May, 2017 – Volume 10, Issue 5
Chamber helps businesses save money
From the Mountain Advocate – May 16, 2017
If you knew doing something as simple as changing light bulbs could save your business thousands of dollars in utility costs, would you implement these changes? Lissa McCracken, executive director at the Kentucky Pollution Prevention Center (KPPC), is on a mission to share with Kentuckians just how easy and cost-effective it is for businesses to save money and reduce environment waste. Yes, according to McCracken at the April 25 Chamber of Commerce meeting, it really is as simple as changing a light bulb.
McCracken and KPPC helps Kentucky businesses develop environmentally sustainable, cost-saving solutions at no cost to clients by capturing savings through energy efficiency. These services can include email, phone or web conferencing as well as on-site visits, workshops and webinars.
“When we work with companies…we ask ‘What is realistic?’,” said McCracken, who emphasized KPPC keeps savings ideas obtainable. “We ask what no-cost, low-cost ideas or recommendations we can implement.”
McCracken provided examples of savings KPPC has easily helped other businesses find. One company saw an annual decrease of $9,530 or 16 percent in electricity and natural gas bills. KPPC was able to help another company see a decrease of $14,389 or 14 percent in the same bills.
Obtaining these kind of savings really is as easy as changing a light bulb, too. Switching to LED bulbs is among KPPC’s list of energy saving ideas. KPPC also suggests using power strips, turning unused devices off, implementing temperature set back/HVAC controls and creating energy use management teams to help save money.
“Ultimately, we’re really here to empower people at making decisions…As it gets deeper into more significant cost implementation, you’ll feel a little better with this foundation,” concluded McCracken.
Check out KPPC’s online resources to help your organization become more sustainable, cost-effective and energy efficient.
2017 KAM Conference & Trade Show registration open through May 24th
Registration is still open for the 2017 KAM Conference & Trade Show. The deadline to register is May 24. The Kentucky Association of Manufacturers (KAM) is facilitating the conference, which will be held May 31 and June 1 at the Lexington Center in Lexington, Kentucky. The theme for this year’s conference is “Manufacturing Our Future.” The goal for the conference is for manufacturers to understand and leverage where they are now to influence manufacturing’s future.
The conference offers a full agenda of relevant information from renowned speakers, including Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, who will speak about his new position in Washington, D.C., and his perspectives about energy and the environment. The conference will have 11 sessions over two days, and will include an industry trade show.
KAM invites manufacturers, suppliers, legislators, educators, policy makers, large energy consumers and key decision makers to join them at the conference for focused discussion on topics such as: The pipeline of qualified and skilled talent; reliable and affordable energy now and into the future; and cybersecurity, hacking and the Internet of Things (IoT).
Come by and visit the KPPC booth while you are at the conference! We’d love to see past clients to hear about how your sustainability efforts are going and talk with new ones about how we might be able to assist you.
Learn more about the 2017 KAM Conference & Trade Show and register to attend.
KAM is focused on giving manufacturers practical, relevant information that can immediately be put into practice to see positive results right away.
Bon Secours KY receives national environmental award
The Bon Secours Kentucky Health System (BSKHS) of Ashland, Kentucky, has been honored with the 2017 Emerald Award from Practice Greenhealth, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to environmental sustainability in healthcare, according to the BSKHS website. The award is one of the Environmental Excellence Awards given each year to honor environmental achievements in the healthcare sector.
The Greenhealth Emerald Award recognizes healthcare facilities that are setting the standard in eliminating mercury, reducing and recycling waste, sustainable sourcing and other areas. Winning hospitals have demonstrated a strong commitment to sustainability and shown leadership in the local community and in the healthcare sector.
“We are proud to be recognized with this honor, because sustainability is at the core of our healing mission and central to protecting the health of our patients, staff and community,” said BSKHS CEO Kevin Halter. “I’d like to thank our Green Team, led by Diana Williams, in helping us achieve this award. This honor demonstrates that Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital (OLBH) and the Bon Secours Kentucky Health System continue our work while looking to a future where healthcare is focused on sustainability.”
The Practice Greenhealth awards will be presented May 18 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, at the conclusion of the CleanMed Conference & Exhibition.
