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News

EPA Strategic Plan Charts Direction for Next Four Years

Posted: April 10, 2014

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued its fiscal year (FY) 2014 to 2018 Strategic Plan today, which provides a blueprint for advancing EPA’s mission to protect public health and the environment across the country.

The plan envisions a new era of partnerships with state and local governments, tribes, federal agencies, businesses, and industry leaders to achieve environmental benefits in a pragmatic, collaborative way.

“EPA will address the increasingly complex array of environmental challenges we face by advancing a rigorous research and development agenda that informs and supports our policy and decision making with timely and innovative technology and sustainable solutions,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “We are heeding President Obama’s call for action on climate change, the biggest challenge for our generation and those to come by building strong partnerships at home and around the world. We are working to mitigate this threat by reducing carbon pollution and other greenhouse-gas emissions and by focusing on efficiency improvements in homes, buildings and appliances.”

The five strategic goals in EPA’s plan include:

• Addressing climate change and improving air quality;
• Protecting America’s waters;
• Cleaning up communities and advancing sustainable development;
• Ensuring the safety of chemicals and preventing pollution; and
• Protecting human health and the environment by enforcing laws and assuring compliance.
Read more


Product Claims 10% Fuel Savings

Posted: April 8, 2014
Source: Environmental Leader.com

DriveLogik says its new product can provide fleets with up to a 10 percent fuel savings per vehicle and reduced maintenance costs.  A hardware package and monthly subscription-based software reporting includes driver performance reports to help identify driver performance. Customized instant alerts via mobile devices also identify major driving events.

DriveLogik says a long-haul truck driving 112,000 miles per year can save an average of $5,500 in fuel costs. DriveLogik’s fleet management, tracking and reporting is powered by RiskLogik’s TrackLogik software.
Read more


Solar Panels Could Beam Power From Space Down to Earth, U.S. Navy Says

Posted: April 7, 2014
Source: Yale Environment 360

Researchers from the U.S. military are developing technology that would harvest solar energy in space and beam it down to Earth, according to the Naval Research Laboratory. Although the concept seems futuristic, the Navy is currently testing two prototype designs, both of which combine solar panels with electronic components that convert the energy to radio waves and transmit it to Earth. Eventually, engineers plan to use robotic vehicles to transport the panels to space and assemble them into a 1-kilometer wide satellite orbiting the planet. Theoretically, harvesting solar energy in space is more efficient than on Earth, because panels can collect sunlight around the clock and regardless of weather conditions. The U.S. military, currently the world’s largest oil consumer, is eager to develop the technology to save money on fuel and simplify military deployments. But the private sector also has plans for the technology: California utility company Pacific Gas & Electric plans to buy space solar power from Solaren within the next two years, and a Japanese company recently announced plans to build a 11,000-mile solar strip around the moon to capture solar energy.


American Honda Releases Two New Body Repair News Bulletins

Posted: April 7, 2014
Source: Body Shop Business.com

The first bulletin covers the 2015 Honda Fit model including new model body technology, body repair information, welding information and airbag systems. The second bulletin covers welding and sectioning guideline revisions that apply to all models.The bulletins have been issued in response to industry requests for more information about the proper repair of Honda and Acura vehicles as the amount of high-strength steel used in vehicles continues to increase.

Body Repair News summarizes new body and vehicle technology that may affect collision and other body repairs. It is not intended to replace the detailed information contained in the body repair and service manuals. Rather, it aims to help collision repair industry personnel understand why using the factory service information is so important to making safe and complete repairs.


More information:Visit techinfo.honda.com and techinfo.acura.com, then click the “Collision Repair Information and Industry Position Statements” link.


Green Hotel Webinar Series

Dear Colleague,

Join hoteliers and other professionals in this six-session webinar series. It’s designed to help you cut your property’s operating costs, attract customers and improve environmental performance.

Participants will learn how U.S. hotels reduce energy, water, waste and toxins; and get recognized for doing so. Each session will have three expert speakers.

Those who attend all six sessions will be acknowledged with a Certificate of Completion.

The webinars are funded by the U.S. EPA. They are organized by Dan Ruben of Boston Green Tourism and Peter Cooke of the Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences.

Sign up for as many sessions as you can!

View the webinars here!


