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Indiana Department of Environmental Management

Pollution Prevention

Pollution Prevention > Governor’s Awards for Environmental Excellence > Past Recipients > 2009 Governor's Awards Recipients 2009 Governor's Awards Recipients

Pollution Prevention Category

Church Brothers Collision Repair

Church Brothers was the first large collision repair group in Indiana to fully convert its paint refinishing system to a waterborne paint system in all six of its central Indiana locations. By converting to a more environmentally friendly waterborne paint, Church Brothers has reduced its volatile organic compound emissions during its refinishing operations by over 25%. The waterborne basecoat provides better coverage with less material sprayed on a given panel. Converting to a waterborne paint system has reduced the amount of hazardous waste generated and created a safer work environment for employees.

National Office Furniture Santa Claus

National Office Furniture is receiving a Governor’s Award for the development, construction and implementation of new furniture finish processes that eliminated the use of solvent-borne coatings and manual application of clearcoat finish materials. The Ultra-Violet flatline finishing system uses water-based, high solid finish materials in lieu of solvent-based clearcoats. Manual spray application has been automated to a combination flat line system of roll coating and flat line spray system. Additionally, the two old, continuous gas-fired ovens were replaced with programmable controlled electronic halogen ovens.

The combination of these technologies has resulted in a 50% reduction of volatile organic compounds from the clearcoating operations and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 301 tons per year. These innovative changes have also reduced employee as well as community exposure to harmful emissions.

Nu Yale Glacier Dry Cleaning

Nu Yale Cleaners installed the Solvair dry cleaning machine, the first in the southern Indiana and Louisville market, and only the ninth installation in the world. The Solvair dry cleaning machine eliminates the use of PERC and cleans with an environmentally friendly cleaning liquid that does not pollute the water and air. Liquids and supplies may be recycled and reused, and process wastes are managed with a system that eliminates emissions and ensures reclamation of recyclable materials.

The Solvair process has reduced hazardous waste by 2,071 pounds per year and waste water by 3,465 pounds per year. The Solvair removes a wider range of stains from garments, leaves no odors, and uses no heat to dry clothes. Quality is increased, while waste, utility costs, and health and environmental impacts are reduced.

Five Years of Continuous Improvement

DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc.

DePuy created and implemented an environmental management system at all of its manufacturing facilities and achieved ISO 14001 registration for its Warsaw facility. Through its environmental management system, DePuy has outlined its commitment to performance objectives, resource allocation, and continuous improvement. Facility representatives annually review the environmental management system to identify significant environmental aspects and set new goals to better control and reduce environmental impacts. All environmental information is tracked and reported annually for inclusion in the Johnson and Jonson Sustainability Report.

At the time of the Governor’s Award application, DePuy had accomplished their goals and made the following improvements:

  • In hazardous waste generation, the goal was 10% the result was 9%
  • In CO2 generation, the goal was 7 %, the result was .7%
  • In water usage, the goal was 10%, the result was 19%
  • In non-hazardous landfill waste, the goal was 10% the result 48%

Renewable Energy

Benton County Wind Farm LLC

The Benton County Wind Farm is Indiana’s first commercial-sized wind farm. The first phase of the project by Benton County Wind Farm LLC and Duke Energy consists of 67 wind turbines. The 67 wind turbines will produce emissions-free electricity, which will be distributed to home owners through the local power company and power 35,000 to 40,000 homes. The Benton County Wind Farm Project is located in the rural agricultural landscape of York and Richland townships of Benton County, Indiana.

The wind farm project will annually displace thousands of tons of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxides and carbon dioxide, and prevent the generation of thousands of tons of coal combustion byproducts. Additionally, the Benton County Wind Farm project produced hundreds of construction jobs and created eight permanent jobs in the area.

Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, Inc.

In 2008, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, Inc. (KIB) undertook the sustainable redevelopment of two vacant brownfield sites as its new headquarters in Indianapolis’ historic Fountain Square neighborhood. KIB wanted to consolidate their operations into one facility and serve as a civic example of energy efficiency and resource conservation.

