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Sustainable research, operations and community
July 2015 (Vol.1, No. 3)
In this issue...
At PNNL, we believe that our triple-bottom-line approach to managing our sustainability performance—including the environmental, social, and economic pillars—makes us better stewards by helping us think holistically about the impact of our work, while focusing on what is most important to our stakeholders. In this way, we foster the long-term success of the organization.
Learn how PNNL plans to achieve the environmental goals set by our DOE customer and our progress to date in the FY2015 Site Sustainability Plan.
Bicycle Friendly Business
PNNL is a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business which recognizes efforts to encourage bicycling among staff members, for wellness as well as environmental benefits.
Sustainability award earned
The Association of Washington Businesses (AWB) recognized PNNL with the "Environmental Excellence Award." The PNNL award is for "Sustainable Communities & Green Buildings." This award celebrates PNNL's creativity with incorporating environmental sustainability into their business.
PNNL joined three other companies ranging from a world-class national laboratory to a printing company and a top business leader to former member of Congress, in achieving this honor. The award winners were presented their statue at the annual meeting in Spokane.
The Sustainability Pay$ Pollution Prevention (P2) Programs awarded nearly $55,000 for project proposals with the best return on investment potential and to those demonstrating a clear and measurable impact on PNNL's Triple Bottom Line performance.
The Sustainability Pay$ Program funds staff-generated projects that bring innovative ways to improve sustainability at PNNL, particularly in the areas of energy and water consumption, pollution prevention and material purchasing.
The Voluntary Protection Program (VPP) inaugural Student Roadshow started in 2011. The Roadshow embodies a cross-functional approach to introducing and engaging students with PNNL's culture of safety and operational excellence. Since its inception, thousands of students have participated in addition to hundreds of subject matter experts from across PNNL. This summer's Roadshow covers a wide range of topics, including sustainability and wellness, chemical and biological hazards, distracted driving, electrical safety, security and emergency preparedness.
This event is a great opportunity for interns to talk with subject matter experts, safety and health representatives, PNNL volunteers, and fellow interns in a relaxed, informal setting to understand how these areas play a large part in their work.
More than 110 PNNL staffers from three locations participated in a national challenge sponsored by the Cascade Bicycle Club during May's National Bike Month. PNNL cyclists from Richland, Seattle and Sequim rode a whopping 20,160 miles in May. This includes all miles ridden, whether for fun or commuting to and from work. This is far and above our performance last year—almost double in fact.
Congratulations to team Goatheads led by Jason Pope, Facilities & Operations. The Goatheads placed a fantastic 15th place out of more than 1,800 teams in the Federal League of the annual challenge. The national ranking was based on average number of trips.
And a shout out to Rockets team that placed 23rd and actually outpaced the Goatheads in terms of commutes and total miles. The Daytrippers team also had a good showing, placing 51st. Individually, Tamas Varga, EMSL, led the pack, logging 70 trips in 31 days.
Riders in the Tri-Cities arrived at the Richland campus on National Bike to Work Day (May 15), taking a parade lap, complete with a security escort, followed by prize give-aways and refreshments.
Energy reduction challenge sparks good stewardship
Staff took hundreds of actions to reduce energy use and operating costs on PNNL's main campus during the "Rock the Watt!" challenge this winter. Staff made decisions to choose task lighting in favor of overhead lighting; installed smart power strips in workstations and set our computers to go to sleep. Some staff were even inspired to take home personal fridges or give up personal printers. And, with the assistance of PNNL's Facilities and Operations staff, numerous service requests were filled to install lighting sensors, seal exterior doors, and reduce excess lighting in hallways and offices.
EMSL and Sigma II joined MATH and LSB as "Rock the Watt!" champions. In EMSL, staff members "chilled up" their ultra-low temperature freezers to a safe, but more efficient setting, reduced the stand-by temperature of a high-temperature calvet calorimeter instrument by 400°C, installed timers on lab equipment, and reduced lighting in offices. In Sigma II, occupants took new actions, including installing smart power strips and putting computers to sleep. Sigma II also stood out for taking many energy-saving actions before "Rock the Watt!"—they were energy-saving superstars already.
In total, 14 volunteer Building Sustainability Champions made this challenge a success, sending personal notes, walking through buildings, talking energy savings with fellow staff members, and following up on staff suggestions.
Cutting back our energy use at PNNL saves money and the environment—and this aligns with our mission to "transform the world. PNNL operations staff make continual energy reduction improvements to facilities, so it makes perfect sense for all staff members to take action too. Little by little, it all adds up, so keep up the good work conserving energy in our buildings, even after the challenge.
To find out more about what employees can do and what PNNL does as an organization to reduce our roughly $100,000 per week energy bills, visit the PNNL Sustainability website.
Global mass spectrometer company reaps the benefits of long-term partnership
The relationship between PNNL and Agilent Technologies dates back to the Agilent's inception in 1999 as a spin-out of Hewlett-Packard. Since then, the collaboration has been a critical and ongoing part of new product development for Agilent, a company that develops cutting edge analytical instrumentation and methodologies for engineers, scientists, and researchers around the globe to meet communications, electronics, life sciences, and chemical analysis challenges. Full Story >>
American Chemical Society Awards STEM Education Team
The inaugural American Chemical Society (ACS) Northwest Region's 2015 Partners for Progress and Prosperity Award is awarded to the team of PNNL-Battelle, Delta High School and MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Advancement). This partnership exemplifies the nature of this award—to recognize impactful outcomes and success in furthering science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education.
If you have feedback, questions or story ideas for our next issue, please send an email to Sustainability@pnnl.gov.