Pollution Prevention Northwest Newsletter
Published by the Pacific Northwest Pollution Prevention Resource Center
Summer 2001

Energy and Water Conservation
       The Northwest has long recognized the connection between pollution prevention and both energy and water conservation. According to the Northwest Energy Coalition, in the past 20 years, Northwesterners saved over 1700 megawatts of electricity through conservation: that's enough to power a city larger than Seattle! Just as we learned that a "negawatt" is cheaper to produce than a megawatt, we've also found that water conservation programs can defer or eliminate the need for new water supply facilities and wastewater facilities.
       Along these lines, this issue focuses on energy and water conservation including many on-the-ground examples of efficiency improvements (marked with a special notation: ** example: ) as well as a host of information and funding resources.

dot Water: A Drop Saved in a Drop Earned
dot Water Efficiency Resources
dot Energy Efficiency = Savings
dot Energy Efficiency Resources
dot Meet Our Staff
dot P2 Digest
dot About this Newsletter
Water: A Drop Saved Is A Drop Earned

water drop        Not since 1977, and maybe not since the big dry years of the Depression has the Northwest seen a drought as severe as the one the region finds itself in today.
        Water will be at a premium this summer, when typically, demand for water peaks and rainfall is at its lowest. Pressure can be taken off the water resource through efficiency measures, by getting more work out of each gallon consumed.
        Below are a few examples of water efficiency measures that are available. The summary includes a few real-life examples from Northwest businesses that have implemented water efficiency measures.


        Fixing leaks in pipes, valves and appliances can reduce water and sewer bills, and prevent property damage. An undetected toilet leak can lose 100 or more gallons per day. Contact your water utility for information and assistance on leak detection.
        ** example: The Fred Meyer Baking Plant in Clackamas, Ore., detected and fixed water leaks that were wasting 709,000 gallons per year, for an annual cost savings of $3,280.

        Single-pass cooling systems use water once, then dispose of it. Single-pass systems can use 40 times as much water as a cooling tower that cycles water through five times. Single-pass cooling is typically used for equipment such as degreasers, air compressors, welding machines, and ice machines.
        ** example: Graphic Sciences, a Portland ink manufacturing firm, eliminated single-pass in favor of a cooling tower. Water and sewer bill savings paid for the tower in six months. The company reduced its water consumption by 2.5 million gallons per year.

Toilets and Urinals
        Toilets and urinals account for about one-third of all water consumed in buildings in the U.S. Older toilets use 3.5 to 7 gallons per flush. New models meeting current efficiency standards use 1.6 gallons per flush. Newer versions of efficiency toilets have design and operational features designed to correct performance problems experienced with older versions. Most of the 8-9 million urinals used in the U.S. consume 3 gallons per flush. Efficiency models reduce consumption to 1 gallon per flush. Another option is a waterless urinal, in which urine passes through a light liquid that serves as a trap to prevent odors. In a small office with 25 men, a waterless urinal could save up to 60,000 gallons per year.
        ** example: The Northshore School District, headquartered in Bothell, Wash., has installed three waterless urinals. The Highline School District, headquartered in Burien, Wash., has completed a urinal retrofit project that is saving 1,400 gallons per day.



Showerheads & Faucet Aerators
        A five-minute shower with a showerhead using 5 gallons per minute will use 25 gallons of water, plus energy to heat the water. A showerhead using 2.5 gallons per minute will cut consumption in half, with no reduction in comfort. Aerators are simple devices that can reduce faucet water consumption by half. Aerators are available at hardware stores and may be offered by your water utility.
        Find Out More: http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/light/

        The toilet is the largest single user of water indoors. Older toilets using 3.5 to 7 gallons per flush can be replaced by newer efficiency models that use 1.6 gallons per flush. In the meantime, there are simple ways to test toilets for leaks.
        Find Out More About Toilet Replacement: http://www.savingwater.org/

        Find Out More About Leak Detection and Repair: http://www.savingwater.org/

Clothes Washers
        EnergyStar washing machines can reduce water and energy use by half, and get your clothes clean with less wear and tear on the fabric.
        Find Out More: http://www.energystar.gov/


Natural Lawn Care
        Overwatering lawns is one of the leading causes of inefficient water consumption in the summer. Natural lawn care is a lawn maintenance method for both reducing water use and improving lawn health. See the six steps to natural lawn care at http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/

Landscaping & Irrigation
        The right plants in the right location will yield beautiful landscaping with less expenditure for watering, fertilizer or pest control.
        Find Out More: http://www.savingwater.org/

Did You Know?

