Regional Highlights Pacific Northwest
Pollution Prevention Roundtable
December 7-9, 1999 in Seattle, Washington ; Roundtable Report Digest

The following information is summarized from the December 1999 Northwest Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable meeting. A full meeting report is also available.

 

dot Tuesday, December 7, 1999

P2 Projects Showcase

Facilitator:
John Palmer, Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10
     206-553-6521, palmer.john@epa.gov

Eco-Logical Businesses
Speaker:
Kelly Hendryx, Portland Bureau of Environmental Services
     503-823-7585, kellyh@bes.ci.portland.or.us

The Eco-Logical Business Program certifies and recognizes auto repair and autobody service businesses that implement "beyond compliance" pollution prevention practices covering energy, stormwater, hazardous waste, solid waste, and pretreatment. So far, 20 shops have been certified and 20 more are going through the certification process. The program is managed by a partnership of government agencies, auto service trade associations, and non-government organizations.
Find out more: http://www.ecobiz.org

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

Clean Air EnviroStars
Speaker:
Mike Schultz, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency
     206-689-4060, mikes@pscleanair.org

Clean Air EnviroStars is a cooperative pilot project of the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program. Under the program, the clean air agency gives regulatory incentives to autobody shops that have earned high EnviroStars ratings for minimizing hazardous waste. The pilot is helping the clean air agency focus its resources more effectively, and is providing the county program an opportunity to expand into another environmental medium.
Find out more: http://www.pprc.org/pprc/pubs/newslets/newssp99.html

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

Dry Cleaners
Speaker:
Jin Kim, Northwest Dry Cleaners Association
     253-565-9422, jykim@slash.net

The dry cleaners association works with the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency to educate dry cleaners about improving their environmental performance. With his knowledge of the Korean language and culture, Kim acts as a go-between between the agency and Korean-owned shops, which comprise the majority of dry cleaning shops in the Puget Sound region. Most shops have responded to positively to Kim’s visits, and have replaced "transfer" equipment with machines that reduce exposure of perchloroethylene to the air.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

Whatcom County Watersheds
Speakers:
Bruce Barbour and Dave Misko, Washington Department of Ecology
     360-738-6249, 425-649-7014, brba461@ecy.wa.gov, dmis461@ecy.wa.gov

The Whatcom County Watersheds Project is a community-based project designed to foster behavior changes that will protect water quality and salmon habitat in the Lake Whatcom and Whatcom Creek watersheds. Ecology worked cooperatively with local stakeholders that developed household and business pledge programs. To date, pledges have been taken by 530 households and 307 businesses. A followup survey found that half the participants had made some beneficial behavior changes. A central lesson is that locally-based programs will have the most credibility with communities, and will be most effective in bringing about behavior changes.
Read about the governor’s award the project received: http://www.wa.gov/ecology/pie/1999news/99-226.html

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

Industry Outreach
Speaker:
Chris Wiley, Pacific Northwest Pollution Prevention Resource Center
     206-352-2050, cwiley@pprc.org

PPRC is an information wholesaler, matchmaker, researcher and network builder that works to get P2 information into the hands of business decision-makers. PPRC worked cooperatively with business and government representatives to develop regularly updated "living documents" that describe regulatory issues and pollution prevention opportunities for fiberglass fabricators, paint and coating manufacturers, and metal machine shops.
Find out more: http://www.pprc.org/pprc/sbap/sbap.html

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

Rehab the Labs
Speaker:
Dave Waddell, King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program
     206-263-3090, dave.waddell@metrokc.gov

Rehab the Labs is a technical assistance project to help junior high and high schools dispose of surplus, dangerous chemicals, and properly manage chemicals that will be retained for science and other classes. It’s not unusual to find poorly managed, poorly labeled chemicals in school labs, including explosives, water reactives, corrosives and carcinogens. An example is perchloric acid, which can explode on contact with heat. To qualify for financing to dispose of chemicals, school officials must sign a pledge to improve chemical management. Technical assistance is provided to help schools act on the pledges. As of December 1999, the county had visited 52 schools and shipped 1,000 pounds of chemicals for disposal.
Find out more: http://www.metrokc.gov/hazwaste/rehab/rehab.pdf

