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Sustainable research, operations and community

Rock the Watt!"Rock the Watt!"
Building Energy Challenge
Runs through January 2015

All over campus, employees are taking a bite out of PNNL's $100,000 weekly energy bills by turning in personal printers; unplugging unused equipment; installing timers and smart power strips; changing their computer sleep settings; and contacting Facilities to remove excess overhead lighting. Volunteer Building Sustainability Champions are working with their fellow occupants to spread the word about actions they can take to save energy.

In December, employees in LSB and the MATH building were recognized for logging the most energy saving actions, and received t-shirts or tote bags for their stand-out performances.


Receive Funding for Sustainability Ideas
Sustainability Pay$ Deadline Jan. 30

Sustainable IdeasDo you have a great idea to improve sustainability for your group or the Laboratory? Sustainability Pay$ is funding ideas that will have a direct and measurable impact on PNNL's Triple Bottom Line—environmental stewardship, social responsibility and economic prosperity.

Applications for projects that result in reducing building energy use and greenhouse gas emissions; minimizing use of water; traveling smarter by reducing impacts of business travel or staff commuting; reducing material purchases; safety enhancements; reducing material purchases and waste; or acquiring more sustainable products (e.g. bio-based antifreeze, rechargeable batteries, etc.) will be considered for funding.

Of the project proposals funded in FY14, two noteworthy successes are:

  • Smart Instrument Power Management (EMSL). A typical NMR console has 3-4 radio frequency amplifier units that cater to different frequencies and power requirements. Typically, only 2 of the 4 channels are used for the majority of the research projects, but all the amplifier units are powered 24/7. Installation of a smart power distribution unit (PDU) enables a user to power off unneeded amplifier units from a web-based interface and improve energy management of a NMR console. During FY14, approximately 60 percent reduction in energy used is observed with the installation of these PDUs (approximately 80,000 kWhr per year reduction achieved in EMSL). The reduced power usage also decreases the amount of heat generated from the NMR consoles and helps in reducing the building cooling demand. Other benefits include prolonging the equipment life span and reduced routine maintenance.
  • PNNL Sustainable Laboratory Operations Assessment (EED). The intent of this project was to understand what changes in laboratory operations would have a measurable impact on PNNL's sustainability performance, including behaviors, technologies, policies and procedures. The project team developed a protocol for assessing laboratory sustainability performance in five areas: energy use, water use, chemical use, sustainable purchase management and waste management. The team evaluated 12 biological, chemical and instrumentation laboratories and found opportunities to improve efficiency, reduce energy use and cut operational expenses when implemented. Researchers and cognizant space managers interested in assessing the sustainability of their own laboratory spaces may use the protocol.

This opportunity is available to all staff members. To take advantage of it, contact Jennifer Su-Coker (371-7859).


Transferring Technology That Makes a Difference

PNNL Major Contributor to Washington State Economy

Economic Impact of PNNL on the State of WA in FY 2013A new study of PNNL's economic impact on the state of Washington revealed it supported $1.3 billion and 6,800 jobs in the state last year, as well as another $1.2 billion dollars and over 6,400 jobs through closely related economic activities.

The report, titled "Economic Impact of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory on the State of Washington in Fiscal Year 2013" can be viewed from the PNNL Business Facts web page.

Doing Business with PNNL

PNNL: Your Technology Innovation PartnerA new flier explains what PNNL offers industry. "PNNL: Your Technology Innovation Partner" is a high-level overview of how companies can tap into PNNL through technologies for licensing, collaborative research and development opportunities, technology assistance, and other resources. The flier also explains why companies should choose PNNL and shows the contracting mechanisms for businesses. The flier is available on the Doing Business at PNNL website.


Fostering Next Generation STEM Workforce

Delta High School ConstructionWatch the New Delta High School Facility as it is Being Built

Our local STEM high school opened in 2009, and now that it has grown to full capacity (400 students), it is overcrowded. Teachers are sharing rooms and using space at the adjacent Columbia Basin College (CBC) Health Sciences building.

Happily, Delta High School students and staff are closely watching construction on their brand new building set to open in Pasco in fall 2015. Delta technology teacher Michael Seetakes shares weekly pictures to help the staff focus on the new building while they manage the space challenges at the current facility.

Delta High was a community effort that grew from a discussion by founding members from Battelle, Washington State University Tri-Cities, and the Kennewick, Pasco and Richland School Districts about the possibility of a STEM high school in the Tri-Cities. The new 23,000-square-foot facility was made possible thanks to funding from the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Washington State Legislature, local school districts and our community.

Watch the progress via a live webcam, courtesy of the Pasco School District.


Awards and Honors

PNNL Receives Bicycle-Friendly Recognition

>Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business AwardPNNL was recognized with a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business award for its efforts to encourage bicycling among staff members as an option for commuting to work. The award includes access to a variety of free tools and technical assistance from the League of American Bicyclists to become even more bicycle-friendly.

Environmental Management System Award Won

>Environmental Management System Award AwardThe PNNL Sustainable Campus initiative is indeed an impressive endeavor that is getting noticed by our community and DOE customer alike. Most recently, our efforts were recognized with the Environmental Management System Award from the Eastern Washington Chapter of the Academy of Certified Hazardous Material Managers. Take a look at the Tri-City Herald article in which the other winners are named.