ENERGY STAR Energy Performance Indicators for plants

Energy efficiency is a large, cost-effective opportunity for manufacturers to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. ENERGY STAR provides manufacturing plant Energy Performance Indicators (EPIs) to help manufacturers to benchmark the energy performance of their industrial plants and ensure energy efficiency is optimized for their operations.

EPIs compare a manufacturing plant’s level of energy efficiency to plants with similar characteristics. They enable manufacturers to judge how energy efficiently a plant is operating. EPIs are industry-specific and generate an energy performance score on a scale of 1 to 100 using actual plant data—not engineering projections. They evaluate a plant in terms of energy per unit of production. A score of 50 represents average, or median performance. A higher score is better than average; lower is worse.

How to obtain an ENERGY STAR score

If you are a manufacturing company:

  • Download the EPI that applies to your manufacturing plant(s) below.
  • Read the “Instructions” tab.
  • Under the “EPI” tab, input the plant’s energy, production, and other required data.
  • Go to the “Results” section of the EPI tab and the “Statement of Energy Performance” tab to locate the score for your plant(s).

If you purchase a specific manufactured product (e.g., steel rebar), identify the manufacturer and request their ENERGY STAR score for the plant in which the product or material was produced. Refer them to this page.

EPIs are currently available for the following manufacturing plant types.

How to use the ENERGY STAR score

ENERGY STAR scores help manufacturers to understand how well a plant’s energy is being managed. A plant’s energy performance score helps manufacturers:

Identify underperforming plants to target for efficiency improvements. Benchmarking can reveal if your plant is using a lot more energy than similar plants — and wasting energy and money in the process. For example, a plant scoring in the lowest quartile (ENERGY STAR score between 1 – 25) is a candidate for investment while another in the top quartile (ENERGY STAR score between 75 – 100) is an example from which to learn.

Identify best practices from efficient plants. Benchmark to find out which plants in your portfolio are the most efficient. Then work with the teams at those plants to replicate energy-saving practices at underperforming plants. Also consider joining an ENERGY STAR focus to learn best practices from companies within your sector.

Verify savings and prevent loss of performance. After undertaking energy saving initiatives, see how your ENERGY STAR score has changed to verify that your efforts are resulting in reduced energy use. Use the EPI regularly to ensure a plant’s performance does not degrade.

Share and report performance. Share your ENERGY STAR score externally and with customers to demonstrate the performance of your plant.

Earn recognition. If your plant receives an ENERGY STAR score of 75 or higher, it may be eligible for ENERGY STAR certification. ENERGY STAR certified plants must satisfy an environmental compliance screen and have energy performance data verified by a Professional Engineer.

How are EPIs developed?

EPIs are developed using annual plant energy (includes all fuels) and production data for a specific manufacturing industry. These mathematical models are often defined at the six to eight digit North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) level. Each model adjusts for key factors that impact energy use in the plant and converts electricity inputs to source energy. 

EPA starts with an industry’s confidential data on plant production and energy purchases as reported by U.S. manufacturing plants to the U.S. Census Bureau as part of its Census of Manufacturers. Occasionally, additional datasets, if available, may be used to supplement Census data. EPA works closely with industry to understand and evaluate the impact of variables that may affect energy use in the plant, such as product mix, climate, inventory, etc. Variables that are found to be statistically significant are specifically accounted for in the model. 

Draft EPIs are reviewed and tested by an industry’s energy professionals who participate in an industry-specific focus. Following this thorough vetting and review, EPIs are finalized and released for the industry’s use.

All EPIs are offered in an Excel spreadsheet format and are downloadable from this webpage (see above). The Excel format provides ease of use and protection of confidential plant data.

To learn about how specific EPIs were developed or whether a specific EPI can be used to score your plant, visit the relevant industries in focus page and download the background file to read about how the EPI was developed.

For petroleum refineries, ENERGY STAR certification recognizes U.S. refineries that achieve top quartile energy performance based on Solomon Associates’ scoring of the Energy Intensity Index (EII) within a refinery size class. To see if your refinery has achieved top quartile energy performance contact Solomon Associates.

To learn more about the value of benchmarking and how to use ENERGY STAR plant EPIs, read Benchmarking Industrial Energy Performance.