Utah has had a strong P2 program for over 10 years and much progress has been achieved. As Utah continues to plan for its future, many new opportunities are identified for the P2 program to get involved with. During the last two years and for the next I 1/2 years, Utah's main P2 thrust in Olympic preparation. Many programs which have been initiated over the years are still active and we continue to be involved with and support. Below is a summary of our current and ongoing work projects.
I . 2002 Winter Olympic Games
-Environmental and Public Health Alliance
-Utah Environmental Partners
2. Green Label
3. Annual Debate Project
4. Small Business
Energy Star Programs:
Energy Star Building Label. Ten Denver office buildings, including Denver Place, which houses EPA's Region 8 offices, have earned Energy Star Building Label plaques for their efforts to conserve energy and reduce the amount of pollutants released into the air. To qualify, buildings must score in the upper 25 percent of all buildings in the United States for energy efficiency. We will continue to promote Energy Star buildings and examine ways to describe and report economic benefits associated with the program.
In late August, 40 commercial building managers/owners attended seminars. at the Region's Conference Center on using Energy Star Building's Quikscope software program to determine where the greatest energy savings may be made, and the Benchmarking Tool for rating a building's overall energy efficiency.
Small Business: Congregations Program. This program focuses on energy savings for churches and synagogues. Information packets have been mailed to over 50 denominational headquarters offices located in Region 8 states. The P2 team is working on a technical assistance project at the Denver Rescue Mission.
Small Business Restaurant Program. A workshop was held to acquaint area health department restaurant inspectors and P2 coordinators with energy savings programs for restaurants. This information can be conveyed to restaurant owners and managers as a part of regular inspections.
Energy Star Homes Program. There are now 107 builders and allies participating in the program in Region 8 and 523 new homes are included in the Energy Star Homes Program. Region 8 will continue to build on the success of these partnerships.
Partnership Program. There are 114 business 'partners' in the 100,000+ square feet category, 70 in the small business category, as well as 40 'allies', for a total of 224, an increase of 104 over the past year. Owners or managers of buildings that do not qualify for the building label are encouraged to join in the partnership program. We plan to continue participation in the program.
Energy Star Labeled Products. New office equipment purchased in Region 8, including computers, fax machines, and photocopiers, has Energy Star labels.
Materials Usage/Waste Minimization
The Region 8 Green Team. The Green Team is a group of volunteers charged with developing and implementing pollution prevention practices at the EPA Region 8 office. The team has taken a lead role in implementing pollution prevention, waste reduction, recycling and alternative commuting strategies at the Region 8 office and laboratory. After assessing the resource use, waste streams and procurement practices of the Regional office, the team undertook several projects, focusing on waste reduction, recycling, alternative fuels for government vehicles and environmentally preferred purchasing (EPP). Paper is the largest waste strewn in the Regional office. From May 1998 until August 1999, Region 8 recycled 32.5 tons of paper.
The Green Team has issued a booklet, "How to Go Green at EPA", a compendium of information on P2 measures that employees can take to reduce, reuse and recycle. Specific information includes electronic communications, two sided copying and printing, reusable dishes and utensils, purchasing, and recycling. Information contained in the booklet is being presented at program staff meetings throughout the Regional office.
WasteWi$e. The WasteWi$e program was developed by EPA to assist businesses in taking cost effective actions to reduce solid waste. Companies that accept the WasteWi$e challenge commit to achievements in three areas: 1) preventing waste (source reduction), 2) collecting recyclables, and 3) increasing the manufacture or purchase of recycled products. Any company, institution, or non-profit organization may join WasteWi$e as a partner. Trade associations and other membership organizations may join as endorsers, which promote the program to their members.
In the coming year, the Region 8 P2 team will support the WasteWi$e effort to recruit federal facilities as partners in the program. EPA Region 8 intends to become a WasteWi$e partner. Members of the Region 8 P2 team participated in a WasteWi$e forum, "Buying Recycled: The Real Story About Cost, Availability, and Quality".
