Archive for December, 2017

New data summary reports available: Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Fabricated Metals Industry

Wednesday, December 13th, 2017 by

In 2015, the Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR) began a project to analyze data from U.S. EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory (TRI)Greenhouse Gas Emissions database, and the Census Bureau’s County Business Patterns database to determine the impact of manufacturing on the economy and environment of the six states in U.S. EPA Region 5. The following fact sheets are currently available:

The full report, The Economic and Environmental Impact of Great Lakes Manufacturing: Snapshot of Emissions, Pollution Prevention Practices, and Economic Impact Using Public Data, is available in IDEALS, the University of Illinois’ institutional repository.

Rethinking the holidays

Tuesday, December 12th, 2017 by

This post originally appeared on Environmental News Bits.

It’s that time of year again. The days are at their shortest, the temperature has plummeted (at least here in Illinois), and the stores are hitting all of us with messages to buy, buy, buy.

Whether you’re tired of the commercialization of the season, want to lighten up your environmental footprint, or just don’t have a lot of money to spend on gifts, here are some alternatives to consider.

New Dream’s guide to simplifying the holidays is a good place to start.  The site includes SoKind, an alternative gift registry that encourages the giving of homemade gifts, charitable donations, secondhand goods, experiences, time, day-of-event help, and more. It also features a catalog of low-cost, non-material gift ideas and a printable coupon book, an easy-to-use template that you can print out, customize, and give to family and friends of all ages.

Looking to give the gift of experience instead of stuff? The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s list of 50 things you can give that are more about experience is a great place to start. Although some of the suggestions highlight Minnesota experiences, they can help spark ideas that are local to you (or your recipient).

Finally, you can give the gift of charity this holiday season. Make a gift contribution to an organization that does work that’s important to your friends and family.

For other tips on reducing holiday waste, see:

Presentations from the Toxic Use Reduction Institute’s Fall 2017 Continuing Education Meeting now available

Tuesday, December 5th, 2017 by

The Massachusetts Toxic Use Reduction Institute recently hosted an continuing education meeting. The presentations from that event are now available on their web site. They include:

Strategies for Life Cycle Thinking and Product Sustainability at GE Plenary Speaker: Bill Flanagan, Aspire Sustainability
Partners Update – November 16, 2017
Session A
Materials Accounting Refresher Jeff Bibeau, Tighe & Bond
Session B
Reducing Chemicals in Water Demineralization Systems Maura Hawkins, Berkshire Environmental Consultants
Session C
Business Value of LCA at GE Bill Flanagan, Aspire Sustainability
Leveraging LCA to Improve TUR Tom Gloria, Industrial Ecology Consultants
Product Sustainability: An Intro to Life Cycle Assessment & Circular Economy Sebastian Birke, ThinkStep
Marketing Sustainability via LCAs Raymond Lizotte, Schneider Electric
Session D
Improved Operations and Maintenance:
The Low Hanging Fruit
Heather Tenney, Toxics Use Reduction Institute
A Workers Perspective; Transitioning  to Safer Chemicals Steve Gauthier, Gauthier Safety Consulting
Session E
Resource Conservation Planning & Saving Energy with Metering Tools Rich Bizzozero, MA Office of Technical Assistance
Saving Energy With Meter Data Lauren Mattison, University of Massachusetts Amherst
Session F
Pollution Prevention Options Analysis System Jason Marshall, Toxics Use Reduction Institute
Using P2OASys Alicia McCarthy, Toxics Use Reduction Institute
Options Evaluation Tool Pam Eliason,  Toxics Use Reduction Institute
P2OASys Activity 1
P2OASys Activity 2