2017 Federal Green Challenge Award Winners in the Great Lakes Region
Recognition is an important part of the Federal Green Challenge. Awards were given at the regional level in the categories of Waste, Energy, Purchasing, Innovation, Electronics, Transportation and Leadership.
In the Great Lakes region, the 2017 award winners are the Department of Veterans Affairs Minneapolis Health Care System, the Environmental Protection Agency National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory, the Department of Energy Argonne National Lab, and the Department of Homeland Security U.S. Customs and Border Protection Detroit Field Office. Below are descriptions of what the awardees achieved and ways they achieved reductions.
Department of Veterans Affairs, Minneapolis Health Care System, Minneapolis, MN
The sustainability and operating room green team members led an effort to reduce waste in the facility’s operating room by reducing hazardous waste by 99 percent in the operating rooms and by 20 percent facility-wide. The work includes the production of ‘Greening the Operating Room’ to document the process of reducing waste, increasing staff engagement, and improving energy and water efficiency in operating rooms.
Innovation, Waste, and Transportation
Department of Energy, Argonne National Lab, Lemont, IL
Through its Site Sustainability Program, Argonne National Laboratory implemented an innovative project to reuse industrial wastewater to clean out wastewater tanks and lines in the lab’s treatment plant, saving more than three million gallons of potable water. Argonne National Laboratory increased its municipal solid waste recycling rate by over 800 percent due to stepped up efforts by the lab’s Clean Sweep program. They also increased teleworking miles by 43 percent by better integrating remote working tools and video conferencing.
Environmental Protection Agency, National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory, Ann Arbor, MI
The National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory decreased the amount of printing and copier paper purchased by 66 percent by increasing access to Wi-Fi, adding electronic displays to conference rooms, and using electronic document tools.
Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Customs and Border Protection Detroit Field Office, Detroit, Michigan
The Customs and Border Protection’s Detroit Field Office increased the amount of used electronics it sent to a third-party certified electronics recycler by 418% by cleaning out excess electronic material from office space.