy sources through power purchase agreements.