What percent of "average" household water use is lost to leaks?

A. Leaks only occur in Washington DC
B. 2%
C. 7%
D. 13%


D - 13%. According to the American Water Works Association, leaks send 13.7% of household water use down the drain! Water saving opportunities and other statistics can be found at: http://www.ecy.wa.gov/

Business and Industry Resource Venture (Seattle)

Free information and on-site technical assistance for Seattle businesses

Water Smart Technology (Seattle and 26 water purveyors in King County)

Businesses can earn rebates for investments in water-efficient technology, including cooling, refrigeration, commercial laundry, and industrial processes. Financial incentives also are available for efficient toilets, urinals, ice machines, commercial irrigation systems, and washing machines at coin-operated laundries.
    Residential customers can obtain rebates for qualified WashWise clothes washers.
    Available in Seattle and through agencies that purchase wholesale water from Seattle Public Utilities. For list, see http://savingwater.org/providers.htm

Snohomish County Public Utility District
Rebates available for horizontal axis clothes washers and efficient toilets.

Tacoma Water

Faucet aerators, efficient showerheads, and toilet kits available to residential customers.


Businesses for an Environmentally Sustainable Tomorrow (BEST)
City resource experts help businesses with water and energy efficiency, waste reduction, and P2.

Portland Water Bureau

The Portland Think BIG program offers business site assessments and technical assistance

Self-help conservation workshops offered regularly.

Eugene Water & Electric Board

Home water audits are available. Audits include free aerators, showerheads and toilet water saving devices.


United Water Idaho

Residential audits and water-efficient landscaping classes are available in the Boise area.


A water efficiency clearinghouse with a searchable database and links

Soil & Water Conservation Districts

Soil and water conservation districts work with local landowners to help them conserve water, soil and other natural resources. There is one in nearly every county in the U.S.

Center of Excellence for Sustainable Development

Portal site with links to assistance programs, publications, other resources

Water Alliances for Voluntary Efficiency (WAVE)
EPA water efficiency partnership program for businesses and institutions

Efficient Toilets That Work
A list of recommendations from Terry Love, a Redmond, Wash., plumbing contractor.


Leave clippings on the lawn. They conserve moisture and reduce watering needs.

Energy Efficiency = Savings

        An electricity grid is like a swimming pool. On one end, utilities and other power plant owners pour water in. On the other end, households, businesses, manufacturing plants and institutions take water out. Every bucket of water taken out must be balanced instantly by a bucketful of water poured in, or else the grid becomes unstable. The result: rolling blackouts. That's the situation facing the Northwest this summer.
        If too much water is being taken out of the swimming pool - if there is too much demand on the grid - one way to keep things in balance is to reduce demand. Using energy more efficiently gets more work out of every kilowatt-hour.
        Efficiency measures work together to multiply savings. More efficient lighting, windows and "plug loads" - computers, copies and the like - may allow a building to get by with a smaller HVAC system.
        Below are ideas and real-life examples of how efficiency measures can reduce electricity demand and deliver other benefits as well, including an improved work environment and greater productivity.


        Lighting is the single largest energy consumer in commercial buildings. A combination of site-specific tools, including efficient lamps and ballasts, sensors, controls, and daylighting can yield significant energy savings and spinoff benefits, including improved productivity and better work quality.
        ** example: Empire Bolt & Screw, a Spokane wholesaler, replaced T12 fluorescent lamps and magnetic ballasts with more efficient T8 lamps and electronic ballasts. The company's lighting bill dropped by one- third. The lamps provided improved color rendition, enabling employees to see their work better.

        Upgrading heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems (HVAC) can improve employee comfort as well as reduce energy costs.
        ** example: Barker-Haaland is an insurance company located in Corvallis that upgraded its HVAC system. The primary goal was to improve employee comfort and hence, employee productivity. The old system, with inefficient HVAC equipment and an undersized air conditioner, left employees either too warm or too cold. The company replaced its old furnace with a unit that reduced gas consumption 28 percent and will allow employees to eliminate portable electric space heaters. A new, properly sized air conditioner provided the same amount of cooling with 50 percent less electricity. A continuous speed fan was replaced with a variable speed fan that reduced fan electric load by 42 percent. While the energy savings are important, the improved employee productivity made possible by a more comfortable office delivers far more. A two percent labor productivity improvement would pay for the HVAC retrofit in one year.
        Find out more about Barker-Haaland's energy efficiency initiatives at http://www.deq.state.or.us/wmc/solwaste/

