HNI Corporation Receives DOE Better Project Award for self-designed air-curtains

MUSCATINE, Iowa — HNI Corporation has received a Better Project Award from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Initiative.

The Better Project Award acknowledges HNI's exceptional achievements in executing energy-efficient initiatives within its manufacturing operations, particularly concerning the optimization of paint booth ovens. Through the addition of air curtains designed by HNI, it was able to reduce oven energy demand by up to 30% per oven while also stabilizing oven temperatures. These improvements help increase efficiency, reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions, and provide a better working environment for members.

“Partners in the Better Plants Challenge are industry leaders in energy efficiency and decarbonization. As a winner of a Better Project award, HNI has demonstrated an innovative pathway to improve energy efficiency and reduce emissions that other organizations can learn from,” said Carolyn Snyder, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Buildings and Industry at the U.S. Department of Energy.

“HNI is committed to improving operations and combating climate change to create a better, more sustainable, tomorrow. HNI’s sustainability efforts are rooted in our culture of continuous improvement. We are proud of this achievement and the success of this project as we seek new and better ways to drive efficiency in our operations,” said Lisa Brunie-McDermott, HNI Director of Corporate Social Responsibility.

DOE’s Better Buildings Initiative is a market-based partnership where organizations pursue ambitious energy, waste, water, and/or greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals. They share their real-world pathways for achieving significant savings throughout their portfolios. In doing so, they inspire others, demonstrate strategies to overcome common barriers, and catalyze significant progress in energy efficiency and decarbonization.


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Larry Adams | Editor

Larry Adams is a Chicago-based writer and editor who writes about how things get done. A former wire service and community newspaper reporter, Larry is an award-winning writer with more than three decades of experience. In addition to writing about woodworking, he has covered science, metrology, metalworking, industrial design, quality control, imaging, Swiss and micromanufacturing . He was previously a Tabbie Award winner for his coverage of nano-based coatings technology for the automotive industry. Larry volunteers for the historic preservation group, the Kalo Foundation/Ianelli Studios, and the science-based group, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST).