Archive for the 'Energy Efficiency' Category

Resources for IT/Data Centers

Sunday, October 11th, 2009 by

The Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR) recently added a “Data Centers” subcategory to both the “Consumer Electronics” and “Energy Efficiency” Sector Resources.

Click here to read the rest of the article

Environmental Stewardship Program Members Achieve Significant Environmental Reductions During 2008

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009 by

When businesses engage in activities that result in improvement of their bottom line and a reduction in their carbon footprint, everybody wins.

Members of the Indiana Environmental Stewardship Program (ESP) implemented environmental improvement projects during 2008 and in the process, achieved monumental results.  There are 45 ESP business members across the state, each committed to implementing or maintaining measurable environmental improvements, such as reducing water or energy use, decreasing solid or hazardous waste, or reducing air emissions. 

ESP members recently reported their 2008 accomplishments to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM). During 2008, ESP members implemented pollution prevention initiatives that resulted in the reduction of:

  • Water use by 69,413,000 gallons, an amount comparable to 105 Olympic-sized swimming pools;
  • Electricity use by 10,939,149 kilowatt hours, a number comparable to the amount of electricity needed to run 4,101 residential air conditioners for one year; 
  • Miles driven by 243,789 miles, a distance comparable to driving from Terre Haute to Richmond and back 877 times; 
  • Natural gas consumption by 8,999 therms, which is like eliminating CO2 emissions from 1,875 propane cylinders used for home barbeques;
  • Carbon dioxide emissions by 13,099,680 pounds, which is the amount of carbon sequestered annually by 1,350 acres of pine forests;
  • Copper discharges to water by 3 pounds;
  • Solid waste sent to the landfill by 18,135,195 pounds, which is equivalent to the weight of about 47 Blue Whales;
  • Volatile organic compound emissions by 820,800 pounds, an amount comparable to emissions from painting the interiors of 34,200 homes;
  • Energy use by 2,325 million British Thermal Units, an amount comparable to the energy needed to operate 7 clothes washers for one year; 
  • Material use by 2,463,680 pounds, an amount comparable to the weight of 3,079 Monster truck tires; and,
  • Hazardous waste by 12,790 pounds, an amount comparable to the weight of one Asian elephant. 

“ESP members go beyond environmental requirements that protect Hoosiers and our environment,” said IDEM Commissioner Thomas Easterly. “Indiana wins when companies use sound business practices to demonstrate their core value of environmental protection.”

To become an ESP member, businesses must maintain an exemplary compliance record, certify that they have adopted and implemented an approved environmental management system, and commit to specific measures for continued improvement in their environmental performance. 

ESP members qualify for expedited permit review, flexibility in permitting, reduced reporting frequencies, and coordination of compliance inspections. To maintain ESP membership, companies must report on their environmental initiatives every year and reapply for ESP membership every three years.

Hoosier businesses can submit applications to IDEM for the Environmental Stewardship Program from September 1 through October 31 and April 1 through May 31.  For more details, visit IDEM’s Web site at www.idem.IN.gov/prevention/esp or contact IDEM at (800) 988-7901.

Green Roof Resources

Thursday, June 25th, 2009 by

It’s summer, and as temperatures rise, many of us in the Great Lakes Region and beyond are yearning for something to mitigate the urban heat island effect. Thus it seems appropriate to highlight some resources related to one popular means to reduce urban heat islands and increase energy efficiency–the installation of green roofs.

Click here to read the rest of the article

Summer 2009 GLRPPR/Region 7 Conference Presentations Online

Thursday, June 25th, 2009 by

The presentations from the recent Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR)/Region 7 Pollution Prevention Roundtable conference are now available on the GLRPPR web site.

Click here to read the rest of the article

Overview of P2 GHG & Cost Savings Calculators

Friday, June 5th, 2009 by

It’s the final day of the GLRPPR/Region 7 Conference in Indianapolis, IN. On the agenda for this afternoon is a webinar presented by Natalie Hummel of the U.S. EPA providing an overview of two new measurement tools developed by U.S. EPA Headquarters. The GHG Calculator is designed to assist P2 managers, staff and grantees in calculating greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions from established conversion factors in the following categories:

  • Electricity Conservation (GHG reductions from electricity conversation or reduced use of energy)
  • Green Energy (GHG reductions from switching to greener or renewable energy sources)
  • Fuel Substitution (GHG reductions from reduced fuel use, substitution to greener fuels)
  • Greening Chemistry (GHG reductions from reduced use of GWP chemicals)
  • Water Conservation (GHG reductions from reduced water use)
  • Materials Management (GHG reductions from green manufacturing processes and waste management scenarios)
  • Cross Reference to other applicable tools (A reference table that provides end users an overview of applicable GHG tools and models)

The P2 Results Database, a web-based tool, designed to collect and quantify P2 progress related to air, water, waste and energy reductions from non-profits, local, state, and federal entities plays a significant role in demonstrating P2 benefits on a regional and national level. A critical part of the P2 Results Database is documenting cost savings that result from government, businesses and facilities implementing P2 activities. This database uses a P2 cost calculator to quantify cost savings based on established methodologies and sound research. Over the last several months, the Pollution Prevention Program worked to update and redesign the tool to enhance functionality and better document cost benefits over time. Today’s webinar will also provide an overview of the cost calculator tool.

