SSP - November 2015

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Triple LEED Ceremony for Western Kentucky University

On October 28, Western Kentucky University President Gary A. Ransdell lead a ceremony with the U.S. Green Buildings Council to recognize the university’s achievement of LEED Certification for three campus buildings:

Gary A. Ransdell Hall

Gary A. Ransdell Hall

Gary A. Ransdell Hall – This new facility was designed for the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences and replaced an existing outdated building that no longer met the needs of these programs. The building was designed to be a signature facility for the campus.

WKU Music Hall – Western Kentucky’s new Music Hall is a three-story building featuring both instrumental rehearsal and choral rehearsal spaces. The building achieved energy performance of 24% better than average; 75% of construction waste recycled or salvaged and a 35% reduction in water consumption.

Augenstein Alumni Center – The new Alumni Center is the face of WKU, offering an inviting atmosphere as a social and logistical headquarters for students as they return to campus. The space also serves as a hub for prospective students.

LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a certification program focused primarily on new, commercial-building projects and based upon a points system. The more points you earn, the higher your rating. LEED is a globally recognized symbol of excellence in green buildings.

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is committed to a prosperous, healthy and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings.


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Energy Efficiency Investment Creates Jobs – But How Many?

By Jim Barrett, Chief Economist for the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy

Even when the economy is doing well, economic growth and job creation always seem to be at the center of focus for policymakers at every level of government. So it’s only natural that when energy efficiency policies and programs are being discussed one of the questions that often comes is how will proposed initiatives affect jobs.

The good news is that job creation is one of the many benefits that results from smart investments in energy efficiency. We at ACEEE have conducted several studies that demonstrate this point. In our new report Verifying Energy Efficiency Job Creation: Current Practices and Recommendations, we took a look at efforts to quantify job creation from energy efficiency projects to see how they are being done and to try to establish some best practices to help people in the field tackle the problem.

How energy efficiency creates jobs
Efficiency investments create jobs in at least two different ways. One is during the implementation of the project itself, like installing a new water heater in a home. The other is when the homeowners re-spend the money the new water heater saves them. Every job E2-jpeg-SSP-Nov2015created through these two channels falls into one of three categories. “Direct” jobs are created from the initial change in spending patterns. “Indirect” jobs are created one step removed, along the supply chain. “Induced” jobs are created yet one more step further away when the people hired to fill the first two types of jobs take their new income and spend it on rent, groceries, going to the movies or whatever.

In our water-heater replacement example, the implementation phase direct jobs are the water heater installers, the indirect jobs include things like workers at the water heater factory, and induced jobs are created when the installers and factory workers use new income to go out to dinner. The savings phase creates jobs in the same three categories. When the homeowner uses the money he or she saves on energy bills to buy a book, direct jobs are created at the book store, indirect jobs are created at the publisher and induced jobs are created when employees at the bookstore and publishing company go out to dinner.

Read the entire article at ACEEE.


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New Safer Chemistry Curriculum for Professionals

The Green Chemistry & Commerce Council Education Group is proud to announce the launch of the Safer Chemistry Training for Businesses. This free online curriculum is comprised of educational webinars, ranging from introductory to advanced, and supplemental reading materials. While the material has been developed with a business audience in mind, we hope that other groups, such as technical assistance providers and students, will also benefit from this foundation in green chemistry.

The Safer Chemistry Training was developed in response to our member companies’ needs Chem-jpeg-SSP-Nov-2015for education of their employees and supply chains in various aspects of green chemistry. It is a direct outcome of the GC3 Policy Statement on Green Chemistry Education, which calls on businesses and academic institutions to support and implement green chemistry training in order to fulfill societal and industrial needs.

The Safer Chemistry Training for Businesses is designed to be tailored to the specific needs of the learner’s job description and experience; the number of webinars watched and duration of training can be altered as needed. For example, a purchaser trying to understand new corporate sustainability initiatives might only watch a few, whereas a chemist new to green chemistry might want to watch 5 or 6.

View the complete list of educational webinars. Additional training webinars are planned and will be added to the Safer Chemistry Training in the coming months.


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Green Construction is Major U.S. Economic Driver

The green building sector is outpacing overall construction growth in the U.S. and will account for more than 2.3 million American jobs this year, according to a new U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) study.

The 2015 Green Building Economic Impact Study, released by USGBC and prepared by Booz Allen, finds the green building industry contributes more than $134.3 billion in labor income to working Americans. The study also found that green construction’s growth rate is rapidly outpacing that of conventional construction and will continue to rise.

By 2018, the study finds, green construction will account for more than 3.3 million U.S. jobs–more than one-third of the entire U.S. construction sector–and generate $190.3 billion in labor earnings. The industry’s direct contribution to U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is also expected to reach $303.5 billion from 2015-2018.


