Webinar: The Use & Benefit of STAR Certification

Tue, Nov 1, 2016 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM CDT
Register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7317289842583425283

Almost 60 communities across the U.S. have been certified using the STAR Community Rating System, which evaluates environmental, economic, and social sustainability. But certification is only the first step towards creating more sustainable communities. The staff leads for STAR certification from Iowa City, Evanston, and Dubuque will share how they approached the certification results and began the transition to implementable results. The panel discussion will give audience members a deeper understanding of the use and benefit of sustainability certification, the relationship between sustainability performance metrics and community planning and policy making, and how to engage community leaders and residents in creating a sustainable community.

EPA Webinar – Toolkit of Available EPA Green Infrastructure Modeling Software

Wed, Oct 26, 2016 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM CDT
Register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/3640117239990097666

This webinar will present a toolkit consisting of five EPA green infrastructure models and tools, along with communication material. This toolkit can be used as a teaching and quick reference resource for use by planners and developers when making green infrastructure implementation decisions. It can also be used for low impact development design competitions. Models and tools included: Green Infrastructure Wizard (GIWiz), Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST), Visualizing Ecosystem Land Management Assessments (VELMA) Model, Storm Water Management Model (SWMM), and the National Stormwater Calculator (SWC).

Great Lakes festival crowd goes batty over bats

Read the full story at Great Lakes Echo.

Bat festivals are cropping up across the Great Lakes region, and bat enthusiasts hope to eventually see one in every state.

This Saturday, the U.S. Forest Service, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Organization for Bat Conservation are putting on one of the biggest bat festivals in the region: The Wisconsin Bat Festival.

Call for Proposals: Smart and Sustainable Campuses Conference 2017

With a theme of Renew, Restore, Regenerate, interested parties are invited to submit proposals for the 2017 Smart and Sustainable Campuses Conference, March 26-28, 2017, in College Park, Maryland. Sessions are 50- and 80-minutes in length and alternative presentations styles are supported. Proposals are due on Oct. 30.

Webinar: Green Chemistry, Safer Choices

Wed, Oct 12, 2016 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM CDT
Register at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5298217056836195586

Join Spartan Chemical Company, Inc., The University of Toledo, Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the United States Environmental Protection Agency to learn about the increasing demand for green chemistry and safer products.

Hear Spartan Chemical discuss their decision to develop green products in partnership with EPA’s Safer Choice Program and the School of Green Chemistry and Engineering at The University of Toledo describe their educational program offerings.

During the presentation, you will learn:

  • Industry’s perspective on the benefits and challenges of formulating greener products;
  • Government programs that help incentivize companies to develop green products;
  • Addressing the increasing consumer demand for safer products;
  • How academia is filling the need for current and the growing demand for green chemistry and engineering students; and
  • How state voluntary programs recognize facilities for undertaking these challenges.

Attendees may participate virtually through the live webinar or in person at the broadcast site (Nitschke Hall 1027 at the University of Toledo — 1610 Westwoood Ave, Toledo, OH 43606).

ISTC Sustainability Seminar series – Fall 2016: Contaminants in the Environment

The ISTC Sustainability Seminar Series continues this fall with the theme “Contaminants in the Environment.” The schedule of seminar speakers is below. To be added to the seminar and events email list or to receive links to the live broadcasts of the seminars, please contact Beth Meschewski at elm2@illinois.edu.

All seminars will be held at ISTC (1 E. Hazelwood Dr. in Champaign) in the SJW conference room. The series is an opportunity to share information and discussion with peers in a relaxed, informal environment. Please feel free to bring a lunch. Seminars usually last about an hour and questions are welcome. The seminars will be broadcast live and will also be recorded and archived on the ISTC website: www.istc.illinois.edu.

To support our sustainability efforts, please bring along your own reusable beverage container (mug, cup, water bottle, etc…), if you are able to.