Before the brownfield redevelopment, KIB was renting office space, using two separate warehouses for equipment and supply storage, and borrowing additional storage space for trees and plant materials. KIB estimated 350 hours were spent traveling between locations annually, wasting valuable time and energy.

KIB transformed the property into its new headquarters using energy efficient construction practices, including installing a “white cool roof system,” natural light and views, and high-efficiency appliances. KIB used low or no volatile organic compound paints and adhesives, and captures rainwater for use on plants and landscaping. KIB is seeking U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification. Over 3,000 people have toured the facility since it opened in June 2008.

Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing, Inc.

Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing reduced their carbon footprint by reviewing the facility’s major energy consuming systems and identifying opportunities to reduce energy consumption, improve performance and minimize costs. Additionally, independent energy audits assessed the efficiency of electricity and natural gas usage. The information gained from the self-review and external audits enabled Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing to establish an Energy Reduction Program.

During 2008, the Energy Reduction Program saved Toyota Industrial Equipment Manufacturing $166,017 by reducing electrical consumption by 2,218,444 kilowatt hours, or 12.3%, and natural gas usage by 13,277 decatherms, or 13.2%. This energy efficiency improvement also reduced the amount of CO2 emitted by 3,611.91 tons.

Recycling/Reuse Category

Caterpillar, Inc.

Caterpillar, Inc. challenged all of its facilities to obtain recycling rates of 100% and become landfill-free by 2020. In 2006, Caterpillar, Inc. in Lafayette aggressively sought to reach this milestone by 2008, 12 months ahead of schedule. As an engine manufacturer, they overcame many challenges due to the wide variety of types of waste they generated. Caterpillar conducted many “dumpster dives” to determine the best way to manage these various waste materials.

The methods used are “cutting edge.” In 2008, nearly eight million pounds of material was recycled or diverted from Indiana landfill in ways such as:

  • Wood pallets were shipped back for reuse or turned into mulch;
  • Paint gun solvent was distilled and returned for reuse;
  • Floor block was used as fuel in a steam-producing facility;
  • 56% recycled-content engines were produced; and,
  • 278 Six Sigma salvage related projects were implemented.

Caterpillar (Lafayette) has demonstrated and will continue to demonstrate that manufacturing and environmental initiatives go hand-in-hand.

City of Ligonier

The City of Ligonier successfully recycled and reused materials from the demolition of a 3-story building built in 1846, on the 4-acre former Essex Wire Brownfield site. This site is planned for redevelopment as the River Walk Park and fire station.

By tearing down the old building, historic bricks, beams and other materials were salvaged and used nationwide. Only an estimated 5-10% of the building materials were sent to a landfill. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency supports and encourages this type of “deconstruction” because it satisfies “green” and sustainable development objectives, specifically the “3 R’s” of resource conservation – reducing the quantity of landfill waste, reusing valuable resources, and recycling materials.

The measurable results of this effort include:

  • 100 tons of reusable material per week sold;
  • 1.8 million bricks sold and reused at a historic church, a light house on the Great Lakes, and multi-million dollar homes in six states;
  • Broken brick utilized as landscaping material;
  • Hard rock maple floor (milled in the 1800’s) –reused for hand-made banjos and fiddles which gives a very rich sound;
  • Oak posts reused by furniture manufacturers across the U.S.;
  • Unusable wood mulched instead of discarded; and,
  • 300 tons of steel, copper, aluminum, and brass recycled.

This project conserved building materials that could have gone to the landfill. Plus, 30 additional jobs were created.

