Finding products that are safer for you, your employees, your family, and the environment should be easy. That’s why EPA developed the new Safer Choice label. Products with the Safer Choice label help consumers and commercial buyers identify products with safer chemical ingredients, without sacrificing quality or performance.
More than 2,000 products currently qualify to carry the Safer Choice label. You can find products for your home at retail stores, as well as products to use in facilities like schools, hotels, offices, and sports venues.
Participation in the Safer Choice program is voluntary. Companies that make products carrying the Safer Choice label have invested heavily in research and reformulation to ensure that their products meet the Safer Choice Standard. These companies are leaders in safer products and sustainability.
Products have to meet stringent criteria in order to earn the Safer Choice label. In addition to product ingredients, the program also considers product performance, pH, packaging and more to ensure that products with the label are safer for you and your family. Once a product meets the Safer Choice Standard, EPA conducts annual audits to ensure that they continue to do so.
You can search for products that meet the Safer Choice Standard here. If you’re a manufacturer who wants learn more about qualifying for the program and applying for certification, EPA has more information here.
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is now accepting nominations for the third annual Michigan Green Chemistry Governor’s Award. The awards, modeled on the Presidential Green Chemistry Awards program, honor industrial, academic, student, and non-profit efforts to green Michigan’s economy.
Past awardees were recognized for work to advance principles of green chemistry into chemical design, manufacture or use, or promotion activities that support or implement those technologies.
The awards are open to individuals, groups and organizations in Michigan, both nonprofit and for-profit, including academia, educators, nonprofit advocacy groups and industry.
To learn more about Michigan’s green chemistry program or obtain a nomination packet for the Governor’s award, go to www.michigan.gov/greenchemistry.
Entries must be sent by Aug. 5. Awards are presented during the 2011 Michigan Green Chemistry and Engineering Conference. This year’s conference: “Advancing Innovation for a Sustainable Future,” is scheduled Oct. 27 at the University of Michigan’s North Campus Research Complex in Ann Arbor.
For more information, call the DEQ Environmental Assistance Center at 800‑662-9278.
[The P2Rx Directors have offered to post occasional entries in regional blogs. Thanks to Paula Del Giudice from PPRC for the following.]
Just 16 years ago, Jay Hair, former Chief Executive Officer of the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) asked me to stand up before the plenary session of the annual meeting of NWF because I was holding my baby daughter, Katie—then a tender two months old. He pointed out to the audience that the reason why we were there—the reason why we should be working so hard on behalf of the environment—was for the future of our children.
Continue reading “Time to Update TSCA”
The presentations from the recent Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR)/Region 7 Pollution Prevention Roundtable conference are now available on the GLRPPR web site. Continue reading “Summer 2009 GLRPPR/Region 7 Conference Presentations Online”
According to the California Office of the Governor web site, on September 30, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed SB 375, “by Senator Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento), which builds on AB 32, California’s first-in-the-nation law to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, by adding the nation’s first law to control greenhouse gas emissions by curbing sprawl…In order to reach the greenhouse gas reduction goals set out in AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, Californians need to rethink how we design our communities. SB 375 does this by providing emissions-reduction goals around which regions can plan-integrating disjointed planning activities and providing incentives for local governments and developers to follow new conscientiously-planned growth patterns.” The legislation directs the California Air Resources Board to develop regional greenhouse gas emission reduction targets to be achieved from the automobile and light truck sectors for 2020 and 2035, and provides incentives for the creation of walkable, sustainable communities and the revitalization of existing communities. The Governor also signed SB 372, which “establishes the Strategic Growth Council and will appropriate $500,000 from Prop 84 to the Resources Agency to support the Council and its activities.” Read the full press release regarding this legislation here.
On September 29, the Governor also signed AB 1879 and SB 509 related to green chemistry. “AB 1879 establishes authority for the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to develop regulations that create a process for identifying and prioritizing chemicals of concern and to create methods for analyzing alternatives to existing hazardous chemicals. It also allows DTSC to take certain actions following an assessment that range from ‘no action’ to ‘restrictions or bans.’ The bill also establishes a Green Ribbon Science Panel made up of experts to provide advice on scientific matters, chemical policy recommendations and implementation strategies, as well as ensuring implementation efforts are based on a strong scientific foundation. Moreover, it expands the role of the Environmental Policy Council, made up of the heads of all California Environmental Protection Agency boards and departments, to oversee critical activities related to the implementation of the green chemistry program. SB 509 creates an online Toxics Information Clearinghouse, a web-based database, to increase consumer knowledge about the toxicity and hazards of thousands of chemicals used in California every day.” A Green Chemistry Initiative has been established to develop policy options for implementing a green chemistry program. The initiative’s goal is to evaluate the health risks of chemicals and possible alternatives in a systematic way, rather than on a case-by-case basis. Read the full press release here.