Jobs Through Recycling (JTR). In the last 4 years, region 8 states have received funding from the Jobs Through Recycling (JTR) Program to participate in five projects. Projects have included improved composting in the Glenwood Springs, Lamar and Yuma/Sterling areas and the start up of the Recycling Development Incubator (RDI). RDI, a project of Eco-Cycle in Boulder, first received funding in 1997 to provide business and technical assistance to recycling entrepreneurs. In 1999, Eco-Cycle received additional JTR funds to improve recycling entrepreneurs' access to financing.
Environmentally Preferable Products (EPP). EPP ensures that environmental considerations are included in federal agency purchasing decisions, along with traditional factors such as price and performance. The EPP program provides guidance for federal agencies to facilitate purchases of goods and services that pose fewer burdens on the environment. We are developing an EPP handbook, desk reference, poster and bookmark to facilitate EPP implementation in Region 8.
These materials may also serve as an example to be adapted by other government agencies as well as by businesses and other organizations. EPP training will be conducted for Regional employees with purchasing responsibilities. The P2 team has given presentations on environmentally preferable purchasing to other agencies, including GSA, the National Wildlife Refuge at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal, Wester Area Power Administration, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs.
Plastic Lumber. Region 8, the National Park Service, and the Army Corps of Engineers are cooperating in an EPP project to test the feasibility of using plastic lumber (i.e., building materials made from recycled plastics) in certain construction projects at selected national parks. Project activities will include designing and building structures such as boardwalks, fences and guard rails using plastic lumber, and development of a purchasing tool kit for use by the Park Service. We are working with the Army Corps of Engineers to examine the use of plastic wood in structural applications.
Yellowstone Cleaning Products Project. Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks were even "greener" this summer as a result of a joint project funded by the National Park Service (NPS), EPA Region 8 and the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality to reduce the toxicity of cleaning and janitorial products used in various park operations by substituting environmentally preferable products. The pilot phase of the project demonstrated that it is possible to meet park cleaning needs using such products. Yellowstone was also able to reduce the number of different cleaning products needed by 88%, from 130 to 15. The results of this project will be documented in a publication. Considering the number and variety of Yellowstone's operations, this will lead to significant cost savings in addition to the environmental benefits.
PAM Project. Region 8's P2 program is participating in a sustainable agriculture project in the Brighton, CO, area involving the use of polyacrylamides (PAM) in irrigation water to help reduce soil erosion and the leaching of fertilizers and pesticides. Polyacrylamides are white,
water soluble high polymers based on acrylamide- they are used as thickening or suspending agents in water-based formulation. A test is underway in Weld County to determine how much PAM increases the efficiency of chemical applications. The demonstration is testing PAM's
Although the results are preliminary, tests showed that on the corn field, PAM save 473 pounds of soil, 0.97 pounds of nitrogen and 0.66 pounds of phosphorus per irrigation, per acre, Which translates to saving of $5.73 per acre. When Lorsban 15G was applied, PAM saved 1.85 pounds of Lorsban per acre in the irrigation after application, at a savings of $4.24 per acre. Cost to apply PAM is estimated at $5.00 per acre. We will work with other agencies and grower groups to promote the environmental and economic benefits of PAM.
P2 Assessments for a Colorado Dairy. The Region 8 P2 Program sponsored a multi-media pollution prevention assessment of a dairy in Northern Colorado, offering suggestions on the use of more efficient motors and fuels and expansion of animal waste composting operations.
Pesticide Risk Reduction. Region 8 is supporting several projects to reduce risks of pesticides on agricultural crops, including integrated pest management (IPM) for alfalfa and dryland wheat in Wyoming and for sugar beets in North Dakota; precision application of corn herbicides in Colorado, stored grain pest management with temperature control in Montana. We also plan to fund a project utilizing IPM for mosquito abatement in endangered fish habitat in Utah.
Tribal Sustainable Agriculture. A grant awarded to the Rosebud Sioux Tribe in South Dakota will support the development of organic farming and permaculture activities, renewable energy, and farmers markets on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation. Results will be shared throughout South Dakota and the nation.
