SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today named 22 Illinois companies and organizations winners of the Governor’s Pollution Prevention Awards for significant achievements in helping the environment and the economy.
"Pollution prevention is good for our economy and for retaining and creating jobs, which are priorities for my administration,” Blagojevich said. “These award winners are leaders in their industries and specialties because of their ongoing commitment to the environment, their communities and their employees. Many of them have sustained pollution prevention programs over a number of years, striving to find new ways to reduce waste and operate more efficiently.”
The 17th annual Governor's Pollution Prevention Awards were presented in Springfield during a luncheon hosted by the Waste Management and Research Center (WMRC), a division of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources.
"The exceptional accomplishments by these companies in reducing, reusing and recycling waste and improving air and water quality are enhancing our environment and conserving valuable natural resources," said IDNR Director Joel Brunsvold.
The recipients reported pollution prevention projects with combined annual savings of $13.4 million in material and disposal costs. The companies prevented nearly 127,500 tons of waste materials from being released into the environment and saved more than 40 million gallons of water from being sent to treatment facilities.
Applicants were judged in statewide competition on criteria including technological innovation, environmental significance, economic benefits and commitment to pollution prevention. WMRC pollution prevention engineers reviewed the applications, while the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency determined company environmental compliance.
"Again this year, we were impressed with the variety and quality of the projects undertaken by the winning companies," said George Vander Velde, WMRC Director. "These businesses and organizations have proven that pollution prevention makes good sense for the environmental and economic health of Illinois. They have achieved their pollution prevention goals and saved millions of dollars in pollution control, waste disposal, energy and raw material costs."
Information on the Governor's Pollution Prevention Awards program and technical assistance on pollution prevention are available from the Waste Management and Research Center, One East Hazelwood Drive, Champaign, IL 61820, phone 217/333-8940, www.wmrc.uiuc.edu
2003 GOVERNOR'S POLLUTION PREVENTION AWARD WINNERS
Large Industry Catergory
Maytag Herrin Laundry Products in Herrin is a manufacturer of household washers and dryers. Recent pollution prevention efforts have focused on source reduction of paint and cleaning solvents, water conservation and reuse, preventive maintenance, energy conservation, and solid material recycling. A highlight of these efforts was a solvent reduction project in the paint line flushing operation of the wet topcoat system. The results include a reduction of 33 percent of annual waste paint and solvent, a reduction of 14,000 pounds of paint gun cleaner solvent emissions, and savings of $10,000 in waste disposal and solvent use.
General Electric Industrial Systems in Bloomington is a manufacturer of electrical controls. Pollution prevention activities included installation of controllers to reduce water usage on its plating line and conductivity meters to control water on its rinse lines, saving two million gallons of water and $14,000 in operating cost during the last year. Energy conservation projects included machine and lighting timers and minimizing the size of the plant’s backup air compressor to reduce operating cost, saving more than 733,000 kWh and $36,000 in operating cost.
Nestle' Brands Company, Beverage Division in Jacksonville manufactures and packages Coffee-mate® coffee whitener. The plant reduced the use of hazardous materials and hazardous waste generation by 31 percent; replaced fluorescent lamps with low mercury content bulbs, reducing energy costs and decreasing disposal costs by 45 percent; changed the product formula to increase production, lower air emissions by nearly 31 tons per year and save $76,000; and, saved more than $110,000 in energy costs and avoided purchase of a $500,000 air compressor by identifying equipment and process line air leaks.
Dynamic Manufacturing, Inc. in Melrose Park is a family-owned company that re-manufactures transmissions and torque converters. The company has been converting to water soluble cleaners from more hazardous solvents and is evaluating the use of ultrasonics in the cleaning process to extend the life of the caustic cleaner baths. During the re-manufacturing process, fluid is circulated through the transmission while it is operated at test speeds. This fluid is collected, filtered, and reused in further testing. The amount of transmission fluid recycled in 2002 was 73,000 gallons with an annual savings of $193,000.
ITT Bell and Gossett in Morton Grove is a leading manufacturer of pumps, valves and engineered systems for the heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) market. The firm set up a coolant recycling unit, converting 75 percent of the company's machines to a long-life synthetic coolant. It installed a system to deliver recycled pre-mixed coolant to 60 machines running the new synthetic coolant; converted a parts washer to a product that extends the cleaner life; and, started a coolant maintenance program and set up an automated collection program to recycle 100 percent of coolant at the plant. The efforts have reduced waste by 120,000 gallons per year, saving $60,000.