Expected Impact in Kentucky 2015-2018Cumulative Direct Economic Impact

From 2015 to 2018, this study predicts, green and LEED construction will add to the economy:

Green Construction
• generate $303.4 billion of additional GDP
• support 3.9 million jobs and
• provide $268.4 billion in labor earnings.
LEED Construction will:
• generate $108.8 billion of additional GDP
• support 1.4 million jobs and
• provide $95.7 billion in labor earnings.

In Kentucky
Green Construction
• generate $10.17 billion of additional GDP
• support 120,000 jobs and
• provide $6.82 billion in labor earnings.
LEED Construction will:
• generate $830 million of additional GDP
• support 9,000 jobs and
• provide $550 million in labor earning plus
• $56.5 million in annual state property and income tax revenue.


“Green building is playing a massive role in the U.S. construction sector, the clean and efficient energy sector and the U.S. economy as a whole,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “More than 2.3 million U.S. workers are taking home $134 billion annually in large part because of green building programs like LEED. Demand for green building will only continue to grow as individuals, businesses and institutions continue to prioritize sustainable approaches to the design, construction and operations of our built environment.”


Carpet and Mattress Recycling Made Simple with
Newly Released How-To Guides

The Product Stewardship Institute (PSI) released two new “how-to guides” for recycling scrap carpet and used mattresses to help state and local government officials address the multi-million dollar challenge of managing these bulky products safely, responsibly and cost-effectively.

More than 50,000 mattresses are discarded each day in the U.S., the equivalent of close to Mat-jpeg-SSP-Nov-201520 million annually. While as much as 90 percent of mattress components – steel, cotton, and foam – are recyclable, only a tiny percentage – less than 5 percent – of mattresses are salvaged annually; the rest present operational problems for our nation’s landfills and waste-to-energy plants. Scrap carpet also poses a looming threat, with Americans discarding nearly 3.9 million tons of carpet and rugs each year and recycling only about 7.5 percent.

“Recycling used carpet and mattresses saves resources, creates jobs and reduces greenhouse gas emissions and energy use,” said Scott Cassel, PSI’s chief executive officer and founder. “Currently, the cost of recycling or disposing of these products falls on government and taxpayers, and that is not sustainable. The burden needs to be shifted to manufacturers and consumers for these valuable materials to enter the circular economy.”

If you are interested in advancing carpet or mattress infrastructure in your community, learn more by accessing the Advancing Carpet Stewardship How-To Guide (pdf), and the Advancing Mattress Stewardship How-To Guide (pdf).


2016 Energy Star Award – Now Accepting Applications

Each year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy Link to External Site(DOE) honor organizations that have made outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. Next year’s winners will be recognized at the Energy Star Awards Ceremony on April 13, 2016 in Washington, DC. All organizations participating in the Energy Star program are encouraged to apply for a 2016 Energy Star Partner of the Year Award.

Submit Award Application (by December 4th):
The deadline to submit a Final Award Application through your My Energy Star Account (MESA) is 8 p.m. EST, December 4, 2015. Consider logging in early to ensure you have the necessary login information to access MESA and submit your application prior to the deadline. If you don’t have a MESA account, please call the Energy Star Hotline at 1-888-STAR-YES (1-888-782-7937) to have one created.


Kentucky Corporate Sustainability Council

The Nature Conservancy of Kentucky’s Corporate Sustainability Council brings logo-jpg-natureKentucky-based businesses, Conservancy staff, and leading sustainability experts from around the world to develop practices promoting the responsible management of natural resources from forests, rivers and streams, soils and deep in the earth that companies depend upon for their products. This is achieved at Conservancy-sponsored forums where Council members convene to network, learn from each other, and identify solutions to environmental challenges that reflect common points of interest between business and nature.

If your Kentucky-based business would like to join the Conservancy’s Corporate Sustainability Council, please visit the Conservancy’s website to learn more.


See What’s New at ESRC

The Environmental Sustainability Resource Center (ESRC) is a member of the Pollution Prevention ESRC-Logo120x120Resource 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 & 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.


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Upcoming Training, Events and Conferences

• EPA Webinar: Portfolio Manager 101
Get started using EPA’s Portfolio Manager tool. An introduction and demonstration of the core functionality of the Portfolio Manager tool, including how to enter properties, enter energy and water data, share data with others, and generate performance reports.
December 15 at 1:00 pm EDT – View more training opportunities and Register for the Webinar.

• EPA Webinar: Portfolio Manager 201
Take a deeper dive into the more advanced features of Portfolio Manager, such as managing changes in property uses over time, using spreadsheet templates to quickly upload data, setting goals, and creating custom reports.
December 16 at 1:00 pm EDT – View more training opportunities and Register for the Webinar.

EPA Webinar: Portfolio Manager 301
Take a deeper dive into the more advanced features of Portfolio Manager, such as managing changes in property uses over time, using spreadsheet templates to quickly upload data, setting goals, and creating custom reports.
December 17 at 1:00 pm EDT – View more training opportunities and Register for the Webinar.



Ca.jpg-icon-SSPTo view these and other sustainability-related events, please visit the KPPC Events Calendar.


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