The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) in partnership with Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions has created the “Putting Green to Work” lunches which will feature speakers from businesses that have excelled at energy conservation and other sustainable practices.
The first green-bag lunch will be held from 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., June 28 at ADEQ, 5301 Northshore Drive, North Little Rock. The first featured business will be Dassault Falcon Jet.
The series, an effort of the department’s Business Assistance Program, is an outgrowth of the agency’s annual Environmental Stewardship Award. Dubbed, the ENVY award, the honor is given annually to individuals, businesses or groups for exceptional efforts to protect or enhance the environment. Dassault Falcon Jet was the first recipient of the award in October 2005 for its efforts to reduce waste and prevent pollution at its Little Rock manufacturing facility.
“Industry is too often brushed with the label of being anti-environment,” ADEQ Director Teresa Marks said. “But when you look at the environmental programs being adopted by industry across our state, you must recognize that’s not true.”
“There’s a lot that can be accomplished when you have a core group of environmentally conscious employees dedicated to decreasing the environmental footprint of their organization as much as reasonably possible,” Marks said. “With the support of management, it’s amazing the results that can take place. It really can be good for the bottom line.”
Dassault Falcon Jet, which was an ENVY finalist this year, estimated its “Eco-design” sustainability program saved the company $250,000 to $300,000 annually. The program involved the installation of new, more energy-efficient equipment, lighting, and windows at the plant, as well as reduction or elimination of toxic materials used in aircraft manufacturing.
The company was a finalist for the award again in 2010. The airplane manufacturer’s efforts between 2007 and 2009 resulted in a 250 percent decrease in the volume of drummed hazardous waste produced and a four-ton reduction in hazardous air pollutants.
Admission is free, but registration is required for the event, as seating is limited. Attendees bring their own lunch. To register, contact Audree Miller at (501) 682-0015 or email email@example.com by 4 p.m., June 25.
Arkansas Manufacturing Solutions was established in 1995 as a program of the Arkansas Science & Technology Authority and an affiliate of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Manufacturing Extension Partnership to provide manufacturing extension services to Arkansas manufacturers. More information can be found online at http://www.mfgsolutions.org/index.asp.
ADEQ’s Business Assistance Program assists businesses with permitting and compliance issues as well as pollution prevention efforts, small business loans and more. For more information, visit http://adeqweb/poa/sba/businessasst.htm.