August 14, 2013

KDHE Office of Communications, 785-296-0461

KDHE Recognizes Businesses for Pollution Prevention Efforts

TOPEKA, Kan. - The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) has announced the 2013 Pollution Prevention (P2) Award recipients. The announcement was made during an awards luncheon at the Kansas Environmental Conference, held Aug.13-15 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel Conference Center in Topeka.

John Mitchell, KDHE Division of Environment Director, presented award plaques to the following companies: Owens Corning Systems, LLC in Kansas City and SPX Cooling Technologies, Inc. in Olathe.

The Kansas Pollution Prevention Program promotes pollution prevention as an environmental ethic to achieve improvements in public health and environmental quality. The awards are presented to entities that have reduced or eliminated waste at the source, reduced air emissions or practiced energy and/or water conservation. Companies, organizations, schools and communities are able to apply for the Kansas P2 awards each year.

“We are happy to honor these companies with this year’s P2 awards for their success in planning and implementing a variety of waste reduction and conservation projects,” Mitchell said. “In addition to recognizing these companies for their environmental accomplishments, the P2 awards allow us to showcase specific efforts that other Kansas businesses can incorporate into their manufacturing processes.”

Owens Corning Systems, LLC, Kansas City, is a manufacturer of building products. The Kansas City company is being awarded for its efforts to reduce pollution and conserve energy and water. The OC Kansas City plant converted fiberglass wool manufacturing from a phenolic and formaldehyde binding process to a natural, starch-based process. The substitution eliminated or significantly reduced generation of multiple air pollutants. The pollutants reduced include ammonia (114 tons per year, 99.8 percent), formaldehyde (28 tons per year, 95 percent), methanol (15 tons per year, 99 percent) and phenol (22 tons per year, 99.9 percent). From 2010 to 2012, implemented energy conservations measures resulted in an annual savings of 22,200 mega-watt hours (MWh). Water conservation projects reduced water use by 73 percent over the same period, in addition to a 53 percent reduction from a 2008 project. These improvements reduced the environmental footprint of the Kansas City manufacturing plant, consistent with the sustainability strategy initiated by the company.

SPX Cooling Technologies, Inc., Olathe, is a cooling tower and air-cooled condenser manufacturer. SPX is being awarded for its efforts in reducing toxics, waste and air emissions and for energy conservation. SPX reduced lead use by redesigning their fan blades. The new blades, designed for manufacturing and assembly in the U.S., require less weight for balancing, as well as the ability to use HMG steel weights. Purchased amounts of lead were reduced by 35.3 percent, approximately 1,300 pounds per year. The purchase of a tie-rod decoiler enabled SPX to decrease their metal scrap from 35-50 percent to 5-6 percent ($75,000 per year). SPX also installed three new energy efficient boiler systems, saving an estimated 2,033 MMBTU ($16,000 per year) and a lighting replacement project resulted in an annual savings of 435,000 kilo-watt hours (kWh) ($33,000).

Congratulations to the 2013 P2 award recipients. Learn more about these projects and the Pollution Prevention Awards by visiting