The industrial sector accounts for more than 30 percent of the nation’s total natural gas demand. So it’s no surprise that industrial customers like Minneapolis-based Consolidated Container Company keep a watchful eye on their energy costs.
Consolidated Container has reconditioned, remanufactured, and distributed industrial containers for its clients throughout the Midwest for more than a century. The company’s natural gas budget represents 4 to 7 percent of its input costs – a substantial expense.
|"Even if we could save money using other competitors, we choose to stay with CES. We're in this for the long run and we get the kind of local service that others can't match."
President, Consolidated Container Company
In 2008, the company began noticing higher natural gas bills for one if its accounts, incorrectly attributing the rise in consumption to a change in its own operations. Fortunately, Consolidated’s close business relationship with CenterPoint Energy Services (CES) helped it get to the real reason for the higher costs.
CES helps customer discover source of inaccurate gas-use measurement
Consolidated asked a CenterPoint Energy Services account executive to study the consumption patterns. He subsequently suggested an engineering firm that could look deeper into what might be causing the increasing costs. A complete plant audit revealed that the natural gas utility meter was incorrectly recording gas use due to a misapplied pressure correction factor.
CES was able to help Consolidated Container obtain a refund of nearly $100,000 for the overbilled gas use. Additionally, CES assisted in consolidating all of the plant’s meters into a single large volume meter, qualifying the company for transportation service and creating additional savings. CES even helped the customer qualify for a utility rebate based on equipment upgrades the plant was making.
Consolidated Container President William Dworsky said, “Even if we could save money using other competitors, we choose to stay with CES. We’re in this for the long run and we get the kind of local service that others can’t match. It’s a positive working relationship with CenterPoint Energy.”