Envirobytes - Archive
EnviroBytes, a Summary of Issues and Events for Week Ending June 19, 2009
REVISED SPECIFICATIONS MAKE FOR MORE WATER-EFFICIENT MORE AFFORDABLE HOMES
EPA's newly released revised draft specifications for water-efficient single-family homes will allow these homes to become WaterSense certified to conform to higher regulatory water-efficiency standards through notable improvements to the hot water delivery systems, water softeners, landscapes, irrigation systems, and homeowner education. The average newly-built, single family home in the U.S. can waste 10,000 gallons of water annually, but EPA's WaterSense program can make it easier to construct homes that use water about 20 percent more efficiently once this draft specification is finalized.
HEALTHCARE LEADERS FOCUS ON SUSTAINABILITY
On June 11, an EPA staff member moderated a panel, "The Greening of Healthcare: How Sustainability Fits into Your Organization," and presented (in introductory remarks) a broad picture of the need for sustainability in healthcare such as how hospitals can become safer, healthier places for patients and workers; how hospital personnel can follow environmentally sustainable and safe practices; and how hospitals can become less energy- and resource-intensive facilities. Representatives from The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Jersey Shore University Medical Center spoke about their experiences in implementing more sustainable operations and constructing a LEED-certified hospital. A representative of Philadelphia Energy Company (PECO) spoke about how Pennsylvania hospitals can prepare for the soon-to-expire electricity rate caps.
EPA HONORS RECIPIENTS OF THE 2009 PRESIDENTIAL GREEN CHEMISTRY CHALLENGE AWARDS
The Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards took place at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. in five categories: Academic, Small Business, Greener Synthetic Pathways, Greener Reaction Conditions and Designing Greener Chemicals. The Challenge promotes research and development of cleaner, less-hazardous alternatives to existing technologies that reduce or eliminate waste/hazardous waste in industrial production. The 2009 Award winners included one from EPA's mid-Atlantic region: Professor Krzysztof Matyjaszewski, of Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pa. who won the Academic Award for his Atom Transfer Radical Polymerization: Low-impact Polymerization Using a Copper Catalyst and Environmentally Friendly Reducing Agents (summary / podcast). For more information on this year's winners, go to http://www.epa.gov/opptintr/greenchemistry/pubs/pgcc/past.html and http://www.epa.gov/greenchemistry/pubs/2009_podcasts/index.html Watch the Green Chemistry Green Scene Video: http://www.epa.gov/multimedia/
EPA RECOGNIZES WOODBERRY FOREST SCHOOL DRINKING WATER SYSTEM OPERATOR FOR EXCELLENCE
EPA presented Mark Beall of Stanardsville, Va. with the EPA mid-Atlantic region's Professional Operator Excellence Award for excellence in operating a small public drinking water system (serving fewer than 3,300 customers) and promoting the health and safety of the students and community. Mr. Beall was nominated for this award for his exceptional contributions to the Woodberry Forest School and its community. Mr. Beall's leadership allowed the Woodberry Forest School drinking water system to maintain perfect compliance for the past eight years, achieve optimal corrosion control treatment for the first time, and benefited the community with his successful e-mail network informing customers about their drinking water quality. For additional information, go to http://www.epa.gov/reg3wapd/drinking/awards.htm#operator
EPA ISSUES CLEAN ENERGY GUIDEBOOK TO HELP STATES SAVE MONEY, REDUCE GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS
EPA released its first Clean Energy Guidebook as part of EPA's State Climate and Clean Energy Program which assists states in developing and implementing clean energy policies and climate change solutions. Since states spend about 10 percent of their operating budgets on energy bills, the guide can help states save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by adopting clean energy practices in their facilities, operations and vehicle fleets as well by identifying key strategies, resources and tools and cost-effectiveness best-suited to their energy needs. To download the EPA's Clean Energy Lead by Example guide, go to http://www.epa.gov/statelocalclimate/index.html
REGION HOSTS SUSTAINABLE FINANCE SEMINAR FOR STATE WETLANDS PROGRAMS
EPA's mid-Atlantic region hosted an environmental finance seminar in Annapolis, Md. funded by EPA's Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds and facilitated by the University of North Carolina School of Government. Geared for finance officers and state wetland program managers, the seminar presented information on a variety of potential funding mechanisms for state wetland programs, funding sources from federal agencies, how best to access these sources, how to partner for opportunities, and how states can finance their wetland programs. The training also provided pointers on how to market a wetlands program to state legislators, other potential funders, as well as to stakeholders. http://www.efc.unc.edu/training/2009/wetlandsfinancing.htm
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