Coal company plans huge solar farm on strip mine
From the Courier Journal – April 16, 2017
The Berkeley Energy Group and EDF Renewable Energy are exploring what they’re billing as the first large-scale solar project in Appalachia. They’re focused on two mountaintop-removal mining sites outside Pikeville, where engineering and feasibility studies are underway for a 50- to 100-megawatt project.
By comparison, that could be five to 10 times as big as LG&E and KU Energy’s 10-megawatt solar farm at its Brown station in Mercer County. That Central Kentucky array has 45,000 solar panels on 50 acres that company officials have said can provide energy for about 1,500 homes. The Kentucky Public Service Commission last year also approved an 8.5-megawatt solar farm for East Kentucky Power in Winchester.
“I grew up with coal,” said Ryan Johns, an executive with Berkeley, an Eastern Kentucky coal company. “Our company has been in the coal business for 30 years. We are not looking at this as trying to replace coal, but we have already extracted the coal from this area.” He said it’s just an extension of using that land to produce energy for the nation while putting out of work coal miners back to work.
Three Ford factories in the US have introduced an expansive closed-loop recycling system
Three Ford factories in the US have introduced an expansive closed loop recycling system that enables the company to reduce waste, save energy and improve sustainability. Ford is now saving enough recycled high-strength military-grade aluminum alloy — approximately five million pounds a week — to build 51 commercial jetliners or more than 37,000 new F-Series truck bodies a month.
According to the Aluminum Association, reprocessing aluminum scrap uses one-tenth the energy required to make new aluminum. The organization estimates that because of how cost effective it is to recycle aluminum, 75 percent of all aluminum produced is still in use today. “Not only does this make sound business sense, it’s helping Ford reduce its environmental impact,” said Chip Conrad, a Ford stamping engineer and lead on the development of the automaker’s closed-loop recycling system.
The automaker first explored a closed-loop recycling system for aluminum back in 2015, when it partnered with Novelis — the largest global producer of rolled aluminum products. The collaboration saw a shift in Ford’s Dearborn manufacturing facility from steel to lightweight aluminum and the construction of new automotive aluminum production lines and recycling infrastructure at Novelis to process the return scrap. The partners additionally worked together on vehicle designs that allow for higher amounts of recycled aluminum content.
Developed at the Dearborn Stamping Plant and now in place in Buffalo and Kentucky Truck Stamping, the closed-loop recycling system is powered by an automated vacuum system and more than two miles of tubes crisscrossing the plants. As doors and fenders are stamped into shape, scrap material is shredded into chips, roughly the size of a dollar bill, which get sucked into the system and routed via a series of computer-controlled gates to a multi-ton pile in the back of a semi.
Ford also continues its push to be a global leader in electric vehicles.
Read more about the Ford Transit Custom plug-in hybrid van pilot program.
Cities boost efforts to reduce energy waste
Scorecard of 51 large cities reveals the top 10, including Boston, NYC, Seattle, Los Angeles, and Portland. Orlando, Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Kansas City among those most improved.
Washington, DC — As the federal government weighs budget cuts to energy efficiency programs, cities are stepping up efforts to reduce energy waste. More mayors and local lawmakers in America’s largest cities are turning to energy efficiency to reduce energy costs for consumers and businesses, strengthen the resilience of their communities, and reduce pollution, according to the third edition of the City Energy Efficiency Scorecard, released today by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.
The ACEEE report finds that Boston remains the top US city for energy efficiency, receiving 84.5 out of a possible 100 points, an improvement of 2.5 from its 2015 score. Following Boston, the top 10 US cities for energy efficiency are New York City (#2), Seattle (#3), Los Angeles (tied for #4), Portland (tied for #4), Austin (#6), Chicago (#7), Washington, DC (#8), Denver (tied for #9), and San Francisco (tied for #9).
Based on a 25-point jump from the last edition of the Scorecard in 2015, Los Angeles was the most-improved city. It entered the top five—and the top 10—for the first time. San Diego, Kansas City, and Phoenix are the second, third, and fourth most-improved cities, respectively. Seven other cities, including Orlando, showed double-digit improvements since the last Scorecard.
The five cities most in need of improvement on energy efficiency are Hartford (#47), Memphis (#48), Detroit (#49), Oklahoma City (#50), and Birmingham (#51).