Plug Loads
        Computers, copiers, printers, fax machines and other electronic equipment represent a significant share of office electricity use, especially if equipment is left on unnecessarily. A great deal of demand reduction can be accomplished by enabling power management features with Energy Star computers and monitors, which will cause the equipment to fall "asleep" if left untended for a specified period of time. Also, employees can be trained to turn off their computers and monitors at the end of their work shifts. It is a common misconception that computers will last longer if left running all the time. Power management features also should be enabled in Energy Star printers, copiers and fax machines.
        In a 1999 study conducted in offices of the city and county of San Francisco, researchers from Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory found that enabling power management features and turning equipment off at the end of work shifts could conceivably reduce workstation power consumption by approximately 50 percent. In tests, the researchers found that user education could drive "leave-on-all-night" rates down to 5-10 percent in the case of personal work station equipment. For shared equipment, such as copiers, the success rate was not as high, down to approximately 50 percent.
        Find out more at http://eetd.lbl.gov/BEA/SF/GuideR.pdf.

electricity         Industrial motors are the single largest electricity user in the U.S. economy, representing one-fourth of the nation's power consumption. On average, proven efficiency technologies could reduce electric motor system energy usage by 11 percent to 18 percent. About 62 percent of the total savings could be achieved through improvements in fluid systems - pumps, fans and compressors. Improvements include elimination of system inefficiencies by, for example, eliminating unnecessary loops and increasing pipe diameters to reduce friction. Variable speed drives offer efficiency savings by allowing operators to adjust motor speed to loads. Fixing leaks in compressor systems is a significant opportunity to tighten up plant operations.
        Cold storage plants are examples of Northwest industrial facilities that have discovered the benefits of installing variable frequency drives for running fan motors.
        ** example: Henningsen Cold Storage in Gresham, Ore., installed variable speed drives and cut energy bills by 30-40 percent. In addition, the new technology allows for greater control of temperatures and air flows.
        ** example: Birmingham Steel in Seattle has reduced its electricity load by 10 percent in the last three years through process changes, including installation of variable speed drives on motors.
        ** example: Whittier Wood Products, an unfinished furniture manufacturer in Eugene, installed a more efficient fan and baghouse system for dust collection, reducing the system's energy costs by one-third and increasing its air flow by 12 percent.


Heating and Cooling
        Heating and cooling account for half or more of your home's energy consumption. To make the most efficient use of your investment in heating (or cooling) system, and to enhance indoor comfort, it's important to "weatherize" with insulation and sealing. Your home's insulation needs will vary depending on climate and type of heating system. To find out how much you need and how to buy insulation, visit http://www.ornl.gov/roofs+walls/
        It's also a good idea to seal heating ducts to prevent heat loss and prevent dangerous backdrafts of combustion gases. A home with leaky ducts can lose 15-30 percent of heated air. To find out more about sealing ducts, visit http://www.energyoutlet.com/res/ducts.

Water Heating
        Water heating is the second largest energy consumer in the home. To get the most out of your water heater, especially an older one, start by wrapping it in an insulation blanket. Lower the setting to 120 degrees. Install faucet aerators and low-flow showerheads, and wash clothing in cold water whenever possible. Take shorter showers. If your water heater is more than 12 years old, consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient model. To find out more about water heating, visit http://www.energyoutlet.com/res/waterheat.

        When the time comes to replace appliances, choose Energy Star models (http://www.energystar.gov). You can find Energy Star refrigerators, clothes washers, dishwashers, and air conditioners. Also, Energy Star home electronics are available, including computers and peripherals, televisions, and VCRs.

        One of the easiest energy efficiency measures households can adopt is to replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs. Compact fluorescents last six to 10 times longer and use one-fourth the energy. While they cost more up front, they deliver savings over time. Newer models deliver soft, warm light, come on instantly, and don't flicker. It's best to install them in fixtures that are hard to reach, and in fixtures where the light is on at least three hours per day. To find out more about efficient lighting, visit the Lighting Design Lab at http://lightingdesignlab.com/residential. end


The Pollution Prevention Northwest newsletter is moving to an electronic-only subscription. The content and format will continue to feature current Northwest P2 topics and resources. We're only changing the delivery mechanism, and the environmental impact of printing and mailing the newsletter!