Franklin College

Franklin College developed a pilot campus composting project. Yard and appropriate cafeteria food waste was collected and deposited into composting bins located on campus. Faculty members used the program as an experiment for case studies for their courses. They asked students to research the project and keep statistics and data to determine what combination of brown and green materials resulted in the fastest breakdown of materials and what produced the best nutrient rich compost. Compost harvested from the bins was used in landscaping around the campus grounds. This successful recycling/reuse project resulted in 50 tons of waste being converted and the College realized an annual cost savings of $6,550 from vendor fees and landscaping material purchases. The composting project is one part of Franklin College’s comprehensive commitment to “green the campus”. Efforts include energy saving lighting retro fits, green classrooms, native tree plantings, recycled material purchases and student/community educational programs.

Howard County Recycling District

Howard County Recycling District (HCRD) opened a full-scale, full-time recycling facility for the collection of tires, electronics, mercury, mercury-containing devices and debris, household hazardous waste and sharps in 2007. HCRD has received a tremendous increase in materials recycled and diverted from improper disposal, some items with an increase up to four times the amount collected before the implementation of the collection facility. The Howard County Recycling District also implemented a new environmental compliance program for clean-up and enforcement of illegal dumps, illegal burning and nuisance properties.

The Howard County Recycling District is partnered with Howard Regional Health System and local law enforcement agencies to implement drop-off collections for unwanted and expired medications.

In 2007, Howard County Recycling implemented a county-wide paper recycling program for all schools and municipal government offices collecting 52,089 pounds in 2007. This number jumped to 132,112 pounds in 2008.

Finally HCRD partners with the City of Kokomo to collect cooking oil for its biodiesel production facility. These programs in addition to HCRD's commitment to education and public outreach have allowed HCRD to receive a Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence.

Katie Beesley

Katie Besley was seven years old when she learned about recycling in school and decided that it was something that she should do. She started, as most of us do, with a recycling program for her home – even though the nearest recycling center was 20 miles away. After it took over the family’s garage, Katie’s parents decided to help her get a recycling program established in Medora, population 700.

The first step was to establish a recycling drop off bin for the town. This was accomplished by establishing partnerships with the Jackson County Solid Waste Management District to provide financing, the Town Board to provide a secure location for the placement of the bin, and for the Medora Lion’s Club to monitor the bin on Saturday mornings.

To ensure the success of the new recycling program, Katie, her parents, and her grandparents went door-to-door with flyers explaining the new program and what products would be accepted. Katie spent her Saturday mornings helping at the bin teaching residents what could be recycled.

Recycling in Medora has now expanded to include curbside recycling (with about 1/3 of the town’s households participating) as well as in classrooms and at sporting events in the Medora schools.

Katie had a vision and persistence. Along the way, she encountered many barriers. Her parents told her the recycling center was too far away – but she convinced them to recycle anyway. The school superintendent said he didn’t have any recycling bins – so she wrote to Rumpke and got them donated. Medora did not have any budgeted items for a recycling program – so she worked with local organizations and established partnerships to fund the program in services, in-kind services, and products donated.

Thanks to the tireless efforts of Katie and her family, the 700 residents of Medora have recycled more than 7, 000 pounds of fiber, and over 3,000 pounds of commingled product in the first four months of the recycling program.

Land Use Category

Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission

The City of Fort Wayne redeveloped a downtown brownfield site into a new ballpark stadium called Parkview Field for the Fort Wayne Tin Caps minor league baseball team. The brownfield site was an old underutilized property that was covered with a number of asphalt parking lots and substandard housing. It was also suspected to be contaminated by releases from underground storage tanks. The former paved parking lots were consolidated and now hold an 880-space parking garage. The Parkview Field Stadium whose first ball game was held on April 16, 2009, is valued at $30 million and has a total capacity of 8,000 to 9,000 including lawn seating.

City of Portage

Portage Lakefront Park and Riverwalk is an example of the Marquette Greenway vision for Indiana' Lake Michigan shoreline. The project recaptured more than 100 acres of Lake Michigan waterfront by converting it from an industrial brownfield to a public park with open spaces and a riverwalk.

