April, 2019 – Volume 12, Issue 4
Building Operator Certification Training begins in June
Quantifying the multiple benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy
Donation to UK will establish James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits
EPA, USDA, and FDA unveil formal strategy to reduce food waste
GreenBiz: Taking the trash out of takeout: How the founder of GreenToGo is forging a local circular economy
Guide to Purchasing Green Power Webinar
EPA CHP Screening Tool and Its Effective Use Webinar
EPA’s Waste Reduction Model (WARM) Webinar
Quantifying Health Benefits of Energy Efficiency & Renewables
Environmental Leader & Energy Manager Conference
Sustainable Brands 2019 Conference Detroit
Building Operator Certification Level I Training Series- Eastern Kentucky
How to Apply for the ENERGY STAR
ENERGY STAR – Portfolio Manager Webinars
New energy-efficiency project will drive economic development
The Franklin County Fiscal Court recently approved an ordinance that establishes countywide recognition, including the City of Frankfort, as the Frankfort/Franklin County Energy Project Assessment District (EPAD). As a driver of economic development, this designation will allow property owners to obtain special financing for energy-efficiency upgrades to almost any type of property, including commercial, retail, industrial, nonprofit, agricultural and multifamily properties throughout the county.
“This program increases the capital for projects, creates a net positive cash flow, increases the value of the property and makes energy-efficient projects more attainable,” said Terri Bradshaw, president and CEO of the Kentucky Capital Development Corp. “It is a flexible financing tool that provides a new source of revenue for both new construction projects as well as building renovations that helps create jobs, promote economic development and protect the environment.”
The Kentucky General Assembly passed legislation in 2015 (HB 100) that allowed local governments to establish districts to finance energy-efficiency improvements on commercial, industrial and multifamily properties. The program serves as an excellent economic development tool that does not require government or taxpayer funds.
Once an administrator has been appointed by the county, property owners can apply for this financing and install energy-efficient projects. This special financing allows the property owners to repay the funds for an eligible project via a voluntary special improvement assessment on their property tax bill. There is no down payment, no personal guarantee and it stays with the property if it is sold before the term is up.
It can be used to cover 100 percent of the costs of energy upgrades and onsite renewable-energy projects, including solar panels, LED lighting, energy-efficient air-conditioning and heating systems, and water conservation projects.
“This financing will allow businesses to make energy-related improvements that might have otherwise been impossible,” said Franklin County Judge-Executive Huston Wells. “We had a number of businesses who expressed an interest, and I’m thrilled the court and the City of Frankfort have partnered to make this program available to the businesses in our community.”
Nation’s first HempWood operation to locate in Murray
FRANKFORT, Ky. (March 19, 2019) – Gov. Matt Bevin today announced Fibonacci LLC will locate a HempWood® manufacturing operation in Calloway County with a more than $5.8 million investment expected to create 25 full-time jobs.
“The commonwealth’s burgeoning hemp industry is quickly gaining national attention, and this exciting project will significantly intensify that spotlight,” Gov. Bevin said. “This hardwood alternative opens up new possibilities within the construction and woodworking industries and emphasizes the capabilities hemp has across numerous sectors. We are grateful to Greg Wilson and Fibonacci LLC for locating the United States’ first HempWood operation in Kentucky, and we look forward to the powerful impact the company will have on the region’s economy and the overall industry.”
Fibonacci will lease an 11,230-square-foot facility in Murray for its first manufacturing location with plans to establish a world-class, automated HempWood operation. The company located in Murray after its leaders established a relationship with Murray State University, and 800 tons of hemp stalks have already been contracted through growers in west Kentucky. The operation is expected to begin production this summer.
“We look forward to being a productive member of Kentucky’s agricultural and manufacturing communities, and the enormous opportunities of HempWood as a renewable alternative to Oak,” said Greg Wilson, owner of Fibonacci. “Dr. (Tony) Brannon from Murray State University planted the seeds and Phill McCallon, Kentucky employee No. 1, demonstrates Kentucky’s expertise in agriculture and manufacturing.”
