Sustainability at UDA
On the dairy:
Our family farms depend on our natural resources in order to thrive. We are proud of all that they do to take care of our land, air, and water. One of our newest ventures is in the area of manure management. Manure is a great fertilizer for crops and can be used to generate electricity, Newtrient is helping to develop the market for manure in the American dairy industry.
At the Plant:
UDA today processes more milk with a smaller footprint compared to our last report. We have reduced our energy use intensity by 8% since 2014, our greenhouse gas emissions intensity by 11%, and our freshwater use intensity by 1%. Highlights from the past couple of years include:
- We installed Variable Frequency Drives in our plant, saving 1,682,414 kWh annually – the same GHG impact as taking almost 270 cars off the road!
- We reduced our GHG emissions by the same amount of carbon sequestered by 8,000 acres of forest in a year, which is more than 10 times the area of the ASU – Tempe campus.
- We have put in more water meters to better track our recycled water use. We recycled and re-used more than 162.5 million gallons of water in 2016 – enough to fill 246 Olympic-size swimming pools. In fact, 40% of our total water use is made up of reclaimed water.
- Our plant switched from 3 ply to 2 ply bags, which saved 298,890 pounds of paper in 2016 and almost 2,540 trees.
- We use green building practices, including light-colored concrete and a white roof to keep our space naturally cool.
- Our new ceramic filtration system concentrates waste components that are sent to our offsite digesters, producing clean water that is used in the waste diversion process.
Throughout all of our operations, we keep eco-friendly practices in mind. As in the past, we divert over 99% of our waste from landfills. Much of that waste gets repurposed as animal feed, while a smaller portion gets recycled or sent to on-farm anaerobic digesters. We comply with 100% of our permits for wastewater discharge.
United Dairymen of Arizona has proudly adopted the U.S. Dairy Stewardship Commitment, affirming to our customers, our consumers and the global marketplace UDA’s pledge to responsible dairy production as we nourish the communities we serve. For more information about the U.S. Dairy Stewardship Commitment, go to: http://commitment.usdairy.com/.