September Seminars

September 8, 2016  12 – 1 pm CDT at ISTC

Lessons Learned from Two Decades of Research on Emerging Contaminants
Presented by Diana S. Aga – Henry Woodburn Professor of Chemistry, Chemistry Department, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, Buffalo, NY 14260

In the last twenty years, thousands of research papers covering different aspects of emerging contaminants have been published, ranging from environmental occurrence to treatment and ecological effects. Emerging contaminants are environmental pollutants that have been investigated widely only in the last 20 years, and include man-made and naturally occurring chemicals such as pharmaceuticals and personal care products and their metabolites, illicit drugs, engineered nanomaterials, and antibiotic resistance genes. The advancement in our knowledge on emerging contaminants has been the result of the appearance of highly sensitive and powerful analytical instrumentation that rapidly developed, allowing trace quantification and identification of unknown contaminants in complex environmental matrices. High efficiency chromatographic separations coupled to high-resolution mass spectrometers have become commonplace in environmental laboratories and the pillars of environmental research, increasing our understanding and awareness of the presence of emerging contaminants in the environment, their transformation and fate, and the complex ecological consequences that they pose on exposed biological systems. In this presentation an overview on key research milestones in the area of emerging contaminants, focusing on pharmaceuticals and personal care products and endocrine disrupting compounds, and highlighting some of our own research, will be presented to identify knowledge gaps and future needs where the analytical scientists and environmental engineers can contribute to advance this important area of research and provide solutions to problems related to the impacts of emerging contaminants in the environment.

This webinar will be broadcast live and also archived on ISTC’s website, www.istc.illinois.edu, for later viewing. If you cannot attend the event at ISTC, you may view the webinar live by registering at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6419324193220665091.  ISTC is a part of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

September 22, 2016  12 – 1 pm CDT at ISTC

Fluorescence spectroscopy as a complementary technique for characterization of organic matter associated with produced waters from oil extraction
Presented by John Scott – Senior Analytical Chemist, Illinois Sustainable Technology Center, Prairie Research Institute, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Unconventional sources of oil and gas are becoming increasingly important in meeting US energy demands. Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing of shales in locations such as Pennsylvania are commonplace in response to the need for domestically sourced energy. Although development of these new technologies has increased the domestic production of gas and oil, there have been many concerns relating to contamination of surface water, groundwater and drinking water supplies.

Fluorescence excitation-emission spectroscopy is a rapid and inexpensive technique that could be utilized as a screening tool for water samples suspected of contamination by hydraulic fracturing operations. In conjunction with computational analysis of the fluorescence data using techniques such as parallel factor analysis (PARAFAC), questions such as “Has there been contamination caused by fracking” can be answered rapidly and inexpensively.

Chemical additives used in fracturing fluids and chemical contaminates in produced waters, such as polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), could be used as a surrogate to determine if contamination of surface waters, groundwaters, and drinking waters was due to hydraulic fracturing operations in nearby locations. Methods developed in this project could aid in water quality monitoring and help guide decisions regarding further testing of water samples suspected of contamination.

This webinar will be broadcast live and also archived on ISTC’s website, www.istc.illinois.edu, for later viewing. If you cannot attend the event at ISTC, you may view the webinar live by registering at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1595124567444122626.  ISTC is a part of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Save these dates for other seminars in the series. Contact Beth Meschewski at elm2@illinois.edu to receive links to the live broadcasts of these talks.

  • October 13: Alister Innes – Green Chemistry Coordinator at the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA)
  • November 10: Scott Spak – Assistant Professor of Urban & Regional Planning and Civil & Environmental Engineering at the University of Iowa

U.S. EPA Region 1 offers webinar series on climate resilience for small business

U.S. EPA Region 1 is conducting a webinar series on climate change resilience for small businesses, especially those located in or near flood-prone areas that use hazardous chemicals.  This training takes a “source reduction first” approach to the training for these businesses. Participants will learn how to:

  • Assess pollution prevention/source reduction options
  • Use online maps to learn if they are in or near flood-prone areas
  • Comply with hazardous waste management regulations
  • Prepare a business continuity plan
  • Find out about how they can obtain energy audits and funding from the Massachusetts Small and Midsize Business Direct Install Program

Webinar 1: The Resilient Business: Strategies for Pollution Prevention & Financing Energy Efficiency

  • Session 1: Wednesday August 31, 10:00 a.m.-11:30 a.m. EDT – Register
  • Session 2: Wednesday, September 14, 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. EDT – Register

Webinar 2: The Resilient Business: Strategies for Pollution Prevention & Reducing Flood Risk

  • Session 1: Wed. Sept. 21, 1:00-2:30 p.m. EDTRegister
  • Session 2: Wed. Sept. 28, 11:00 a.m-12:30 p.m. EDT Register

For more information about the webinar series, contact: Roy Crystal, 617-918-1745, Crystal.Roy@epa.gov.