A few of the project’s benefits to the community and the environment included:

  • National planning and collaboration between Indiana Department of Environmental Management, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and National Steel Corp allowed Portage to remediate four contaminated waste sites.
  • The Army Corps of Engineers funded Portage wastewater plant expansion, and removed the obsolete USS wastewater treatment plant and the pipes going over Burns Waterway.
  • Over 100 acres were acquired for the Public Park and recreational use.
  • US Steel agreed to relocate and expand its training division in a land swap deal with the City of Portage.
  • Construction of park improvements and access elements such as trails and the Riverwalk.

Town of Munster – Centennial Park

In 1968, The Town of Munster purchased and operated a 144-acre sanitary landfill. Once the landfill was closed, this site was reclaimed for recreational use and developed into Centennial Park. The park includes a golf course, clubhouse, entertainment stage, botanical gardens, and a lake. The Town used innovative and environmentally sensitive construction techniques for this park, allowing the site to qualify as a LEED Silver project.

One of the on-going byproducts of any landfill is the production of methane gas. The current methane is partially used by the park and partially disposed of by vent and burning. The Town of Munster is considering an extensive landfill gas cogeneration project and has begun working with a private partner to help fund equipment that would allow methane to be converted to energy. This energy would then power the entire park so that Centennial Park would be 100% electrically self-sufficient.

Outreach Category

Frankfort Wastewater Treatment Plant

The City of Frankfort Municipal Utilities Board implemented an innovative public outreach program – the “fat trapper”- to change public behavior and keep pollutants out of Prairie Creek. Waste containers for household greases were distributed to 90% of Frankfort households. The “fat trapper” program urged residents to stop sending household greases down the drain where they could damage wastewater systems and pollute the environment.

Frankfort’s “fat trapper” efforts have resulted in large cost savings terms of man hours spent cleaning and disposing of grease. The “fat trapper” has also prevented large amounts of household greases from entering our waterways. Efforts to inform the public and cause a change in the public’s behavior regarding greases should definitely be highly commended.

Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce

The Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce launched the Green Business Initiative in April 2008 to help promote member’s businesses who are proactively engaged in green business operations and practices.

In addition, the Green Business Initiative works to educate business members on implementation of green practices through their Web site and through green seminars focused on sustainable business practices that result in a healthier environment. The stringent membership application process ensures that consumers who may want to patronize these businesses feel confident that the owners are truly committed to a greener Central Indiana.

Indianapolis Green Congregations and Interfaith Alliance Indianapolis

For the past two years, the Task Force, along with the Interfaith Alliance of Indianapolis Care for Creation Committee has combined efforts to encourage faith communities to pursue green projects on their campuses.

These organizations have assembled an interfaith steering committee which represents nine area congregations, the Committee and several other organizations, is leading an effort in Central Indiana to encourage more sustainable living by congregation members. Activities during 2007-2008 included workshops and presentations to individual congregations on sustainability topics, creative events such as art and fashion shows using recycled materials, several film series on environmental topics, implementation of energy efficiency, habitat/gardening, recycling projects and a variety of other activities.

Sycamore Land Trust

Sycamore Land Trust's (SLT's) Environmental Education Program connects people with nature in southern Indiana. The program's hands-on science units--particularly those custom-designed for K-12 schoolchildren--build understanding of southern Indiana's natural heritage and of the earth's delicate balance.

Students engage entirely and creatively in natural surroundings with SLT's expert Environmental Educators. Students build skills in science, math, reading, and writing, as well as how to relate to others. During the 2007-2008 school year, the Program saw growth exceeding all goals. Over 3,200 learners from seven counties enjoyed hands-on, life-changing lessons. This represented 120% growth since the program began only three years earlier.

The program assisted teachers in meeting state standards, boosted academic performance, and promoted mental, physical, and emotional health in school children. Continuous growth in numbers and a variety of lessons promotes students learning and understanding the interconnected web of life. This understanding in turn benefits future generations and communities.