Wilson formed Fibonacci in March 2018 following 13 years of experience, research and development in the wood products industry. Wilson co-owns SmartOak – www.smartoak.com.au – which creates engineered wood products using logs that would otherwise be converted to wood chips. Fibonacci uses technology popularized by China’s strand-woven bamboo industry, in addition to SmartOak tech, which originated in Australia. Dewevai Buchanan, the company’s commercial director, is an internationally recognized product expert with 25 years of experience in hardwood and décor manufacturing industries.
HempWood – with its patented process and product made from hemp fibers and soy-based adhesives – has been in development for the past decade and is viewed to have a number of advantages over traditional oak hardwood. In addition to a higher availability of hemp – hemp stalks grow in six months, compared to oak trees, which take decades – Wilson said processed hemp can reach 20 percent higher density than oak, which provides sustainability and hardness. HempWood can be used in products ranging from flooring and furniture to woodworking projects and culinary serving boards.
Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture Ryan Quarles said this is another step toward the diversification of the state’s burgeoning hemp industry.
“When I became commissioner of Agriculture, I said I wanted to make Kentucky the epicenter of the hemp industry in the United States,” Quarles said. “The fact that Greg Wilson and Fibonacci LLC are choosing Kentucky to locate the first HempWood operation in the United States is a testament to the work we’ve done to strategically position Kentucky’s hemp industry. I thank Fibonacci LLC and look forward to following their story.”
AIA/ALA Awards: Louisville Free Public Library
Each year, The American Institute of Architecture (AIA) is proud to partner with the American Library Association/Library Leadership and Management Association to honor the best of library architecture and design with the AIA/ALA Library Building Award. Louisville Free Public Library South Central Regional Library by MSR Design and JRA Architects is one of the six recipients.
In this day and age of technological progress leading the way to digital products, we might be forgiven for thinking that public libraries are on the way out. Still, despite technology hypothetically not requiring physical storage, the architecture of real library facilities continues to be extremely popular, not least of which because they are embracing a broader and more cross-cutting use than during the analogue era.
The importance of these buildings is celebrated by the American Institute of Architecture (AIA) with a special award presented in partnership with the American Library Association/Library Leadership and Management Association. The AIA/ALA Library Building Award is actually the only award in the world that recognizes entire library structures and all aspects of their design. Louisville Free Public Library South Central Regional Library in Kentucky designed by MSR Design and JRA Architects is one of the six recipients.
This library in the trees is the second of three new regional libraries to be added to the Louisville Free Public Library system as part of the facilities master plan prepared by MSR. In Louisville, the library, with a total area of approximately 3,700 square meters, sits delicately in a grove of 100-year-old trees, making it really stand out in a region of Kentucky where it’s standard practice to clear sites.
Tree preservation, daylight harvesting, and energy conservation serve as design guiding principles, and the library is certified LEED-NC v. 3 Gold, an icon of sustainability for the community it serves.
The design team – which also included landscape architect MKSK – oriented the new library on the site to facilitate conservation of the forest and to leverage optimal solar access. The library’s form was intentionally skewed to address the path of the sun, which allows light to pour in through an opening in the forest’s canopy.
Outside, the form provides shade in the summer and bounces reflected light into the interior during the winter. Rainwater collection and management reduces its environmental impact even further. There are also areas for reading and gathering that extend into the landscape through the large spans of glass providing inspiring views of the site and even outdoor seating.
Simple, industrial-style materials bring out the aesthetic appeal of this architecture even further, and the flexible interior spaces make it a perfect venue for community events and innovative programming, making it much more than just a library offering traditional services in an under-served neighborhood in Kentucky’s largest city. This has obviously helped it gain plenty of ground: the library issued nearly 3,000 new library cards within the first six months of operation. A huge success with the wider public that also made the jury sit up and take notice of the Louisville Free Public Library and make it one of the award recipients of the 2019 AIA/ALA Awards.
Building Operator Certification (BOC) Level I training begins June 13, 2019
Another round of the Building Operator Certification training program Level I classes has been scheduled to begin on June 13, 2019 in Hazard, Kentucky and will be hosted by the Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED).
Building Operator Certification (BOC) is a nationally recognized, competency-based program focusing on energy-efficient building operations and preventive maintenance procedures. The program will train facility personnel to understand how their building systems work together, and how to bring them to their most efficient level of operation.
