Charter Steel: 50001 Ready Facility


Charter Steel is a manufacturer of carbon and alloy steel rod, bar, and wire, headquartered in Saukville, WI. In October 2015, Charter Steel established an overall company goal of 25% reduction in energy intensity over 10 years by becoming a partner in U.S. Department of Energy's Better Plants program, while participating in energy management programs including EPA's ENERGY STAR and Wisconsin Focus on Energy. Charter Steel has implemented a continual energy improvement process to drive progress towards this goal, receiving its 50001 Ready designation in August 2017, followed by ISO 50001 certification in December 2017.

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As a motivator to action, Charter Steel achieved DOE's 50001 Ready recognition for its Saukville headquarters plant in August 2017. Charter Steel viewed the 50001 Ready Navigator as a tool to translate the standard into actionable items, and is continuing to use that self-directed knowledge in parallel with technical guidance from external consultants in preparation for ISO 50001 certification. In doing so, Charter Steel established a repeatable methodology for its facilities to achieve ISO 50001 certification and its long-term energy reduction goals.

Implementing a 50001 Ready Energy Management System

  • Time commitment: 3-4 weeks, building on knowledge from external consultant support through Wisconsin Focus on Energy
  • Energy team: Energy Management Review Team from executive management; Cross-functional Enterprise Team to oversee objectives and targets; Plant-level implementation team.
  • Energy performance modeling: Better Plants annual report
  • Keys to success: (1) Drive to establish a system that endures and continues to capture savings, even when staffing changes. (2) Great relationships among energy team members and strong support from upper management.


Charter Steel's Saukville headquarters was recognized by DOE as the first 50001 Ready industrial facility in August 2017, and received its ISO 50001 certification in December 2017.

Key Takeaways

The impact of the energy management system at Charter Steel is far-reaching, from increasing awareness of management, to gaining newfound support for energy efficiency projects. Achieving 50001 Ready and ISO 50001 certification has established and continued to support a culture in which all staff are engaged, asking questions, and coming up with innovative ways to contribute to energy efficiency.

"50001 Ready has helped increase awareness, interest, and support for project completion. Projects that were not getting done before, are getting done now-because we can use data to support the ROI. Having gone through 50001 Ready was a good stepping stone to achieving our ISO 50001 certification."
-Tari Emerson, division energy manager, Charter Steel, Saukville facility

Charter Steel's Saukville plant used the 50001 Ready Navigator tool as a "checklist" to ensure their energy management system implementation was complete. The tool offers an overview of the entire energy management system implementation process, and was used by the energy team to assess implementation status, identify action items related to ISO 50001 requirements, and define remaining tasks. The tool also revealed improvements in procedures and processes - an important part of a systematic and repeatable approach - and provided greater confidence that their system was ready for the ISO 50001 certification audit.


Sector Type



Saukville, Wisconsin

Project Size

900,000 square feet

Photo of Charter Steel plant - 50001 Ready