The United States Business Council for Sustainable Development (US BCSD) is a non-profit association of businesses whose purpose is to deliver highly focused, collaborative projects that help its members and partners demonstrate leadership in the United States on sustainable development and realize business value. US BCSD leverages member participation and partner support to serve five platforms of activity — By-product Synergy, Ecosystem Services, Value and Supply Chain, Energy and Climate Change, and Water Resource Management. In addition to information on each of these activity areas, the US BCSD web site includes member/partner profiles, information on joining the council, and a list of upcoming events.
Archive for the 'Water Issues' Category
Cheers to the folks at Green Guardian for using the upcoming holiday to promote container recycling. GreenGuardian.com is a web site created to promote environmentally responsible purchasing and disposal choices among the citizens of Minnesota’s Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area. The site is sponsored by the region’s Solid Waste Management Coordinating Board (SWMCB) and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA), and is organized into sections geared specifically toward residents, businesses and children.
I receive their electronic Green Tips newsletter, and was pleased to see them taking the opportunity to tie St. Patrick’s Day to raising environmental awareness. The lead story in the latest newsletter was entitled “Kiss Me, I Recycle” and is an obvious play on the “Kiss Me, I’m Irish” slogan you’re likely to see emblazoned on t-shirts, buttons and hats starting this weekend. (Incidentally, the SWMCB web site provides a handy “Kiss Me, I Recycle” St. Patrick’s Day button template for anyone interested in wearing green and simultaneously promoting green activities.) As eluded to in my previous post, there are likely to be lots of bottles and cans associated with St. Patrick’s Day festivities, and the SWMCB and MPCA are trying to ensure that folks consider recycling and are aware of how to properly recycle as well as what can be recycled. The “Kiss Me, I Recycle” story links to a helpful can and bottle recycling guide on GreenGuardian.com. The guide not only tells you what and how to recycle (which is strictly speaking, not pollution prevention since it’s an “end of the pipe” sort of activity) but also highlights the energy savings associated with recycling, as well as the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, air and water pollution, and water consumption that result from recycling containers as opposed to throwing them in the trash–all of which are important environmental benefits that are certainly complimentary to P2 activities.
This sort of campaign got me thinking about opportunities for similar outreach activities on college campuses. For example, I’ve heard that Mather House at Harvard University has a “green happy hour” for St. Patrick’s Day that involves the promotion of recycling, sustainability and waste reduction. I’m curious to know if other campuses have been involved in similar activities, perhaps on a wider scale. If you know of a “Green St. Patrick’s Day” event or promotion at a college or university, or if your organization, like SWMCB and MPCA, is tying environmental awareness campaigns to St. Patrick’s Day, please take a minute to share what you’ve done in the “Comments” section for this post.
New York State is seeking proposals to help establish a new pollution prevention institute that will promote innovative and cost effective methods for reducing or eliminating the use of toxic substances in manufacturing and other processes, Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Pete Grannis announced recently. DEC is encouraging public or private universities, non-profit institutions, or a consortium of such organizations to submit proposals to develop and implement this pioneering project, first initiated by Governor Eliot Spitzer as part of his 2007-08 Executive Budget. When established, the institute will provide an unparalleled center for technology evaluation and development, as well as technology transfer, training, assistance and workforce development. The institute’s objective is to help make businesses more competitive by enabling them to be more efficient. The institute will foster partnerships among businesses, universities, state and local governments, health and environmental organizations to stimulate the research and development of cutting-edge environmental technologies that will focus on sustainability and toxic use reduction over the course of the product life cycle. Proposals are due by December 5, 2007.
GLRPPR is pleased to announce the availability of a new compendium of resources on Pharmaceutical & Personal Care Product (PPCP) Wastes & Impacts. This compendium focuses on the environmental impacts of pharmaceutical and personal care product residues in the environment, as well as on how to properly dispose of such products to avoid environmental contamination. As with any Sector Resource, expert contact information and lists of relevant events and funding opportunities are provided, as well as relevant Help Desk questions and answers. An RSS feed is available. This sector resource includes a link to the recently released Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant guide Disposal of Unwanted Medicines: A Resource for Action in Your Community, which also happens to be the GLRPPR Site of the Month for September 2007.
This new Sector Resource is a work in progress, so subscribe to the RSS feed or check the web site frequently for updates. If you have suggestions for resources to include, please email them to Joy Scrogum.
The Great Lakes Regional Collaboration announces a sixty day public comment period for a Draft Great Lakes Mercury in Products Phase-Down Strategy. In fulfillment of a Collaboration Strategy recommendation, in April 2006, State, Tribal, and City staff commenced development of a basin-wide Strategy for the phase-down of mercury in products and waste.
A draft Strategy is now available for public comment at http://glrc.us/initiatives/toxics/drafthgphasedownstrategy.html, through October 27, 2007. We invite comments on the Strategy itself and on how best to move forward with implementation, as well as commitments from stakeholders to implement components of the Strategy.
A copy of the draft document was first distributed to government agency experts for technical review, then revised and distributed to a limited group of industry and environmental group stakeholders. A summary of comments that were received and incorporated can also be found at the above web link.
Please send comments electronically to Debra Jacobson at firstname.lastname@example.org. When sending comments by e-mail be sure to put the words “Great Lakes Mercury Strategy Comments” in the subject line.
If you have questions please contact Debra Jacobson at email@example.com or (630) 472 – 5019 (Phone).
Thanks to Deb Jacobson for submitting this information.
- Rx for the Environment: Hospitals are reporting tenfold increases in costs for managing pharmaceutical waste. Prevention options are helping some facilities reduce drug waste and costs.