MACED and the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA) have collaborated to continue the availability of the Building Operator Certification (BOC) program in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. KPPC will provide coaching to training participants for assistance with course assignments and facility-level operations to enhance the training effectiveness and increase implementation rates.
Building Operator Certification (BOC) training includes nearly 74 hours of classroom and project work (7.4 CEUs) in building systems operation and maintenance. Each class in the series is completed in one day, except BOC 1001 – Energy Efficient Operation of Building HVAC Systems, which is a two day class. To complete the series, participants must pass a test at the end of each training day and complete five assigned projects. Tuition must be paid prior to the first day of class.
Quantifying the multiple benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy
State and local energy efficiency and renewable energy investments can produce significant benefits, including lower fuel and electricity costs, increased grid reliability, better air quality and public health, and more job opportunities. While the costs of clean energy initiatives get the most attention, less is devoted to the many benefits of clean energy, often because there isn’t a clear understanding of the benefits and how to estimate them.
EPA’s 2018 edition of Quantifying the Multiple Benefits of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy: A Guide for State and Local Governments describes methods, tools, and steps analysts can use to quantify these benefits so that they can compare costs and benefits and comprehensively assess the value of energy policy and program choices.
Part One of the Guide describes the multiple benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy and explains the value of quantifying these benefits so that they are considered along with costs.
In Part Two, the Guide:
– shows policy makers and analysts how they can quantify the direct electricity, electricity system, emissions, health, and economic benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy
– provides detailed information about a range of basic-to-sophisticated methods analysts can use to quantify each of these benefits, with key considerations and helpful tips for choosing and using the methods
– includes case studies and examples of how analysts have quantified the benefits of state or local energy efficiency and renewable energy policies, programs, and investments, and
– describe tools and resources available for quantifying each type of benefit.
Analysts can use the 2018 Guide to learn how to quantify the multiple benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives.
Donation to UK will establish James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits
LEXINGTON, Ky. (UK Now News) — Students at the University of Kentucky will now have the opportunity to learn how to succeed in the distilled spirits industry thanks to a donation from Jim Beam Bourbon.
Jim Beam Bourbon announced that they will donate $5 million to UK to establish the James B. Beam Institute for Kentucky Spirits.
“As the University for Kentucky, we are the engine of our state’s industry — the pulse of its economy,” said University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto in a UK News story. “When we envisioned ways to prepare our workforce to meet the changing needs of our rapidly growing bourbon industry, a partnership with Jim Beam was a natural fit, and I can’t thank them enough for the generous gift that will help bring our vision to life. Together, as the commonwealth’s indispensable institution and the world’s No. 1-selling bourbon, we’re inspired by the common goal of maintaining the welfare, prosperity, and sustainability of Kentucky’s spirits industry for generations to come.”
Officials say the institute will be led by the College of Agriculture, Food, and Environment, and will offer courses in engineering, chemistry, business, law, horticulture, forestry, food science and entomology. The courses will address the distilled spirits industry in topics including sustainable agriculture, research, and development, according to UK.
The institute will establish a curriculum that covers skills at undergraduate, graduate, and professional levels.
The bourbon industry contributes $8.6 billion to Kentucky’s economy each year and also provides more than 20,000 jobs in the state.
In 2014, UK started a certificate program in distillation, wine and brewing studies. They are set to launch an online version of this certificate in fall 2019.
EPA, USDA, and FDA unveil formal strategy to reduce food waste
WASHINGTON (April 9, 2019) — Today, as part of the Trump Administration’s Winning on Reducing Food Waste Month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the release of a federal interagency strategy to address food waste. The agencies held an event at EPA headquarters to hear from state, local and community leaders and other stakeholders on how all levels of government can work together to reduce food waste.
“With the release of this important interagency strategy, the Trump Administration continues to advance its efforts to reduce food waste and redirect excess food away from landfills and instead use it to feed communities and fuel our economy,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The new strategy prioritizes six key action areas, such as improving consumer education and food labeling, that will help us maximize the value of our food resources. Today’s event brought together key federal, state, and private partners to further collaboration on innovative food waste solutions.”