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

GEMStars
Speaker:
Heather Cataldo, GEMStars Program
     208-364-4038, gemstars@uidaho.edu

GEMStars is a recognition program for Idaho businesses and other organizations that implement at least 12 of 19 criteria covering solid waste and toxics use reduction, and energy and water efficiency. So far, 15 companies, agencies and organizations have been recruited. Participants can display GEMStars logos in advertising, and will be promoted in the media and in the business community.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

EMS Alternative to P2 Planning
Speaker:
Rob Reuter, Washington Department of Ecology
     425-694-7086, rreu461@ecy.wa.gov

Washington businesses subject to the state’s P2 planning requirement have the option of submitting environmental management system (EMS) documentation in lieu of P2 plans. Businesses and agencies that have taken the EMS option have implemented a number of P2 measures. Examples include hazardous materials tracking, employee training, solid waste benchmarking, commute trip reduction, and reduced use of hazardous cleaning solvents.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

dot Wednesday, December 8, 1999

The Right Tools for the Right Job

Facilitator:
Lane Nothman, Ross & Associates
     206-447-1805, lane.nothman@ross-assoc.com

Speakers:
Tom Eaton, Washington Department of Ecology
     360-407-6086, teat461@ecy.wa.gov
Mike Bussell, EPA Region 10
     206-553-4198, bussell.mike@epa.gov
Jeff Hunt, EPA Region 10
     206-553-0256, hunt.jeff@epa.gov
Ray Carveth, King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program (LHWMP)
     206-263-3053, ray.carveth@metrokc.gov
Jim Nolan, Puget Sound Clean Air Agency
     206-689-4053, jimn@pscleanair.org

Panel of Questioners:
Dave McEntee, Simpson Tacoma Kraft Company
     253-572-2150, dmcente@smpsn.com
B.J. Cummings, representing Puget Soundkeeper Alliance
     206-286-1309, pskeeper@halcyon.com

Tom Eaton: Any strategy to improve compliance must be based on goals, including desired results, targeted pollutants, affected regulations, and compliance status of the target audience. Regulatory requirements must be clear, small businesses need a lot of education and technical assistance, recommended P2 measures must be cost-effective, and businesses must know that compliance is expected. Strategies that integrate enforcement, education and technical assistance are most effective for achieving agency goals.

Mike Bussell and Jeff Hunt: EPA has a goal of reducing persistent, bioaccumulative toxins (PBTs) in hazardous waste streams to 50 percent of 1991 levels by 2005. Based on Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data, Region 10 is making progress toward the goal. Between 1991 and 1997, PBT’s in production waste increased 18 percent nationally. In Region 10, however, PBT’s in production waste fell 41 percent in that time period.

Jim Nolan: Businesses need an organizational structure to take full advantage of technical assistance. Elements include setting clear policy, making line managers responsible for compliance, training employees, monitoring, and looking continuously for improvement. Enforcement efforts should be concentrated on laggards. In broader terms, clean air goals will not be reached if agencies concentrate all their efforts on industry and ignore auto use and other actions of individuals that degrade air quality.

Ray Carveth: Agencies need more than one tool to accomplish their goal of protecting the environment. As the scale and nature of pollution problems has changed, the 1970s model of command and control is not as effective. King County uses a mix of technical assistance, incentives, and innovative approaches to enforcement to encourage businesses to adopt practices that reduce hazardous waste generation. An enforcement tool that is very effective is to contact property managers, lenders or insurers, which can apply pressure on laggards in ways that government agencies cannot.

Discussion: Cummings said environmentalists want to see results. Ecology needs to do a better job of measuring the effectiveness of its programs, including compliance rates and the time it takes for businesses to come into compliance. McEntee said agencies should encourage businesses to move beyond compliance, through incentives that reward and encourage investment in innovative technologies. Current regulatory policies hinder innovation, by requiring complex permitting for process changes.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

Top Five Issues

Facilitator:
Dave Waddell, King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program
     206-263-3090, dave.waddell@metrokc.gov

