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Envirobytes - Archive

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EnviroBytes, a Summary of Issues and Events for Week Ending September 4, 2009 

VIRGINIA TO HOST PUBLIC MEETING TO DISCUSS THE CHESAPEAKE BAY TMDL INITIATIVE

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality is inviting federal and state officials on Oct. 2 to a public meeting (at its main office 629 E. Main St., Richmond, Va.) to discuss the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) "pollution diet" initiative that will drive actions to protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay and local waters. The public will be able to access the meeting by phone and computer via Webinar or through a videocast at Virginia DEQ locations in Lynchburg, Woodbridge, Glen Allen, Virginia Beach and Harrisonburg. Federal and Virginia officials will also be prepared to answer questions. For more information, contact: Arthur J. Butt, Virginia DEQ, 804-698-4314, arthur.butt@deq.virginia.gov
Details on the Webinar will be included on the Bay TMDL web site www.epa.gov/chesapeakebaytmdl as the date of the meeting approaches.

EPA EXPANDS LEAD-BASED PAINT REQUIREMENTS DURING RENOVATION OF PRE-1978 HOMES TO PROTECT COMMUNITIES AND CHILDREN

EPA Region 3 representatives are visiting local companies to inform them about the proposed more stringent requirements in the 2009 Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule.  The new requirements will expand lead-safe work practices during renovation of most pre-1978 housing, and will affect training, certification, and work practice/accreditation requirements for contractors and training providers.  The rule will take effect April 22, 2010.  The next phase of the rule will take effect on Oct. 22, 2009 when renovation firms can begin applying for certification. There will be a comment period.  These proposed amendments to the 2008 rule would especially reduce exposures to lead-based paint hazards in young children. Read EPA's press release. For more information, go to http://www.epa.gov/lead/pubs/renovation.htm

EPA SINGLES OUT GREENCHILL SUPERMARKET INDUSTRY PARTNERS FOR REFRIGERANT EMISSIONS REDUCTION EFFORTS

EPA announced its 2009 GreenChill supermarket industry partnership awards to recognize companies for doing their part in reducing ozone-depleting /greenhouse gas refrigerant emission rates, costs, leak rates, and using advanced refrigeration technologies.  In EPA's mid-Atlantic region, Food Lion, Giant Eagle, Whole Foods, Hill Phoenix, and the Supervalu group of companies (Acme, Farm Fresh, Shop'n Save, and Shoppers Food & Pharmacy) were among those awarded.  If all supermarkets joined GreenChill and reduced their emissions to the current GreenChill average, the nation could save the equivalent of 22 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, 240 tons of ozone depleting emissions, and $108 million in refrigerant expenses yearly. For more information, go to EPA GreenChill Partnership (www.epa.gov/greenchill)

HOUSES OF WORSHIP, SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND TELEVISIONS CAN NOW BECOME MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT THROUGH ENERGY STAR

Energy Star for Congregations program
America's houses of worship are eligible to earn the Energy Star label to save energy and money through increased energy efficiency via the Energy Star portfolio manager program. The program tracks energy use and associated greenhouse gas emissions, sets targets for investment priorities, verifies efficiency improvements, and conducts an energy performance rating to earn the Energy Star label. Worship facilities spend more than $3 billion annually on energy costs; consequently, improving their energy efficiency by just 10 percent would save nearly 2 billion kilowatt-hours each year, prevent more than 1 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions at a cost savings of about $315 million annually. Learn more about portfolio manager at http://www.energystar.gov/istar/pmpam and about Energy Star for congregations, at http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=small_business.sb_congregations

Energy Star Challenge for Schools
School administrators and building managers nationwide can accept the Energy Star Challenge for Schools and pledge to improve their school's energy efficiency. The Energy Star Challenge for schools program uses energy tracking tools, technical guidance, case studies, and other Energy Star and resources to help improve energy efficiency.  There are more than 500 school districts already committing to reduce their energy use through Energy Star. The annual energy bill to operate America's primary and secondary schools totals nearly $8 billion, more than what is spent on textbooks and computers combined. For more information, go to http://energystar.gov/challenge   See the map of Energy Star qualified schools near you at http://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=labeled_buildings.locator

EPA Revises Energy Star Qualifications for Televisions to Increase Energy Efficiency
EPA's revised qualifications for televisions now require Energy-Star labeled TVs to be 40 percent more energy efficient than conventional models and will be available in stores nationwide starting May 1, 2010.  These TVs will use less energy when turned on, ensure a satisfactory level of brightness and use less power to download programs. If all televisions sold in the United States met these requirements, Americans would save $2.5 billion annually in energy costs and reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the emissions of about 3 million cars. The new requirements offer important savings in larger size TVs since the 46 and 50 inch TV models will deliver almost 50 percent savings over same size conventional models.

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