EPA recognizes four Colorado companies for distinguished efforts to prevent pollution
DENVER –– Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 8 recognized four Colorado companies as winners of the 2021 Regional Pollution Prevention (P2) Award Program. This year’s awardees—Leprino Foods Company, Management and Engineering Services LLC, PCs for People and Taco Star—have all shown a commitment to pollution prevention by reducing, eliminating or preventing pollution at its source prior to recycling, treatment or disposal.
“I’m happy to recognize the leadership and accomplishments of businesses that are actively working to prevent pollution and make a positive impact in their communities,” said EPA Regional Administrator KC Becker. “The work done by this year’s awardees supports EPA’s goals of reducing pollution and addressing climate change.”
Leprino Foods Company in Fort Morgan, Colorado is a dairy ingredients manufacturer that produces mozzarella cheese, milk proteins and lactose. To reduce its greenhouse gas and water footprint, Leprino installed modern equipment and implemented cleaning system and production process improvements to minimize waste brine and process cleaning water generation. The improvements reduced waste hauling and water, electrical and gas consumption.
“The company views pollution prevention efforts as a critical factor in manufacturing products for the overall benefit of the consumer and play an important part in meeting climate action commitments,” said Leprino Foods Fort Morgan Plant Manager David Merriam. “As water scarcity concerns escalate in the local watershed, and throughout the country, every effort we can make to reduce water demand in our processes helps to lessen the strain on water supplies. Reductions in electrical, gas and transportation help to minimize air quality impacts across the region and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Future projects planned for this coming year include upgrading LED lighting, upgrading internal water reuse projects, as well as optimizing the ammonia system efficiency.”
Management and Engineering Services, LLC in Longmont is a small business that provides specialized environmental and business planning support solutions to government agencies and private companies operating on government lands. Over the past three years, Management and Engineering Services implemented water reduction equipment and techniques, instituted a composting program, eliminated disposable food service ware and paper towels, purchased 100% renewable energy, as well as Renewable Energy Certificates for all purchased electricity, and provided employee bicycles as part of its bike-to-work promotion.
PCs for People in Denver, Colorado provides opportunities for greater Denver’s individuals and families with low income to benefit from the life-changing impacts of computer and internet access. PCs for People Denver diverts over a million pounds of electronic waste from Colorado landfills every year and repurposes the waste to support digital inclusion. In the last three years, PCs for People Colorado has refurbished over 24,814 computers and responsibly recycled over 2 million pounds of electronics, providing second life to these devices that may have otherwise ended up in a landfill. Not only do they prevent hazardous waste from entering the waste stream, but they also reduce the demand for manufacturing new computers.
“We are humbled and honored to receive this award in recognition of our positive environmental impact,” said PCs for People Denver Executive Director Alejandro Dopico. “Every time a business recycles their technology with us, we feel excited about the opportunity to give it a second life as a valuable device for a family while also keeping it out of a landfill. We are grateful to the many partners who make our work possible, from businesses to community organizations to our customers.”
Taco Star in Longmont, Colorado is a family-owned Mexican restaurant. By working with Longmont’s Sustainable Business Program, Efficiency Works, and Boulder County Partners for a Clean Environment, Taco Star updated older compact fluorescent interior and exterior lighting to new LED fixtures, replaced less efficient hand sink aerators with low-flow aerators, and replaced 20-year-old refrigeration equipment with new ENERGY STAR® units.
Combined, the 2021 Award Winners reduced:
Approximately 3,900,000 gallons of water use.
Business costs by approximately $213,409.
Approximately 5,570 metric tons of Carbon Dioxide Equivalent (MTCO2e).
P2, as defined in the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990, is any practice that reduces environmental releases of hazardous substances, pollutants or contaminants prior to entering a waste stream for recycling, treatment or disposal. P2 conserves natural resources, including water and energy, by focusing industry, government and public attention on reducing pollution through the implementation of cost-effective changes in production, operation and the use of raw materials. EPA’s P2 program is voluntary and encourages stakeholders to seek innovative ways to prevent pollution from entering waste streams through a competitive grant process and the provision of technical assistance to businesses.
The EPA Region 8 Pollution Prevention Award program is an annual, voluntary and non-monetary award program. Those interested in applying or nominating an organization to be considered for an award will have an opportunity to apply in the fall of 2022 at the R8 EPA P2 Award Program Website: https://www.epa.gov/co/forms/2021-epa-region-8-pollution-prevention-p2-award-program
Additionally, EPA’s Pollution Prevention (P2) Grant Request for Application is open for solicitation. If you are an eligible organization and would like to apply for a P2 Grant, please visit https://www.epa.gov/p2