Washoe County Health District Wins Prestigious EPA Clean Air Excellence Award

Washoe one of nine winners nationwide

SAN FRANCISCO – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today is presenting the 2014 Clean Air Excellence Award to the Washoe County Health District’s Air Quality Management Division for their innovative work launching the “Keep It Clean” public awareness campaign.

The campaign increases public awareness and engages the citizens of Reno, Sparks and Washoe County, on air quality issues. There are three major community action components to Keep It Clean: Know the Code, a woodburning advisory program; Rack Em Up, an alternative transportation program; and nOzone, a smog prevention program. Each of these encourages emissions reductions and empowers citizens to take positive actions to reduce ozone and particulate matter throughout the year.

“Washoe County’s clean air awareness campaign is helping citizens to take simple steps – like bike riding to school and reducing wood burning – that reduce ozone and particulate matter year round,” said Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest

“It’s a significant achievement for anyone to receive this award and it’s really something for a small County staff of 18 to be recognized,” said Washoe County Health District AQMD Director Charlene Albee.

From improving indoor air quality in Tribal communities in the Northwest to installing solar panels in Tennessee, award winners demonstrate a commitment to improving the air that we breathe and addressing climate change. This year’s other winners are:

Clean Air Technology
Montgomery County Resource Recovery Facility – Montgomery County Department of Environmental Protection, Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority, and Covanta Energy – Dickerson, MD
Community Action
Regional 8-Hour Ozone Flex Planning – Central Texas Clean Air Coalition – Austin, TX
Ducktown 28-Kilowatt Solar Array – City of Ducktown – Ducktown, TN
Education Outreach
Idle Free Louisville – Kentuckiana Air Education – Louisville, KY
Improving Tribal Indoor Air Quality — Tribal Healthy Homes Northwest – Issaquah, WA
Regulation/Policy Innovations
Seaport Air Quality Program – Port of Seattle – Seattle, WA
Transportation Efficiency Innovations
Clean School Bus NC: Kids Breathe Here – North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources and Department of Public Instruction – Raleigh, NC
FPL’s Clean Fleet and Consumer Education Program – Florida Power & Light Company – Juno, FL
Thomas W. Zosel Outstanding Individual Achievement Award
Richard A. Valentinetti – Vermont Agency of Natural Resources

For more information on Washoe County Health District’s campaign and graphics, please visit: www.ourcleanair.com
More information: http://www.epa.gov/air/cleanairawards/index.html

Media Contact: Margot Perez-Sullivan, perezsullivan.margot@epa.gov


Build & Buy Green 2014

HawaiiBuild&BuyGreen2014

This year’s Build & Buy Green (B&BG) Conference and Expo is going to Kaka’ako – The annual event is celebrating its’ 14th year in Hawaii!

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER NOW

This annual BBG Conference has brought together nationally acclaimed keynote speakers and local experts in the fields of green building, design, engineering, construction and development to discuss merging and critical global issues related to green building and communities in Hawaii CLICK FOR MORE INFORMATION

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD SAVE THE DATE PDF


California Names First Three Products under Safer Consumer Products Program

On March 13 California EPA and the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) announced the first three products under the Safer Consumer Products/ Green Chemistry Program.  The overall goal of the program, initiated by legislation in 2008, is to reduce toxic chemicals in consumer products and create business opportunities in the emerging safer consumer products economy.

The three priority products with specific chemicals listed are:  1) paint/varnish strippers and cleaners with methylene chloride, 2) spray polyurethane foam (SPF) systems with unreacted diisocyanates, and 3) children’s foam padded sleeping products with the flame retardant Tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TDCPP).

Next, DTSC will host three public workshops on the listed products in May and June.  After the workshops, DTSC will initiate rulemaking on the listed products. When final, manufacturers will be required to analyze alternatives to the chemicals in the products.

These chemicals are also being evaluated by EPA under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA).  U.S. EPA and California are collaborating on alternatives assessment, chemical data and advancement of safer products under the Green Chemistry MOU signed in 2012.

Visit DTSC Safer Consumer Products Website for more information.