- Pharmaceutical Waste Workshops: MnTAP is sponsoring three pharmaceutical waste workshops to help hospital-based pharmacies keep in regulatory compliance.
- Minnesota Health Care Facilities Win Honors: Three Minnesota health care facilities were recognized at the Hospitals for a Healthy Environment’s Environmental Excellence Summit.
- Disposing of Drug Waste at Home: Tips on how to manage unwanted medications from your home.
- Lou-Rich Cuts Water: This contract metal manufacturer reduced water used in cleaning and cooling operations by 8.9 million gallons per year, saving $42,100 annually—with assistance from a MnTAP intern.
- Non-contact Cooling Water: Evaluate your facility’s use of non-contact cooling water to identify opportunities to reduce water use and cost.
- Where’s Your Waste–MnTAP Interns: Nine MnTAP interns are reducing waste across the Minnesota. Join us on August 23 to hear about how their companies are working to reduce waste.
- Vacuum Bagging and Infusion Demonstration: Carstens Industries will share its process for vacuum bagging and infusion in Melrose on September 12.
- Lean and Green Seminar: Manufacturers Alliance is hosting the educational seminar “The New Scene is Lean & Green” on August 9. Three manufacturers will present their experiences.
- Minnesota Materials Exchange: A materials exchange program lists one company’s unwanted material and makes it available for use by another company. The listings in Source are examples of available and wanted listings, and successful exchanges from the Minnesota Materials Exchange.
- Calendar: MnTAP posts trainings and events related to manufacturing process improvement, waste management and environmental, health and safety.
Sign-up for a free subscription of the MnTAP newsletter. You can receive the newsletter via e-mail. Minnesota businesses and organizations can choose to receive a hardcopy in the mail, ideal for routing to colleagues.
The Teleosis Institute has a released a new brochure called Drugs in Our Water. The brochure provides a basic overview of the problem of pharmaceuticals and personal care product residues in waterways; some simple tips for consumers as well as pharmacists and health care providers; and a description of the Green Pharmacy Program.
Thanks to Evin Guy for notifying GLRPPR about this resource.
The latest edition (Vol. 4, No. 2) of the Teleosis Institute‘s journal, Symbiosis, focuses on pharmaceutical pollution prevention. The Teleosis Institute is a non-profit organization based in Berkeley, California, devoted to developing effective, sustainable health care provided by professionals who serve as environmental stewards. Teleosis recently launched a Green Pharmacy Campaign, which is a collaboration with local pharmacies, health providers, and consumers, aimed at reducing the “footprint” of pharmaceutical medicine. The campaign includes a pilot program in Berkeley to take-back unused medicines at pharmacies and doctor’s offices.
The contents of this edition of Symbiosis include:
- Letter from the Director
- Health in the News: Pharmaceutical Pollution
- Green Pharmacy: Preventing Pharmaceutical Pollution
- Pharmaceutical Pollution: Ecology and Toxicology Considerations
- Christian Daughton and the Ecology of PPCPs: An Integral Vision
- Water Quality: Key to Many Doors in the 21st Century, by Christian Daughton, PhD
- The 4 T’s: Assessing Exposure to Multiple Chemicals
- Green Pharmacy: Preventing Pollution with Sustainable Medicine
- Facts on Pharmaceuticals and the Environment
- Ecological Economics and the Drug Life Cycle: The True Cost of Drugs
- Pollution Prevention Partner: PharmEcology, LLC
- Unused and Expired Medicines: A National Pandemic
- Pollution Prevention Partner: Physicians for Social Responsibility
- Spotlight on Green Pharmacy: Stockholm County Council
- Website Review: Environmental Protection Agency: Pharmaceuticals and Personal Care Products (PPCPs) as Environmental Pollutants
- Book Review: Macroshift: Navigating the Transformation to a Sustainable World
- Support Green Pharmacy!!
All articles are available online in PDF format at the link above.
Thanks to Evin Guy of the Teleosis Institute for sharing this information.
If you operate a small business in Minnesota, be sure to check out the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency’s Small Business Environmental Assistance Program web pages. Included are general information pages on air, water, waste and clean up issues, a link to the Environmental Guide for Small Businesses in Minnesota, information specific for various sectors (including auto body and auto repair, dry cleaning, halogenated solvent cleaning, automotive salvage yards, chromium electroplating and anodizing, fiberglass fabricators, and wood finishers), links to related EPA initiatives, and archived editions of two newsletters–Small Business Enterprise, a quarterly newsletter published by the SBEAP that covers pollution prevention, compliance and training, and The Cross Link, a newsletter geared specifically toward fiber reinforced plastics (FRP) products manufacturers.
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has announced the availability of applications for the 2007 Community Pollution Prevention (P2) Grants Program. The goal of this program is to institute P2 practices and waste reductions at public parks, and offer visitors a unique opportunity to learn about P2 and environmentally sustainable practices while observing day-to-day operations at those parks. A total of $250,000 in grant funds are available and applications are due April 30, 2007. Examples of eligible activities include: development of a park-wide P2 program; recycling projects; implementation of education outreach programs to train park staff and visitors about P2; the disposal of solid and hazardous waste, pesticides, and fertilizers located on park property; replacement of hazardous cleaning products through the purchase of environmentally friendly products; the purchase and installation of water saving fixtures and landscaping; the purchase of energy efficient lighting, heating and cooling, and maintenance equipment; and green demolition and construction projects.
Be sure to check the GLRPPR Funding Opportunities page regularly for additional notices of grants available throughout the region. Relevant funding opportunities also appear in corresponding Sector/Subject Resources on the GLRPPR web site.