Mitsubishi Electric Automation, Inc. in Vernon Hills is a manufacturer of control devices and integrated systems for factory automation applications. Waste reductions include using 33 percent less electricity through upgraded lighting; development of an aerosol chemical elimination program that resulted in a 95 percent reduction in the amount of aerosol-based chemicals used on site; and, eliminating aerosol can hazardous waste and reducing chemical costs by 55 percent. Additionally, the company implemented a program to recycle or reuse foamed packing material.
Ondeo Nalco Company in Bedford Park is a specialty chemical company manufacturing a variety of colloidal silica products used for casting of metal parts and ceramic forms. The plant installed a more efficient manufacturing technology requiring less steam, water and wastewater treatment, saving water and natural gas amounting to approximately $820,000 per year. The new manufacturing process requires one-fifth the amount of steam compared to the older system, annually saving 125 million cubic feet of gas and related emissions. The process also saves approximately 28.2 million gallons of water per year and 32,000 gallons of treatment chemicals.
Small Industry Category
ASC Incorporated in Normal is the provider of a convertible top for Mitsubishi autos. The plant has implemented a core return program in which 100 percent of thread, welt and binding cores are recycled; a redesign of cutting dies that has reduced landfill waste of 22 tons annually by 25 percent; and, has seen energy savings of three percent annually.
Five Corners Cleaners in Glen Ellyn is a third generation family-owned business. The cleaners replaced its existing equipment with state of the art technology that utilizes an environmentally preferable, biodegradable cleaning material, reducing hazardous waste to zero and air emissions by 93 percent. The owners believe lower environmental taxation and reduced hazardous waste removal will pay for the capital improvements over time and that improvements in the environment are an investment in the future.
Educational Institution Award
Spring Wood Middle School in Hanover Park developed a program to review its inventory of chemicals in science laboratories and remove any unneeded chemicals, compiling a list of 120 different chemicals no longer needed. The school worked with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) to separate, box and remove the chemicals. In addition, the school created a chemical inventory binder containing an emergency response guidebook and Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for all chemicals currently used. Students are provided with lab chemical safety training as part of the current curriculum. The school will also purchase chemicals only in quantities needed to reduce waste.
Service Organization Award
Byron Forest Preserve District in Byron has a mission to provide for preservation of natural resources, to provide education about natural and cultural heritage, and provide recreation. The district developed a recycling station and is educating hundreds of students on recycling through the International Earthkeepers program. Materials from the recycling station are collected and sorted twice a month, producing up to three tons of recyclable material like cardboard, glass, newspaper, plastic, and metals monthly. The cost of hauling is covered through a cooperative agreement with the county solid waste management department.
Continuous Improvement - Large Company Category
Abbott Laboratories in North Chicago discovers, develops, manufactures and markets health care products and services. The firm’s pollution prevention projects included introducing a new, smaller package design reducing more than 580,000 pounds of packaging material; replacing hazardous chemicals in pharmaceutical processes, saving $1.1 million, reducing methanol by 55,605 pounds and reducing hazardous waste by 48,700 pounds; and, purchasing a tub-grinding machine that recycles tree limbs and bushes as mulch, providing 95 percent of landscaping needs for annual savings of $36,780.
Caterpillar, Inc., Technical Services Division (TSD) in Mossville provides support services to Caterpillar business units in all aspects of product development. Pollution prevention activities include redesign of an off-highway truck to reduce noise pollution without sacrificing machine performance or serviceability. The TSD began using "real time" analysis to measure the level of soot in engine oil, saving $570,000 annually in test time, fuel, energy use and air emissions. TSD also installed adjustable speed drives, electronic sensors and automated building controls to increase energy efficiency. Ventilation fans, cooling tower fans and water pumps fitted with this technology conserved 5.9 million kWh and prevented the emission of more than 12 million pounds of chemicals.
International Truck and Engine Corporation in Melrose Park has reduced solvent use through the addition of self-distilling parts washers, environmentally friendly alternative cleaners, and an efficient tracking program to limit solvent issues. International has reduced waste coolant losses from the engine testing process by 90 percent through the installation of a closed loop cooling process. An oil lapping process in the crankshaft-machining department has been replaced with a synthetic coolant that has reduced oil waste and increased process efficiency. Improvements in energy management were attained with the addition of departmental lighting controls and continued upgrades in equipment efficiencies. These efforts resulted in a savings of $719,370 for 2002.