“Our nation’s agricultural abundance should be used to nourish those in need, not fill the trash,” said U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. “As the world’s population continues to grow to nearly 10 billion people by 2050 and the food systems continue to evolve, now is the time for action to educate consumers and businesses alike on the need for food waste reduction. I look forward to what the future holds on this initiative and how we can work together to change the hearts and minds of Americans to reduce food waste.”
“The issue of food safety and food waste are intertwined, with research showing that there is confusion over the meaning behind date labeling terminology on food packages that have an adverse effect on food waste. Contrary to popular beliefs, date labeling on food packages are often intended to communicate time ranges for optimal food quality, not safety,” said FDA Deputy Commissioner Frank Yiannas. “With more than one-third of all available food uneaten through waste or loss and 1 in 6 Americans suffering a foodborne illness each year, it’s clear that many people are unnecessarily discarding food in fear of food safety issues. This is why the FDA is focused on taking steps to make date labeling on foods clearer and easier for consumers to determine when a food should be discarded. We remain committed to working with the EPA and USDA to better educate Americans on how to reduce food waste and how to do it safely.”
GreenBiz – Sustainability news and resources
GreenBiz advances the opportunities at the intersection of business, technology and sustainability. Through its websites, events, peer-to-peer network and research, GreenBiz promotes the potential to drive transformation and accelerate progress — within companies, industries and in the very nature of business. Since 1991, GreenBiz has chronicled and been a catalyst for thought leadership in aligning environmental responsibility with profitable business practices.
Currently on the GreenBiz website by Amy Campbell Bogie and Katie Ellman:
Taking the trash out of takeout: How the founder of GreenToGo is forging a local circular economy
Imagine checking out a takeout container as you would a library book. Instead of a Styrofoam clamshell that you have to throw out, you’d get a reusable box that you’d return for cleaning and redistribution to another diner.
That’s the idea behind Durham, North Carolina’s GreenToGo reusable takeout container service, which operates in local restaurants. Members use the GreenToGo mobile app to check out a reusable box for their takeout or leftovers from participating restaurants. Once they’re done with the box, they drop it back off, and it gets sanitized and returned, ready for the next customer.
GreenToGo’s mission is to disrupt the status quo of our take-and-trash economy, and to inspire and proliferate the circular economy everywhere. Since its launch in 2017, its containers have been used over 2,000 times, and it’s been featured in “Fast Company” and on “PBS NewsHour.”
Bard MBA alum Amy Campbell Bogie spoke with GreenToGo Founder Crystal Dreisbach about the heartfelt letter that launched the service, the factors that have contributed to its success and being a solutionary.
Amy Campbell Bogie: You describe yourself as a solutionary entrepreneur. What led you to create GreenToGo?
Crystal Dreisbach: I spent many years as a public health researcher, and in 2011 I started writing to all of my favorite local restaurants about Styrofoam. It’s always really bothered me — disposable plastics, and especially Styrofoam due to its negative health, environmental and economic impacts — and I thought that maybe some of the restaurants would change their minds if they knew the facts.
So, I put together a fact sheet and a heartfelt letter. I told them that I’d be even more proud to eat at their restaurant if they switched to a more sustainable option. I probably wrote 200 of those letters, and when one restaurant wrote back, I was so excited! They said that they’d been considering switching to a compostable box, but it was really my letter that pushed them make the decision to do it.
My heart was full of joy, and I realized that there were so many things that we could be doing to get rid of Styrofoam and single-use disposables. After getting Durham’s reuse and the waste reduction communities together, one of the ideas that came up was a reusable takeout container service.
Durham is a great place to start something like that because it’s a foodie town. It’s very progressive and celebrates innovation, so we thought what the heck, let’s give it a shot. We did a Kickstarter and people were really excited, which validated the community enthusiasm for the project.
The reason I consider myself a solutionary is that when I see a problem, I look in the community to make sure that we’re not duplicating efforts or recreating the wheel — that we are really filling a need and that people are enthusiastic about it. When we get community traction for a solution, I love it.
Find the latest articles, videos and resources on the GreenBiz website.