To continue your subscription, we need your help and the following information:

1) Your preferred newsletter format (PDF attachment, or Text-only)
2) Your name & address
3) Your e-mail address

Please contact PPRC with the above information in one of these ways:
* Phone - Crispin at 206-352-2050
* Internet - http://www.pprc.org/


Seattle City Light Energy Smart Services
Free information and on-site technical assistance for Seattle businesses

Water Smart Technology (Seattle and 26 water purveyors in King County)

Commercial and industrial customers are eligible for incentive payments of up to 70 or 80%, respectively, for efficiency improvements. For a limited time, extra incentives are also available. Seattle City Light also offers facility assessments, design assistance, and building commissioning services. Small businesses are eligible for rebates for installing energy-efficient lighting.

Seattle City Light Residential Programs

Free conservation kits available with two compact fluorescent light bulbs and a faucet aerator. Rebates available for efficient clothes washers and water heaters. Multi-family residential developers can qualify for rebates by installing efficient appliances.

Puget Sound Energy Efficiency Services
Rebates available for commercial lighting fixtures, programmable thermostats, and other equipment. Grants available for commercial and industrial retrofits and new construction that includes efficient space conditioning, lighting, motors, process equipment, etc. Bonus available for projects completed by 12/31/01. Web-based energy profiles help businesses benchmark usage and residences to shift energy use to less expensive hours.

Tacoma Power business services

Audits, technical assistance, and zero-interest loans for efficiency improvements are available.

Tacoma Power residential services

Weatherization grants and zero-interest loans details. Design assistance is available for new construction.

Clark Public Utilities
Technical assistance, financial assistance, and benchmarking services are available to commercial customers and industrial customers.


Portland General Electric business services
Financial incentives and technical assistance are available for new commercial construction, building retrofits, and industrial process improvements. Building retrofits eligible for commissioning. Qualified lighting and cooling equipment installations eligible for rebates.

Portland General Electric residential services

Home energy audits available. Rebates and low-interest loans available for weatherization, efficient water heaters.

PacifiCorp's Energy FinAnswer program provides a package of analysis, design assistance, financing assistance, commissioning and post-installation savings verification for commercial and industrial projects. Financial incentives available for small retrofits.

Eugene Water & Electric Board
Business programs include rebates for high-efficiency industrial motors, audits, financing,and post-installation commissioning. Residential programs include discounts and loans for solar water heaters, grants & zero-interest loans for duct sealing, rebates for energy- efficient home construction, zero-interest loans for heat pumps.


Avista Utilities

Technical assistance and financial incentives available

Idaho Power

Business audits available


Energy Ideas Clearinghouse
Technical assistance, library research & searchable database. Software tools for building design, motors, HVAC, compressed air, lighting, steam systems, & more.

Office of Industrial Technologies
Financing and technical assistance tools, downloadable software, publications, manuals, and case studies.

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Network
Publications, tips and tools for residential, commercial, and industrial sectors

Lighting Design Lab
Classes, consultations, modeling, software, library
Find out how energy efficiency measures produce spinoff benefits: improved productivity, better employee retention, and enhanced quality of work life.

Oregon Tax Credits


State income tax credits available for residents purchasing efficient appliances, sealing ducts, or installing geothermal or solar space heating systems. Businesses can qualify for tax credits for efficiency, renewable energy, and recycling projects.

Online energy efficiency newsletter for the Northwest

Sandy Rock
Environment and Health Research Director


        I got involved with environmental issues in the Sixties. Yes, I go back that far. In fact, I was the only student in my medical school class of eighty (UVA, 1970) that did a stint in Public Health (and then went on to get my Masters in Public Health after my internship). Pollution prevention (P2) is the ultimate preventive medicine, so the connection was easy for me to make. While I am a relative newcomer to the regulatory, bureaucratic and acronymic aspects of this field, the public health and economic benefits have been clear to me for a long time. After twenty years of clinical medicine, I finally realized that my true calling was Public and Environmental Health. Sandy Rock
        My work with the Hanford Health Information Network (HHIN) drew me into the worlds of environmental risk assessment, risk communication and toxicology, not to mention environmental justice. Exposure to radioactive materials was the issue there, and I became more and more interested in (and concerned about) the myriad chemicals to which we are exposed and the pathways by which they reach us. PBTs became a special focus of mine, but harmful exposures of all kinds - from woodsmoke to noise (such as leafblowers) to tobacco smoke - have been on my radarscope for years.
        I see the biggest challenge to be the non-point sources of environmental contaminants. This means that we need to focus our attention on public education and jurisdictional regulation of traditionally ignored sources of pollution. This also means challenging long-held beliefs and habits that the American public, especially, has held. Consider that the most polluting activities in our neighborhoods include mowing the grass, blowing around the detritus (ugh!), barbecuing in the back yard, having a fire in the fireplace, and driving one's car…. and you can see what a challenge this will be. Fortunately, technologies are evolving at an impressive clip, and as we educate people about the health hazards of things they take for granted - remember when we didn't have seat belts and air bags? - we can offer alternatives to them at the same time. end