Sherwin Williams - Minwax in Flora is the only site in the country that manufactures Minwax wood stains, topcoats, and waxes of both the oil and water-base variety. The company implemented a wash recycling program which re-uses line flush solvent mixed with finished product that normally leaves the site as hazardous waste. Some production lines were modified to allow this solvent and wash to be collected and reintroduced into new blends as a raw material substitute. The program generated a savings of $183,840 and 876,840 pounds of waste last year. There are plans to increase the program while concurrently looking at ways to re-use the wash product to make other products.
Eaton Corporation in Lincoln is a manufacturer of electrical components for residential and light commercial/industrial markets. The plant is ISO 14001 certified and in 2002 developed a project to eliminate cyanide from the aluminum busbar plating process. The plant has eliminated three of the four plating solutions utilizing the cyanide plating process and converted to a non-cyanide technology. The elimination of the cyanide processes will be completed by January 2004. Elimination of approximately 15,000 pounds of cyanide per year has an estimated savings of $125,000 per year.
ITT McDonnell and Miller in Chicago develops steam and hot water boiler liquid level controls. Recent pollution prevention projects have yielded 58 percent reductions in machining coolant use through recycling; paint use was reduced by 88 percent through process redesign, while paint wastes and VOC emissions have also been reduced. Lead solder use was reduced 13 percent by switching some parts to lead-free solder. Electricity consumption has been reduced by 13 percent through use of energy efficient lamps and close monitoring of heavy equipment use. These projects have a total annual savings of $80,000.
Continuous Improvement - Medium Size Company Category
Amersham Health in Arlington Heights is a manufacturer of radiopharmaceuticals that are used in the diagnosis of disease using electronic imaging techniques. The company has invested more than $1.1 million to upgrade lighting, chillers, roof insulation, HVAC and exhaust systems. The improvements and conservation measures have reduced electrical consumption by 2,000 megawatts, resulting in an annual savings of $100,000. The installation of a closed-loop vacuum system reduced water use by 600,000 gallons per year, with a savings of approximately $3,000. Amersham also substituted the use of an environmentally hazardous fluid in its chiller systems; recycled approximately 82 tons of paper, cardboard, aluminum, and lead; and, donated chemicals to other companies instead of shipping them for treatment and disposal.
Gleason Cutting Tools Corporation in Loves Park is a manufacturer of gear cutting and finishing tools for industry and specialized markets. Gleason achieved multiple environmental objectives in the past year, including reducing solvent usage by 5,945 gallons at a savings of $19,296; reduced plating wastewater by 460 percent based on gallons per piece; reduced solid waste by 630 cubic yards, saving $8,738, through paper recycling; reduced use of sand media by 300 percent through recycling, saving $1,140; and, changed a process formula into a non-hazardous waste, saving $3,273.
Continuous Improvement - Small Company
Noveon Inc. in Henry produces chemical additives for the rubber, plastic, lubricant, coatings and personal care markets. Noveon developed a team to improve raw material efficiencies, reduce waste and improving product yield, including better using t-butyl amine recovery in one of the plant’s rubber accelerator processes. Employees recognized a problem with a vacuum control system. A modification resulted in improved vacuum control and t-butyl amine recovery, reducing waste treatment by 185,000 pounds annually, saving $220,000.
Crazy Horse Concrete, Inc., in New Berlin is a ready mix concrete producer. The company previously installed a system that retains all water and cement mixture slurry. The slurry water held in a retention area is allowed to solidify and is used as road building material. Last year, the firm installed a water chilling system in the reclamation system, cooling the slurry to be used as the main water source for newly batched ready mix concrete. The chiller system reduced solid material by five to seven thousand tons, reducing annual removal cost by approximately $20,000. Using slurry water as mix water has reduced use of city water by 1.3 million gallons, saving $4,000 annually.
Service Organization Category
Argonne National Laboratory in Argonne, one of the U.S. Department of Energy's largest research centers, has established programs in waste prevention, recycling, affirmative procurement, sustainable design, green chemistry, and environmental remediation, saving $11 million since 1996. In addition, the Laboratory's Pollution Prevention Advisory Committee initiated preliminary waste assessments on high volume/cost waste generators that resulted in annual waste reductions and savings of approximately $109,000 in FY 2002.
Innovate Illinois Award
The Innovate Illinois Award also was presented to International Truck and Engine Corporation during the Springfield event. The award is presented to a company that has developed and implemented a new technological innovation. International won the award for its Green Diesel Technology, an innovative integration of clean air technology and diesel performance made possible through years of product design and engineering. The new technology utilizes the benefits of a catalyzed diesel particulate filter and low-sulfur fuel in combination with an exclusive engine performance design that significantly lowers the emissions and odor of diesel-powered buses and trucks.