EPA Honors Corporate Leadership in Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Center for Corporate Climate Leadership announced the third annual Climate Leadership Award winners in partnership with the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) and The Climate Registry (TCR). Nineteen awards were given to 15 organizations and two individuals in the public and private sectors for their leadership in addressing climate change by reducing carbon pollution. The 2014 Climate Leadership Award recipients are:

Organizational Leadership Award: City of Chula Vista, Sprint, and University of California, Irvine

Individual Leadership Award: Sam Brooks, Associate Director, D.C. Department of General Services, and Robert Taylor, Energy Manager, Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission

Supply Chain Leadership Award: Sprint

Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Achievement Award): The Boeing Company; Caesars Entertainment; Cisco Systems, Inc.; Ecolab; The Hartford; IBM; Johnson Controls; Kohl’s Department Stores; Mack Trucks; and Novelis

Excellence in Greenhouse Gas Management (Goal Setting Certificate): Fruit of the Loom, Inc.; Hasbro, Inc.; and Kohl’s Department Stores

More information about the 2014 Climate Leadership Awards


USGBC Releases Top 10 States in Nation for LEED Green Building

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its ranking of the Top 10 States for LEED®, the world’s most widely used and recognized green building rating system. The list highlights the regions around the country that are at the forefront of sustainable building design and transformation. Utilizing less energy, LEED-certified spaces save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce carbon emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.

The per-capita list is based on 2010 U.S. Census data and includes commercial and institutional green building projects that were certified throughout 2013. Among states, Illinois moved into the top position for LEED, certifying 171 projects representing 2.29 square feet of LEED space per resident.

The mid-Atlantic region reigned in 2013 with Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia all topping the list. Washington, D.C., had 106 LEED-certified projects representing 32.45 square feet of space per resident. Maryland and Virginia followed Illinois in the second and third positions, respectively, certifying 2.20 and 2.11 square feet of LEED space per resident in 2013.

New York and California, two of the most populous states in the nation, tied for fifth place, with each certifying 1.95 square feet of space per resident in 2013.

USGBC calculates the list using per-capita figures as a measure of the human element of green building, allowing for a fair comparison of the level of green building taking place among states with significant differences in population and, accordingly, number of overall buildings.

Reflecting the continued trend of LEED existing buildings outpacing their newly built counterparts, in 2013 the LEED for Building Operations and Maintenance rating system accounted for 48 percent of total square footage certified in these states. This compares to 43 percent of square footage certified under LEED for Building Design and Construction and 9 percent certified under LEED for Interior Design and Construction.

The full ranking is as follows:

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 1.08.08 PM

Notable projects in Region 9 that certified in these states in 2013 include:

• California: SFJAZZ Center in San Francisco, LEED Gold.

• Hawaii: Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa in Kapolei, LEED Silver, the largest certified project in the state.

Collectively, 1,777 commercial and institutional projects became LEED certified within the top 10 states in 2013, representing 226.8 million square feet of real estate. Worldwide, 4,642 projects were certified in 2013, representing 596.8 million square feet.

Cumulatively, more than 20,000 projects representing 2.9 billion square feet of space have been LEED-certified worldwide, with another 37,000 projects representing 7.6 billion square feet in the pipeline for certification. USGBC launched LEED v4, the newest version of the rating system, in the fall of 2013. The latest version continues to raise the bar for the entire green building industry, which McGraw-Hill Construction projects could be worth up to $248 billion in the U.S. by 2016. LEED v4 features increased technical rigor; new market sector adaptations for data centers, warehouses and distribution centers, hospitality, existing schools, existing retail, and midrise residential projects; and a simplified submittal process supported by a robust and intuitive technology platform.

About the U.S. Green Building Council

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. USGBC works toward its mission of market transformation through its LEED green building program, robust educational offerings, a nationwide network of chapters and affiliates, the annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo, the Center for Green Schools and advocacy in support of public policy that encourages and enables green buildings and communities. For more information, visit usgbc.org, explore the Green Building Information Gateway (GBIG) and connect on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

About LEED

The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction, maintenance and operations of green buildings. Every day, more than 1.5 million square feet of space is certified using LEED. More than 57,000 commercial and institutional projects are currently participating in LEED, comprising 10.5 billion square feet of construction space in 147 countries and territories. In addition, more than 50,000 residential units have been certified under the LEED for Homes rating system. Learn more at usgbc.org/LEED.

Read the USGBC Issued Press Release.