Northwest Local Governments Protect the Climate
        Despite little action at the federal level, Northwest local governments are taking charge and figuring out how to reduce their emissions of greenhouse gases.
        PORTLAND - The city of Portland and Multnomah County recently released their "Local Action Plan on Global Warming" which calls for a 10% reduction (below 1990 levels) in greenhouse gas emissions by 2010. Energy efficiency and renewable energy figure prominently in the plan, and transportation-related initiatives form the biggest single source of prospective lowered emissions. Check out the plan at http://www.sustainableportland.org/
Portland Global Warming Plan.pdf
        SEATTLE - The Seattle City Council and Seattle's Mayor have pledged to cut carbon dioxide emissions by at least 7% from 1990 levels, and to strive to cut three times that much. Largely through conservation and purchases of wind power, Seattle has committed to meet rising local electricity demands with no net increase of greenhouse gas emissions. Read the City Resolution at http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/
        OTHER NORTHWEST CITIES - The cities of Corvallis, Ore.; Burien, Wash.; and Olympia, Wash. are also moving forward on this issue. They're all part of the Cities for Climate Protection Campaign through the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI; http://iclei.org/us/US_ccp.html), and are part of a worldwide effort of local governments taking action to reduce global warming.

New PPRC Healthcare Report
        PPRC's latest publication features P2 in the healthcare sector. It's chock full of resources on sustainable hospitals, mercury reduction, PVC and phthalate reduction, green purchasing, pharmaceutical disposal, and more.
        View the report at http://www.pprc.org/pprc/pubs/

National Recycling Coalition Meeting
        The annual congress of the National Recycling Congress Annual will be in Seattle from September 30 - October 3, 2001. The meeting will feature lots of waste prevention, as well as recycling, information. For more information, including a draft agenda, visit http://www.nrc-recycle.org (click on "annual congress") or call 703-683-9025.

The Natural Step and Auto Repair
        Looking for a guide to help implement The Natural Step into sector work? Oregon Department of Environmental Quality recently developed materials specific for automotive mechanical and collision repair shops. The report, "Using The Natural Step Framework to Develop a Plan Toward Sustainability for Automotive Shops," can be viewed at http://www.pprc.org/
. end

Practical solutions for big environmental problems
PPRC, a non-profit organization, is the Northwest's leading source of high quality, unbiased environmental solutions information. Through a collaborative approach, we focus on solutions that integrate resource efficiency and environmental health into business, government, and communities. Board of Directors:
President: Richard Bach, Stoel Rives, Portland
Vice President: Joan Cloonan, J.R. Simplot Company, Boise
Vice President: Kirk Thompson, The Boeing Company, Seattle
Secretary: Dana Rasmussen, Seattle
Jeff Allen, Ore. Environmental Council, Portland
Rod Brown, Marten & Brown LLP, Seattle
Charles Findley, EPA Region 10, Seattle
Scott Forest, Forrest Paint Co., Eugene
Tom Korpalski, Hewlett-Packard, Boise
Alan Schuyler, Phillips Alaska, Anchorage
Chris Wiley,
  Executive Director
Cathy Buller,
  Events, Networking & Marketing Lead
Al Campbell,
  Administrative Assistant
L.B. Sandy Rock, MD, MPH,
  Environment & Health Research Director
Ana Simon,
  Chief Financial Officer
Crispin Stutman,
  Information Services Manager
Pollution Prevention Northwest is published quarterly by PPRC. Part or all of the newsletter may be copied. Articles may be reprinted or distributed electronically only in their entirety with written permission from PPRC. Please credit the author (if any), followed by "Pollution Prevention Northwest, PPRC." To receive a free electronic subscription, contact PPRC.
Layout: Crispin Stutzman
Content Author: Jim DiPeso
Web Design: Crispin Stutzman
Address: 513 1st Ave. W, Seattle, WA 98119
Telephone: 206-352-2050
Fax: 206-352-2049
E-mail: office@pprc.org


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