Upcoming Training, Events and Conferences
- Guide to Purchasing Green Power Webinar
This webinar will provide a brief overview of the Guide and the most recent updates, which include new market information and terminology, updated market statistics, new content on direct project engagement procurement options as well as new examples on capturing and communicating benefits.
April 29, 2019 at 1:00 p.m. ET
Register for this green power webinar.
- EPA CHP Screening Tool and Its Effective Use
This webinar will provide an overview of the new “CHP Screening Tool”, including its purpose, how it works, and updates made. The webinar will also present a developer’s perspective of using the tool and provide CHP project development insights.
April 30 at 1:00 p.m. ET – Webinar
Register for this combined heat and power webinar.
- EPA’s Waste Reduction Model (WARM) Webinar
Have you ever wanted to calculate the environmental impact of your organization’s waste management practices? Have you considered making a change in how you manage your waste stream, but are unsure what the environmental impact may be? Do you have sustainability goals, but are unsure how your current waste management plan feeds into the broader goals? These are the types of questions EPA’s Waste Reduction Model (WARM) can help you answer.
May 9 at 1:00 p.m. ET – Webinar
Register for this waste reduction focused webinar.
- Environmental Leader & Energy Manager Conference
Unique in its field, the Environmental Leader & Energy Manager Conference (ELEMCON) will help attendees navigate the ever-increasing interaction among energy, sustainability, and environmental professionals. You’ll learn firsthand from an elite group of thought leaders and changemakers who will share case studies from large enterprises that are navigating today’s most complex challenges in energy management and corporate environmental sustainability.
May 13-15, 2019 – Denver, CO
Find out more about this conference and how to register.
- Quantifying Health Benefits of Energy Efficiency & Renewables
Join this webinar, the second in a series, devoted to quantifying the outdoor air quality-related health benefits of state-level energy efficiency and renewable energy programs. After a brief overview on the types of methods and resources analysts can use to quantify and monetize these benefits, you’ll hear from three analysts who used a range of basic to sophisticated methods to quantify the health benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy policies, programs or technologies. For more information, see EPA’s guide to Quantifying the Multiple Benefits of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
May 16 at 2:00 p.m. ET – Webinar
Register for this webinar.
- Sustainable Brands 2019 Conference Detroit
The premier event for purpose-driven brand innovation. Navigate your brand’s sustainability journey to deliver business success! SB’19 Detroit will help brands and organizations map their way forward to a sustainable future by equipping product and service innovation teams to deliver The Good Life, engaging marketing/communications teams to support Good Life values, and evolving supplier relationships with principles of The Good Life.
June 3-6, 2019 – Detroit, MI
Find out more and register for this conference.
- Building Operator Certification Level I Training Series- Eastern Kentucky
Building Operator Certification (BOC) training includes nearly 74 hours of classroom and project work (7.4 CEUs) in building systems operation and maintenance. Each course in the series is completed in a one day training session, except BOC 1001 Energy Efficient Operation of Building HVAC Systems, which is a two day course.
Begins June 13, 2019 – Hazard, KY
Find out more about BOC training and register for this series.
EPA ENERGY STAR webinars:
- How to Apply for the ENERGY STAR
Learn about applying for ENERGY STAR Certification in Portfolio Manager. Understand the value of the ENERGY STAR certification, see the step-by-step process of applying, and gain tips to help your property get from application to award.
May 15, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. ET
Portfolio Manager Series
- 101 – May 7, 2019 at 1 p.m. ET – Attendees will learn how to: navigate the Portfolio Manager; add a property and enter details about it; enter energy and water consumption data; share properties; generate performance reports to assess progress; and respond to data requests.
- 201 – May 14, 2019 at 1 p.m. ET – Learn more advanced functionalities such as: managing and tracking changes to your property uses over time; using spreadsheet templates to update property data; setting goals and targets to plan energy improvements for properties; generating and using custom reports; and using the Sustainable Buildings Checklist.
- 301 – May 21, 2019 at 1 p.m. ET – Learn about some advanced features, including: using spreadsheet upload templates to update property data; setting goals and targets to plan energy improvements for properties; creating custom reports; and using the Sustainable Buildings Checklist.
To view these and other sustainability-related events, please visit the KPPC Events Calendar.