Most businesses just want to know what the right thing to do is. They may have a variety of questions that lie outside the specialty of an inspector or assistance provider. Field staff should be able to answer the questions to maintain their credibility. It’s not necessary to be an expert in all media, but it’s important to know enough about other media to steer business owners in the right direction. There are a number of tools available for becoming familiar with issues of concern to other media programs. King County has a CD-ROM. Other tools include regulations booklets, peer group networks and contacts lists. King County’s Interagency Regulatory Analysis Committee (IRAC) is an effective tool for agencies to discuss regulatory issues that cut across media and jurisdictional boundaries. By being observant, field staff can spot obvious issues of concern to various programs: presence of flammable liquids is of interest to fire departments, odors concern air agencies, floor drains are of interest to wastewater and stormwater agencies.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

Building Effective Partnerships: The Nuts and Bolts

Speakers:
Kevin Masterson, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ)
     503-229-5615, masterson.kevin@deq.state.or.us
Mialee Jose, Seattle City Light
     206-684-3868, mialee.jose@ci.seattle.wa.us
Sego Jackson, Snohomish County Solid Waste
     425-388-6490, sego.jackson@co.snohomish.wa.us

Kevin Masterson: The Eco-Logical Business Program is a partnership of government agencies, trade associations, and non-government organizations with differing goals and cultures. Partnership members confronted a number of challenges. Lessons learned in building and maintaining the program include the following: Start with small projects, then work up to more complex undertakings. Get top management buy-in early. Show measurable effectiveness in advancing agency goals. Trade associations are effective channels for marketing a business outreach program.

Mialee Jose: The Neighborhood Power Project’s mission is to provide conservation services and facilitate neighborhood improvement projects in Seattle. The city works through neighborhood organizations, and projects are driven by neighborhood needs identified by local residents. Projects have been carried out in four neighborhoods so far. Lessons learned include listening carefully to local residents and keeping projects simple.

Sego Jackson: Soils for Salmon is a project to educate key audiences about the water quality and salmon restoration benefits of improving disturbed soils. The project came together informally and produced a conference that attracted more than 200 professionals interested in soil health, watershed hydrology, and salmon restoration. Followup educational activities include seminars, brochures, best management practices, and a curriculum. Lessons learned include the following: administer cooperative projects through non-profit organizations to overcome institutional barriers to interagency partnerships, be creative with resources, divide the work up quickly and just get it done, look for allies, and be willing to give the project away.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

Priority Sector Targeting

Speakers:
Dave Tetta, EPA Region 10
     206-553-1327, tetta.david@epa.gov
Steve Burke, Seattle-King County Public Health
     206-296-3965, steve.burke@metrokc.gov
Sally Toteff, Thurston County Environmental Health
     360-754-4663, toteffs@co.thurston.wa.us
Mike Gallagher, Washington Department of Ecology
     360-407-6868, mgal461@ecy.wa.gov

Dave Tetta: EPA’s enforcement program selects sector priorities by ranking sectors for compliance rates and pollution releases. The Sector Facility Indexing Project is a pilot to improve and simplify public access to all environmental information for profiled sectors. Petroleum refining, pulp and paper, iron and steel production, and primary aluminum production are profiled sectors of interest to the Northwest. The project provides information about inspections, compliance history, enforcement actions, chemical releases, and spills.
Find out more: http://www.epa.gov/oeca/sfi.

Steve Burke: King County selects sectors by answering a set of questions. Sector selection can be time-consuming because different county departments have different goals. Staff try to work out disagreements at lower levels.

Sally Toteff: Groundwater protection is a high priority in Thurston County. Throughout the 1990s, the county undertook technical assistance campaigns for sectors with the potential to pollute drinking water aquifers. Selection of sectors is based on baseline survey data, hunches, and input from cities providing funding for wellhead area protection.

Mike Gallagher: Ecology is developing a strategy for eliminating PBT releases. The strategy likely will include a combination of P2, incentives, multi-media projects, and remediation.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

dot Thursday, December 9, 1999

Plenary Speakers:
Blair Henry, Northwest Council on Climate Change
     206-547-3871, blairhenry@email.msn.com

There is a growing scientific consensus that human activities are altering the global climate. Carbon dioxide and other "greenhouse gases" are building up in the atmosphere. These gases prevent the sun’s heat from escaping into space. The buildup of heat energy in the atmosphere is altering the physical and chemical processes that drive the world’s climate, leading to an increase in "weird weather." This will play out differently around the world. Different regions may experience hotter, colder, wetter or drier weather.