Search the web, plant a tree
How many times a day do you search the internet? What if every time you searched for the latest weather, a cheap flight or a job opportunity, a tree was planted?
A new web browser has struck a deal with a search engine that enables users to plant trees in the world’s most environmentally threatened areas with every search.
When web users use the Ecosia search engine on new browser Vivaldi, ad revenue that Ecosia generates from these searches is used to plant trees in areas such as the Brazilian Atlantic forest and Burkina Faso in Africa.
Ecosia, which is powered by a combination of Microsoft’s search engine Bing and the firm’s own algorithms, claims to have planted more than 7.4 million trees since it was launched by German entrepreneur Christian Kroll in 2009, to coincide with United Nations climate talks in Copenhagen.
Every search on Ecosia raises around 0.5 American cents, and it takes about 56 searches to fund the planting of a single tree.
The website features a small tree counter in the top right corner of the screen, displaying a personal record of how many trees the user has helped plant.
Ecosia, which ranks as the world’s 809th most popular website according to web traffic monitor Alexa, competes in a market dominated by the most popular site on the web, Google, which controls around two thirds of searches globally.
See What’s New at ESRC
The Environmental Sustainability Resource Center (ESRC) is a member of the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange (P2Rx™), a national network of regional information centers. The objective of the ESRC is to provide technical environmental sustainability information and training to industrial service providers in EPA Regions 3 & 4. The primary service area for the ESRC is EPA Region 3 & 4. Region 3 includes Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, D.C., Delaware and Maryland. Region 4 includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee. ESRC resources and staff are available to users in industry, consulting and universities. Please visit the ESRC website or call toll free (855) 531-3772 for more information.
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.
Find the latest articles, videos and resources on the GreenBiz website.
Upcoming Training, Events and Conferences
- FREE: In-Person ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager Training and Webinar
The Louisville Energy Alliance, in partnership with Louisville Metro Government’s Office of Sustainability, will host a FREE EPA ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager training session on May 23 from 1-3 p.m. The training will include a one-hour webinar hosted by an EPA ENERGY STAR professional followed by on-site assistance with creating Portfolio Manager accounts and entering data into the software.
May 23 – Spalding University’s Kosair College of Health and Natural Sciences, Room 113, Louisville, Kentucky
More information about this event is available on KPPC’s calendar.
- Kentucky High Performance Public Facilities Workshop
Every Kentucky city and county is looking for new dollars. Did you ever think that some of those funds could be found in your utility bills? The Kentucky High Performance Public Facilities Workshop will showcase how public facilities can become more efficient and generate real savings in the community.
May 24 – Madisonville Community College, Madisonville, Kentucky
Find out more about the agenda and how to register.
- The Recycling Partnership – State of Curbside Report
In this Webinar, The Recycling Partnership will share details and data from its far-ranging State of Curbside Report. Representatives of three high-performing cities — Florence, Alabama; Madison, Wisconsin; and Portland, Oregon — will share how their communities brought recycling to its residents in a way that makes them public action stars of recycling.
May 25 – Webinar @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Find out more and register for this webinar.
EPA ENERGY STAR webinars:
Portfolio Manager Series
- 101 – May 23 at 1 p.m. EDT – 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 24 at 1 p.m. EDT – 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 25 at 1 p.m. EDT – 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.
View recorded ENERGY STAR webinars at any time.
- EPA Webinar – The Resilient Business: Disaster Preparation through Pollution Prevention
Could your business cope with a major flood, snowstorm, or power failure? Do you use hazardous chemicals? Surveys show that many businesses have not prepared for disasters by taking precautions such as emergency planning, having adequate insurance, & arranging for emergency power. This webinar will show you how to manage hazardous chemicals safely so that they are not at risk of release during a flood or other natural disaster.
June 7 via GoToWebinar
Register for this webinar.
- Indiana Recycling Coalition 2017 Annual Conference
The Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC) annual conference will provide the opportunity to learn about the latest developments and innovations in waste reduction, reuse, composting and the recycling industry. The conference will feature two days of educational, keynote, plenary and breakout sessions.
June 12 – 14 – Indianapolis, Indiana
Find out more and register for this conference.