October is Energy Awareness Month, so we turn to a trusted source for information on industrial energy efficiency for the site of the month. The Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) leads national efforts to improve industrial energy efficiency and environmental performance. ITP is part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and contributes to its efforts by partnering with U.S. industry in a coordinated program of research and development, validation, and dissemination of energy efficiency technologies and operating practices. In the Industrial Technology R&D section of the site, learn more about cost-shared support to R&D partnerships addressing key energy intensive industries (aluminum, chemical, forest products, glass, metal casting, mining, petroleum refining and steel) which account for a full 75% of industrial energy consumption and represent the largest opportunity to increase energy efficiency in the industrial sector. The Crosscutting Technologies section of the site deals with key technologies widely used in the energy intensive industries and improving efficiency in these processes. The Best Practices section includes information on plant assessments (such as the Save Energy Now program), software tools, training and publications.
Note that applications are currently being accepted for the Save Energy Now Assessments. Only manufacturing facilities in the United States and territories are eligible for a Save Energy Now energy assessment. To be considered for an assessment, applicants must complete and submit the online application form. All assessments will be completed by December 31, 2008. Applications will be selected based on overall energy consumption.
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) on Sept. 15, 2008 released its strategy to promote research, development, and commercialization of innovative and practical technologies that prevent pollution through cleaner, cheaper, smarter chemistry. The strategy, released in the report “Advancing Green Chemistry: An Action Plan for Michigan Green Chemistry Research, Development and Education” identifies key steps for the success of green chemistry in Michigan.
In October 2006, Governor Jennifer M. Granholm issued Executive Directive No. 2007-6, “Promotion of Green Chemistry for Sustainable Economic Development and Protection of Public Health,” that established state policy encouraging the use of safer, less toxic, or non-toxic chemical alternatives to hazardous substances and the research, development, and implementation of Green Chemistry in Michigan.
The DEQ has been given primary responsibility to implement the Green Chemistry Executive Directive, including establishing a Michigan Green Chemistry Program and convening a Michigan Green Chemistry Roundtable. The Roundtable, which is comprised of experts representing business, academia, environmental interest groups, and the public, had significant input into the development of the Action Plan and will be participating in the implementation of the Michigan Green Chemistry Program.
Source: Michigan DEQ, 9/15/08.
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) recently announced that it will host a workshop on the European Union’s Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical Substances (REACH). REACH is a recently adopted overhaul of the chemicals management system in the EU. REACH has important implications for United States firms exporting to EU member states and the rules became effective on June 1, 2007. The training session will take place on September 26, 2007 at DEC headquarters in Albany, NY.
An earlier post described a similar workshop that will be held in Lansing, MI on September 27.
For more upcoming events, check the GLRPPR online calendar and Sector Resources.
New York State is seeking proposals to help establish a new pollution prevention institute that will promote innovative and cost effective methods for reducing or eliminating the use of toxic substances in manufacturing and other processes, Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Pete Grannis announced recently. DEC is encouraging public or private universities, non-profit institutions, or a consortium of such organizations to submit proposals to develop and implement this pioneering project, first initiated by Governor Eliot Spitzer as part of his 2007-08 Executive Budget. When established, the institute will provide an unparalleled center for technology evaluation and development, as well as technology transfer, training, assistance and workforce development. The institute’s objective is to help make businesses more competitive by enabling them to be more efficient. The institute will foster partnerships among businesses, universities, state and local governments, health and environmental organizations to stimulate the research and development of cutting-edge environmental technologies that will focus on sustainability and toxic use reduction over the course of the product life cycle. Proposals are due by December 5, 2007.
For more information, see the RFP online at http://www.dec.ny.gov/public/37277.html. For more funding opportunities, be sure to check the GLRPPR Funding Opportunities page regularly.
GLRPPR is pleased to announce the availability of a new compendium of resources on Pharmaceutical & Personal Care Product (PPCP) Wastes & Impacts. This compendium focuses on the environmental impacts of pharmaceutical and personal care product residues in the environment, as well as on how to properly dispose of such products to avoid environmental contamination. As with any Sector Resource, expert contact information and lists of relevant events and funding opportunities are provided, as well as relevant Help Desk questions and answers. An RSS feed is available. This sector resource includes a link to the recently released Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant guide Disposal of Unwanted Medicines: A Resource for Action in Your Community, which also happens to be the GLRPPR Site of the Month for September 2007.
This new Sector Resource is a work in progress, so subscribe to the RSS feed or check the web site frequently for updates. If you have suggestions for resources to include, please email them to Joy Scrogum.