Combustion of fossil fuels—coal, oil and natural gas—is the leading source of CO2 emissions. As a result, climate change is a very controversial political issue, because of the economic and political prominence of industries that either produce fossil fuels or depend on power generated by fossil fuels.

Since fossil fuel combustion began on a wide scale in the early 19th century, the atmosphere’s CO2 concentration has increased from 280 to 360 parts per million. Average global temperatures have risen 1.5 degrees F in the past 120 years. The 1990s were the hottest decade in the past 600 years. CO2 levels and global temperatures have fluctuated naturally over the past 150,000 years, but the most recent increase in CO2 has taken place very rapidly compared to natural levels of increase.

University of Washington scientists have projected that climate change will mean warmer, wetter winters in the Northwest. With less snowpack, hydroelectric generation and summer water supplies will be reduced. Forests may die back east of the Cascades and salmon will be under greater stress. Rising sea levels will flood low-lying areas and result in saltwater intrusion.

With strong action to improve energy efficiency and turn to renewable energy resources, CO2 levels can be kept at twice the pre-industrial level. Without strong action, CO2 levels could reach three or four times pre-industrial levels, which will result in environmental conditions humanity has never before faced.

Cities can act by joining the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives’ Cities for Climate Protection Campaign http://www.iclei.org/us/US_ccp.html. Individuals can buy fuel-efficient vehicles. Consumers can compare the fuel efficiency of vehicle models by visiting http://www.fueleconomy.gov.
Find out more: http://www.nwclimate.org

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

P2, Energy and Sustainability: The Big Picture

Facilitator:
Carolyn Gangmark, EPA Region 10
     206-553-4072, gangmark.carolyn@epa.gov

Speakers:
Rhys Roth, Climate Solutions
     360-352-1763, rhys@climatesolutions.org
Mike Nelson, WSU Cooperative Extension Energy Program
     360-956-2148, nelsonmk@energy.wsu.edu
Maria Tikoff-Vargas, EPA Energy Star Buildings/Green Lights
     202-564-9178, vargas.maria@epa.gov
Michael Closson, Earth Day 2000 Network
     206-876-2000, mclosson@earthday.net

Rhys Roth: Revolutionary technologies for generating electricity with little or no pollution are on the horizon. Wind and solar are the fastest growing energy sources in the world. Automakers are racing to bring gasoline-electric hybrids and fuel cell vehicles to market. The Northwest is poised to lead the clean energy revolution because of its experience with energy efficiency, its diverse energy services industry, and the presence of leading clean energy equipment manufacturers in the region. P2 technical assistance providers can help by making appropriate referrals to energy and manufacturing assistance providers.
Find out more: http://www.climatesolutions.org

Maria Tikoff-Vargas: Energy Star is a voluntary partnership that is helping building owners and consumers save money through energy efficiency. About 13 percent of commercial, industrial and institutional square footage in the nation is participating in the Energy Star Buildings/Green Lights program. In 1998, efficiency upgrades in participating buildings saved $800 million in energy costs and prevented emission of 2.4 million metric tons of greenhouse gases (carbon equivalent). In 1998, consumers saved $7 billion and prevented emission of 4 million metric tons of greenhouse gases (carbon equivalent) by buying Energy Star appliances and other products.
Find out more: http://www.energystar.gov

Mike Nelson: Solar technology is available and practical today. Used efficiently, solar-generated electricity is cost-effective, because overall energy costs are more important than the price per unit of energy. The only reason solar is not in widespread use is because conventional economics discounts the value of the future, thus giving an advantage to coal and other polluting fuels. Switzerland, not a nation famous for abundant sunlight, is installing solar panels beside highways, on rooftops, in building facades, and on ski slopes.
Find out more: http://www.energy.wsu.edu/renewables

Michael Closson: The theme of Earth Day 2000 is "Clean Energy Now." The Earth Day Network is reaching out to cities and states nationwide to take part in clean energy campaigns. The goal is to push a clean energy revolution from the grass-roots up.
Find out more: http://www.earthday.net/action/communities.stm

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.

