EPA Honors 48 Organizations, Individuals, for Environmental Contributions

EPA honors 48 individuals and organizations for their leadership and innovation in helping to reduce the health and environmental risks of global warming and in protecting the stratospheric ozone layer.

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) honored 48 individuals and organizations from around the world with Climate Protection and Stratospheric Ozone Protection Awards at an awards ceremony last night at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill. The group was singled out for their leadership and innovation in helping to reduce the health and environmental risks of global warming, and in protecting the stratospheric ozone layer, which protects us all from the skin cancer dangers of the sun''s ultraviolet radiation.

"Our Stratospheric Ozone and Climate Protection Awards show the global nature of this problem and the breadth of solutions being developed around the world," said EPA Administrator Christie Whitman. "We [honored] 48 winners that represent 12 different countries and six of the seven continents. They have helped show that effectively managing this environmental challenge will require help from everyone. That means that individuals, corporations, and governments from around the world must all take a close look at their behaviors that contribute to this problem."

The Stratospheric Ozone Protection Awards have been presented annually since1990, with 452 individuals and organizations from 37 countries recognized for their efforts to date. EPA established the Climate Protection Awards in 1998 and has so far recognized 68 individuals, companies and organizations from 12 countries. This year, EPA will award 28 individuals and companies with the Stratospheric Ozone Protection Awards and 20 individuals and companies with the Climate Protection Awards.

Robert Schults, president and CEO of Climate Protection Award winner Shaklee Corp., says his company "has a longstanding history of making the environment a top priority in its business practices," adding, "We are privileged to be recognized by the EPA for our leadership in the area of climate protection, and we encourage other companies around the world to take a second look when it comes to their own impact on the earth."

Saying that it was "no surprise" that Shaklee was chosen as one of this year''s winners, Caley Johnson, director of the EPA''s Climate Protection Awards noted that the company''s "comprehensive climate protection strategy is in perfect alignment with the EPA''s selection criteria, namely: originality and public purpose; leadership and corporate responsibility; global perspective and implication; and reduction of greenhouse-gas emissions."

Another Climate Protection Award winner, CONSOL Energy, was one of the first coal companies to drain methane from its mines to improve safety, and is an industry leader in producing commercial quality coalbed methane for sale. The company produces an average 123 million cubic feet of gas daily, from operations in southwestern Virginia, southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia.

In a joint venture, CONSOL Energy is building an 88-megawatt power plant in Virginia fueled by its coalbed methane. The company also plans to expand its gas operations to other Appalachian locations.

"This award demonstrates that commercial success in the energy business need not come at the expense of the environment," said J. Brett Harvey, president and CEO. "We are honored to receive this award, and pleased with the administrator''s continued support and encouragement of our coalbed methane commercialization efforts."

EPA looked outside of U.S. borders for winners. The DENSO Water Heater Design Team (DENSO, Tokyo Electric Power Co. and Central Research Institute of Electric Power Industry), located in Tokyo, was honored for its efforts in developing and marketing the world''s first mass-produced CO2 refrigerant, heat-pump water heater for households.

Compared to a combustion-type water heater, the DENSO design team''s water heater reduces the amount of CO2 emissions by approximately 50 percent due to its "innovative design and energy-saving features," EPA said in announcing the award.

"This has potential for a huge overall CO2 emissions reduction because hot water supply uses one-third of the total energy consumed by Japanese households," added a letter from EPA that was sent to the company.

Masaharu Sumikawa, president and CEO of Hitachi Ltd., Power and Industrial Systems, another Climate Protection Award winner, said his company was "extremely proud to receive this prestigious award from the EPA for the Hitachi PFC Abatement System," adding, "Hitachi has a long-standing tradition of being committed to the environment by actively promoting the development of efficient and affordable systems for solving global environmental problems."

Hitachi developed the Catalytic Decomposition System (SCDS) by combining air and water to effectively decompose PFCs produced during the semiconductor manufacturing process with greater than 99.9 percent efficiency. The SCDS produces less waste than any reclaim, combustion or chemical conversion methods currently available, according to Hitachi, and the catalyst is completely recycled in an environmentally friendly manner.

The awards presentation is part of the Fourth Annual Earth Technologies Forum, taking place March 25 - 27. The forum of global climate change and stratospheric ozone protection technologies and policies is sponsored by the International Climate Change Partnership and the Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy, in cooperation with EPA, the Department of Energy, the Agency for International Development, United Nations Development Programme, United Nations Environment Programme, Australian Greenhouse Office, Environment Canada, Industry Canada, Netherlands'' Reduction Plan for the Non-CO2 Greenhouse Gases, and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

For further technical information about EPA''s Climate Protection and Stratospheric Ozone Protection Awards, contact Caley Johnson of EPA''s Office of Atmospheric Programs at (202) 564-2319 (johnson.caley@epa.gov) or go to: www.epa.gov/cpd/body_awards.html (climate) or www.epa.gov/spdpublc/awards (ozone). For more information about this year''s Earth Technologies Forum, go to: www.earthforum.com.

The list of 2002 Climate Protection Award winners (unless otherwise noted, the companies are U.S.-based) includes:

  • Corporate and Governmental Awards: Air Products and Chemicals Inc., City of Portland, Oregon; C2D, US Army CECOM RD&E Center; CONSOL Energy; DuPont; Hitachi (Japan) and Hitachi America; New Jersey DEP/DSRT Office of Innovative Technology; Ontario Power Generation''s Energy Efficiency Program, Canada; Shaklee Corp.; Verizon Communications
  • Association, Partnership, and Team Awards: CO2 Hot Water Supply Unit Design Team, Japan; International SEMATECH''s PFC Emission Reduction Working Group; Land and Water Fund of the Rockies; Voluntary Aluminum Industrial Partnership for PFC Reductions
  • Individual Awards: Dr. Fabio R. Borri, STMicroelectronics, Italy; Dr. Luis Abdón Cifuentes, Pontifica Universidad Catolica de Chile; Yoshinobu Hayakawa, NEC Corp., Japan; Rev. Richard L. Killmer, National Council of the Churches of Christ; Robert L. Markle, U.S. Coast Guard; Robert T. Wickham, Delegate, UN International Maritime Organization.

2002 Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award winners are:

  • Corporate and Governmental Awards: C.O. Keddy Nursery, Canada; Diakin Industries, Japan; Dow AgroSciences Co.; Fetzer Vineyards; General Mills for the Recently Acquired Pillsbury Co.; Honeywell International; Kendall-Jackson Wine Estates; Raynor; USDA &endash; ARS, Water Management Research Laboratory; Yoder Brothers
  • Association and Team Awards: Japan''s Save the Ozone Network (JASON), Japan; Florida Telone Commercialization Team
  • Individual Awards: Sue Biniaz, Department of State; Dr. Iwona Rummel-Bulska, World Meteorological Organization, Switzerland; Jim Cochran, Swanton Berry Farm; Kert Davies, Greenpeace; Dr. Paul Fraser, Commonwealth Industrial Scientific Research Organisation, Australia; Marcos Gonzalez, Costada Norte Parque, Costa Rica; Nikolai Kopylov, All-Russian Research Institute for Fire Protection, Russia; James Frederick O''Bryon, Department of Defense (retired); John Okedi, National Environment Management Authority, Uganda; Nancy Reichman, Ph.D., University of Denver; Reva Rubenstein, EPA (retired); Darrel A. Staley, The Boeing Co.; Sue Stendebach, National Science Foundation; Patrick Széll, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, UK; Dr. A. Tcheknavorian-Asenbauer, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Austria; Howard L. Wesoky, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

by Sandy Smith (ssmith@penton.com)

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