P2 Project Award: Natural Polymer International Corporation (Plano, TX)
The Natural Polymer International Corp. (NPIC) received recommendations from the Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center (TMAC) to:
- Reduce energy consumption with compressor line upgrades
- Reduce natural gas and MTCO2e emissions in their drying room operations
- Reduce kWh electricity for their injection molding machines
As a result of implementing these recommendations, NPIC reduced their energy use by 122,000 kWh and 26.6 MTCO2e.
kWh = kilowatt hours
MTCO2e = metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent
Ken Zarker Memorial P2 Champion Award: Varun Dixit
Varun Dixit is passionate about combating climate change and preserving the planet for future generations. Concerned that American hospitals produce about six million tons of waste every year, of which 30% is generated by hospital operating rooms (ORs), he envisioned and instituted what became a highly successful OR recycling program. Leveraging the success, he has also been highly successful at converting the 3 campuses of Henrico Doctors' Hospital from traditional "high flow" anesthesia to "low flow" anesthesia which reduces gas emissions. Varun also conducted extensive educational sessions to teach the North American Partners in Anesthesia (NAPA) anesthesia clinicians why low flow anesthesia technique was better for the planet and their patients, and how to safely adopt low flow anesthesia in their practices.
Alicia Wind has been working at Enviro-Stewards for 13 years and has been a key participant in dozens of P2 projects including toxics reduction, water and energy conservation, food loss and waste prevention, and circular economy projects. Her P2 work has won multiple national awards. Internationally, Alicia has worked on food loss prevention case stuidies for the North American Centre for Environmental Cooperation, completed P2 work for facilities across the USA, and assisted many many facilities across Canada.
Alicia is currently training dozens of industries in P2 skills through the Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium's green skills training program. This course includes both in plant instruction and practical in-plant assignments that students complete to develop and hone their skills. The course culminates with the students presenting to their own management team on the measures they have identified, implemented, and verified.
Amelia Wagner started at the Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) as part of her capstone project for her Undergraduate in Public Health. She focused mainly on laboratory testing for industrial cleaning applications to help companies find safer alternatives. She was such an amazing student that TURI hired her on full-time, and she is finishing her master's degree. Amelia is now working actively on projects to not only assist Massachusetts companies, but she is also assisting with Washington and Kansas P2 grant groups to help companies in those locations find safer alternatives to switch for their application.
Ramaswamy Nagarajan, Distinguished University Professor at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, has been an early and prolific teacher and adopter of pollution prevention and toxics use reduction strategies. He has been successful leading research teams to discover and evaluate safer alternatives to toxic chemicals for a wide variety of applications including flame retardants used in wire and cable products, textile coatings, resins and medical device assays.