 

Getting Down to Brass Tacks: Collaboration Opportunities for P2 Programs

Facilitator:
Peter Hurley, Seattle City Light
     206-684-3782, peter.hurley@ci.seattle.wa.us

Speakers:
Rob Penney, Industrial Technical Assistance Providers (ITAP)
     360-956-2053, penneyr@energy.wsu.edu
Blair Collins, Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NWEEA)
     503-827-8416, bcollins@nwalliance.org
Jack Brautigam, Climate Wise
     206-684-3954, jack.brautigam@ci.seattle.wa.us
Nancy Bond, Resource Efficiency Program
     503-916-2000, nbond@pps.k12.or.us
Lucia Athens, Seattle Public Utilities Resource Conservation
     206-684-4643, lucia.athens@ci.seattle.wa.us
Judith Leckrone, EPA Region 10
     206-553-6911, leckrone.judith@epa.gov

Rob Penney: ITAP is a partnership of energy and P2 assistance providers working together to provide comprehensive services to business. In searching for information and working with potential partners, a few principles should be kept in mind. They include: be a power web surfer by using meta-search engines, accumulate information leads instead of paper piles, and find information sources that are reliable, comprehensive and unbiased.

Useful web sites include:

Blair Collins: The Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance is a non-profit organization that is working to build markets for energy-efficient products and practices through technology transfer, technology demonstrations, training, and education. So far, the alliance has funded 32 residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural projects. Commercial and industrial projects cover motors, compressed air systems, wastewater treatment, and the microelectronics industry.
Find out more: http://www.nwalliance.org

Jack Brautigam: ClimateWise is a voluntary partnership program to help businesses cut costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prevent pollution. The program is administered by local governments. Participating businesses commit to implementing projects that best suit their needs. The projects can cover energy and water efficiency, waste prevention, commute trip reduction, product design and management practices. More than 500 companies nationwide, including leading Northwest manufacturers, are participating.
Find out more: http://www.epa.gov/climatewise or http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/light/conserve/business/cv5_cw.htm

Nancy Bond: Resource Efficiency was a two-year pilot project to build community-based programs to help small businesses reduce waste and use energy and water more efficiently. The program was piloted in three Oregon communities – Cannon Beach, Corvallis, and Milwaukie – as a cooperative endeavor of state and local agencies. The programs worked with local chambers of commerce, validating the program for businesses. Out of 77 participating businesses, 71 implemented recommendations. In total, participants reduced solid waste by 57,000 pounds, and saved 360,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity, 1.9 million cubic feet of natural gas, and 5.5 million gallons of water. Cost savings totaled $42 per employee.
Find out more: http://www.deq.state.or.us/wmc/solwaste/repp/resefpp.html

Lucia Athens: Buildings account for an enormous share of economic activity, resource consumption and pollution, including energy use, timber harvest, CO2 emissions, and solid waste generation. In the Northwest, sustainable building is important for salmon recovery, because building and land use practices can result in stormwater runoff, water consumption and water pollution that harms salmon habitat. P2 is a natural fit for sustainable building, which refers to integrating materials and practices to restore environmental quality, promote economic vitality, and incorporate social benefits. P2 practices, such as efficient lighting and low-VOC paints, can improve the quality of the indoor environment, which can result in higher productivity. The city of Seattle has adopted a sustainable building plan to make sustainable practices the norm for municipal and private sector projects.
Find out more: http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/util/RESCONS/susbuild/default.htm

Judith Leckrone: In 1999, EPA Region 10 renovated the regional executive office suite to provide a more functional and pleasing office environment, improve resource efficiency, and demonstrate sustainable building practices. The result was an attractive office suite that makes better use of space and minimizes resource use. Construction waste was recycled. Lighting efficiency was improved with efficient equipment and daylighting. Low-VOC coatings and adhesives were used to improve indoor air quality. Furniture was made of wood from certified forests and fabrics manufactured without toxic chemicals.
Find out more: http://www.epa.gov/r10earth/innovation.htm and click on "Building a Green Future."

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting report.


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