Ski Industry Project. EPA has provided a grant to the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment to identify and implement innovative P2 measures in the ski industry. The Aspen Skiing Company and Arapahoe Basin Ski Area have agreed to cooperate in the demonstration projects. A survey of P2 practices in ski areas has been conducted and P2 assessments have been performed to examine P2 opportunities. The project will include a report of P2 practices implemented and training sessions for other ski areas.
Urban Landscape IPM. An integrated pest management project for urban landscape plants is being implemented in Missoula County, MT. The program includes a scouting network to determine the levels of pets or diseases in landscape plants, alternative treatment recommendations, development of educational materials, and training sessions about IPM techniques. This program might be used as a model for other urban areas. Pesticide incidents resulting from ornamental and turf applications are a growing problem for state pesticide programs.
Environmental Management System Review (EMRs) in Region 8. EMRs examine how various management systems at federal facilities operate to ensure environmental compliance. EMRs use the frame work of a federal interagency document called the "Generic Protocol for Conducting Environmental Audits at Federal Facilities". Phase III of the "Generic Protocol" discusses procedures for reviewing the eight disciplines which comprise environmental management systems: 1) organizational structure, 2) environmental commitment, 3) environmental protection programs, 4) formality of environmental programs, 5) internal and external communications, 6) staff resources/development/training, 7) program evaluation/ reporting/ corrective action, and 8) environmental planning/risk management.
Region 8 has completed environmental management system reviews at EPA's Region 8 Laboratory; the Western Area Power Administration Rocky Mountain Region, and the U.S. Postal Service District Office Vehicle Maintenance Facility. All three facilities ranked very high in meeting the eight EMR disciplines, especially in the areas of organizational structure, environmental commitment, staff resources/development/training, and environmental Planning/risk management. We intend to conduct at least two EMRs annually.
EPA Environmental Education Legacy. Region 8 spent the past summer working with Yellowstone National Park in a unique partnership program with the National Park Service. The purpose of the partnership is to promote environmental awareness and sustainable national park environments through education. A Region 8 employee created educational posters on air and water pollution, source reduction for household hazardous waste, recycling, and other important environmental issues which were placed in visitor centers around the park.
EPA also assisted park staff in obtaining technical information on disposal of diesel contaminated soil; helped with EPA grants for recycling and solid-waste composting and developed an integrated solid waste management plan for the park. A Region 8 P2 employee also helped package and dispose of hazardous chemicals, represented EPA at a meeting to discuss alternative-fuel vehicles for the Greater Yellowstone communities, and helped establish EPA support to provide technical assistance to Yellowstone National Park for the new sustainably built visitor center at Old Faithful. The environmental education legacy experience will be used to develop educational and interpretive programs for other land management agencies.
Children's Health Initiative. Children are particularly vulnerable to environmental health risks because of their developing systems and because they eat proportionately more food, drink more fluids, and breathe more air per pound of body weight. Because of their inherent behavior of crawling on the floor and playing outside and their lack of understanding about environmental risks, children are more susceptible to environmental exposures.
EPA has a national agenda to protect children from environmental health risks, including: 1) ensuring that all standards EPA sets are protective of the potentially-heightened risks faced by children, 2) identifying and expanding scientific research on children's specific susceptibility and exposure to environmental pollutants, 3) developing comprehensive new policies to address cumulative and simultaneous exposures faced by children, and 4) expanding community right-to-know to allow families to make informed choices concerning environmental exposures.
Region 8 has established an agency-wide work group to address the Children"s Health Initiative Implementation will include developing children's health profiles for the Region 8 states, providing parents and children with basic information so they can take individual responsibility for protecting themselves from environmental health threats, expanding educational efforts with health, environmental and industry professionals to identify, prevent, and reduce environmental health threats to children, and funding selected projects to address environmental health threats to children.
A Colorado advisory committee was formed and convened to design and develop issues in support of a Colorado forum. The forum, held at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) in May 1999, was the first formal step toward bridging the gap between environmental and health officials. It focused on asthma, lead and pesticide exposure. EPA and CDPHE will continue to build a partnership and network on children's health.
Outreach and Technical Assistance