The latest P2 Pathways column focuses on California’s product stewardship efforts, including a proposed Safer Consumer Products Regulation. Visit http://www.greenbiz.com/business/engage/enterprise-blogs/p2-pathways to see the P2 Pathways archive.
For those of us in the U.S., the deadline (April 15) approaches to submit taxes for 2010. Whether you’re still scrambling to fill our your forms, or feeling the satisfaction of having turned everything in on time, take a minute to read this informative post on Earth911‘s web site called Green Tax Credits You’re Missing. Author Alexis Petru provides information on incentives for home energy efficiency, renewable energy systems, credits for purchasing greener vehicles, and deductions you can take for donating to your favorite charitable organization or non-profit. Even if these incentives don’t apply to you for this round of taxes, consider what’s available as warmer weather approaches and you begin planning home improvement projects. You might be able to take advantage of incentives next year at tax time and make your choices “greener” in more ways than one.
Over on the Sustainable Electronics Initiative (SEI) blog, Aida Williams provides an update on three new state e-waste laws that have recently passed in Vermont, South Carolina and New York.
The SEI has also produced a new resource comparing and contrasting e-waste laws, the products covered within the laws, whether disposal bans are involved, etc. Check it out online or download the chart in PDF format.
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”
Today we continue to highlight Indiana P2 programs as the GLRPPR/Region 7 conference begins in Indianapolis. Modeled upon the now closed U.S. EPA National Environmental Performance Track Program, IDEM’s Environmental Stewardship Program (ESP) is a voluntary program that rewards regulated entities for outstanding environmental performance with regulatory flexibility, public recognition and networking opportunities. Participants use environmental management systems (EMS) to achieve their environmental goals.
Any regulated entity in Indiana may participate in ESP regardless of type, size, or complexity. The program website elaborates upon the eligibility requirements. Participant benefits include, among other things, expedited and flexible permits, reduced reporting frequency, reduced recordkeeping and reporting, a press release, use of the program logo, and opportunities for networking. A complete list of incentives is available on the program web site.
According to the program website, applications for ESP are accepted twice a year, from April 1–May 31 and September 1–October 31. See the application process web page or contact the Indiana Department of Environmental Management at (800) 988-7901 for more information.
Recently Indiana became the 19th state in the U.S. to enact electronic waste regulations with the signing of HB 1589. The group of states with such regulations also includes Michigan, Minnesota and Illinois in the Great Lakes region. According to the Electronics Take Back Coalition, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and New York will be considering e-waste legislation in 2009. At the local level, New York City also has electronic waste regulations. At the federal level, H.R. 1580, the Electronic Waste Research and Development Act, has been voted upon by the U.S. House of Representatives and been received by the Senate.
Given this trend, it seems appropriate to launch a resource collection on the Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable (GLRPPR) site focused specifically on e-waste issues. The GLRPPR Electronic Waste Sector Resource will include links to relevant legislation, news, events, funding opportunities, and contacts. This resource list is under development, so if you are aware of resources for e-waste programs in your state, please feel free to send links to Joy Scrogum for potential inclusion in this new resource list. An RSS feed is available for the Electronic Waste Sector Resource so you can be aware of new resources as they are added.
GLRPPR is a member of the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange (P2Rx) a national network of pollution prevention information centers. Another P2Rx center, the Western Sustainability Pollution Prevention Network (WSPPN) has also developed a P2Rx Topic Hub on Electronic Waste. This is linked to within the new Sector Resource on the GLRPPR site and is also available on the main GLRPPR Topic Hub page.
[Post author: Bob Iverson]
I am posting this article on behalf of Deb Jacobson, Director of the Printers National Environmental Assistance Center.
Friends and Colleagues,
I am sending this message on behalf of the individuals involved with the EPA Compliance Assistance Centers. http://www.epa.gov/compliance/assistance/centers/index.html
It is our understanding that EPA has cut all funding to the National Compliance Assistance Centers in the 2009 budget. We are currently in communication with EPA to encourage them to reconsider this plan. We have requested that EPA restore supporting funds in the 2010 budget and beyond. Without supporting funds the Centers will no longer be maintained and the resources will quickly become obsolete and out of date. In addition, you will no longer have quick and easy access to the industry technical experts.
Since 1995 the Centers have served as a valuable resource to the assistance provider community as well as the industry representatives themselves. The Centers represent seventeen industrial sectors that many of you serve. We are seeking your support and encourage you to contact EPA to express your concerns about the loss of this resource. Contact:
Ms. Lisa Jackson
Lisa Lund, Director
EPA Office of Compliance
Dave Hindin, Acting Deputy Director
EPA Office of Compliance
CAC Program Coordinator
EPA office of Compliance
Ariel Rios Building
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20460
I have a sample letter to Ms. Jackson if you would like a copy. Should you need any additional details or information you can contact me or any of the Center directors see http://www.assistancecenters.net/about/contact.cfm Note, I am now the primary contact for the Printers’ National Environmental Assistance Center.
On October 6, 2008, Governor Jennifer Granholm of Michigan signed a bipartisan renewable energy package that will reportedly “create jobs, diversify Michigan’s economy, and save customers money on their electric bills by ensuring that the bulk of Michigan’s future energy needs are produced from renewable energy resources and energy efficiency savings.”
The three-bill package includes a renewable portfolio standard (RPS) that mandates 10 percent of the state’s energy come from renewable sources by 2015, regulatory reform that protects Michigan ratepayers and allows utility companies to build new electricity generation in Michigan, and a requirement that utilities meet an additional 5.5 percent of Michigan’s annual electricity demands through energy efficiency by 2015. The package also includes an income tax credit to offset a portion of ratepayers’ investments in renewable energy for Michigan and a “net metering” law that allows customers to sell renewable electricity they produce at their homes or businesses to their utility companies.
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.
On September 17, 2008, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich announced legislation requiring electronics manufacturers to collect and recycle or reuse electronics products. At no charge to consumers, the law authorizes the use of a combination of incentives and mandates to reduce the ever-increasing amount of electronic waste – televisions, printers, computer monitors, computers, laptops, printers, fax machines and MP3 players – and their toxic substances, such as lead, cadmium, copper, flame retardants, and phosphorus, from being disposed in Illinois landfills. It also gives manufacturers flexibility in the strategies they use to meet their goals, such as partnering with retailers and local governments to sponsor collections. Manufacturers, recyclers, refurbishers and collectors must also register annually with the Illinois EPA. Effective January 1, 2012, landfills would be prohibited from knowingly accepting any of the covered electronic devices for disposal. SB 2313 is effective immediately.
For further information on SB 2313, as well as a link to the resulting Public Act (095-0959; the Electronic Products Recycling and Reuse Act), see the Illinois General Assembly web site.