If you were unable to attend this week’s conference and/or the webinar provided today, or if you would like to recommend the webinar to your colleagues, the Western Sustainability and Pollution Prevention Network (WSPPN) will be providing a similar webinar on June 18, 2009. See the GLRPPR calendar entry for the WSPPN webinar for details and a link to the event registration page.

For more useful calculators and links to your regional module of the P2 Results Data System, see the GLRPPR P2 Measurement & Calculators Sector Resource.

Spotlight: Clean Manufacturing Technology Institute

Thursday, June 4th, 2009 by

Continuing our focus on Indiana P2 programs, the Clean Manufacturing Technology Institute (CMTI), based at Purdue University, provides technical assistance, outreach, education, planning services and research to facilitate the adoption of pollution prevention/clean manufacturing strategies by Indiana manufacturing facilities.

CMTI offers assistance in all manufacturing sectors, but has special expertise in plastics (including fiber reinforced plastic), wood products, metal finishing, metal and plastic coatings, foundries and motor vehicle parts manufacturing.

CMTI co-founded (in 1996), and continues to manage, the Coating Applications Research Laboratory (CARL) on the Purdue campus. The lab allows manufacturers to test state-of-the-art coating and curing technologies under the guidance of CMTI engineers expert in their application. CMTI also offers ISO14001 Environmental Management Systems (EMS) services businesses and government entities. Training and energy efficiency assessments are also provided by CMTI.

Check out the CMTI web site for an archive of Technology Transfer/Pollution Prevention Case Studies. You can also browse the CMTI Clearinghouse Bibliography online.

Illinois Governor Signs Executive Order to Reduce Goverment Operations Impact

Thursday, April 30th, 2009 by

On Earth Day, Governor Pat Quinn signed Exeuctive Order 11. This Executive Order covers the topics of Waste Prevention, Energy Efficiency and Conservation, Water Quality and Conservation, Sustainable Transportation, plus Education and Outreach. The Green Government Coordinating Council is responsible for the implementation of this Executive Order. The P2 Programs at the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (on behalf of the University of Illinois) were involved in crafting the Executive Order and will be involved in overseeing the progress of the Order throughout state government, as well as colleges and universities in Illinois. To read the entire Executive Order visit http://www.glrppr.org/docs/GOVExecutiveOrder11.pdf.

February 2009 Site of the Month: Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Sunday, February 1st, 2009 by

The Pew Center on Global Climate Change was established in 1998 as a non-profit, non-partisan and independent organization. The Center’s mission is to provide credible information, straight answers, and innovative solutions in the effort to address global climate change. Extensive information is available on the Center’s web site and organized into section on Global Warming Basics, Science & Impacts, Technology Solutions, and Economics. Information is also organized by policy level, including International, U.S. Federal, U.S. States & Regions and Business. The home page features links to hot topics, facts & figures, an overview of what’s new, and brief summaries of Pew Center initiatives. An e-mail newsletter and RSS feed are also available to help you keep up-to-date with new developments.

December 2008 Site of the Month: Consumer Reports Greener Choices

Monday, December 1st, 2008 by

It’s holiday time again, which means you’re probably going to buy at least one gift for someone, as well as items for celebrations and holiday meals. You may wish to consult Consumer Reports Greener Choices web site, which provides information to help choose more environmentally friendly products. Articles and “green ratings” are available for the following product categories: Appliances, Cars, Electronics, Food & Beverages, and Home & Garden.  Within these sections, you’ll find links to articles, information on conservation of resources (such as energy, water, fuel, etc.), resources for shopping greener, and information on recycling and disposal. The “Hot Topics & Solutions” section of the site includes the Eco-labels Center (which helps you interpret what product labels really mean), the Electronics Recycling Center, the Global Warming Solutions Center, and sections on Energy, Water, and Waste.

The “Toolkit” section includes calculators to help save energy, water, and money, as well as a Toxics Search tool to find out whether there’s a potential for exposure while using a particular product, and how that can affect your health. The “Community” section of the site includes links to Consumers Union campaigns, forums and resources for further information, as well as blogs on cars, food safety, green homes, and safety.

Michigan Renewable Energy Package Signed Into Law

Thursday, October 9th, 2008 by

On October 6, 2008, Governor Jennifer Granholm of Michigan signed a bipartisan renewable energy package that will reportedly “create jobs, diversify Michigan’s economy, and save customers money on their electric bills by ensuring that the bulk of Michigan’s future energy needs are produced from renewable energy resources and energy efficiency savings.”

The three-bill package includes a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) that mandates 10 percent of the state’s energy come from renewable sources by 2015, regulatory reform that protects Michigan ratepayers and allows utility companies to build new electricity generation in Michigan, and a requirement that utilities meet an additional 5.5 percent of Michigan’s annual electricity demands through energy efficiency by 2015. The package also includes an income tax credit to offset a portion of ratepayers’ investments in renewable energy for Michigan and a “net metering” law that allows customers to sell renewable electricity they produce at their homes or businesses to their utility companies.

Read the full press release here. See the Michigan Office of the Governor web site to listen to a podcast by Governor Granholm regarding the passing of this legislation.