Dry cleaners have long been an environmental concern due to their use of chlorinated solvents and the nature of these chemicals to penetrate beneath concrete slabs, into the subsurface, and spread through groundwater. While many modern dry cleaning businesses use a less harmful petroleum-based cleaning chemical, or other non-toxic compounds, there are still many sites out there that have residual solvent issues from long ago.
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Congratulations to Joe Campisi, Vice President of EHS Services! On March 13, 2014, Joe was recognized and presented with the Patriot Award for his outstanding support of EBI employee Kreig Martinek and the United States Armed Forces.
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Reminder: The Tier II Reporting deadline of March 1, 2014 for Reporting Year 2013 is fast approaching. Reports must be filed annually with the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC), Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC), and the local Fire Department. Don't fall behind...
The Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) was created to help plan for emergencies involving hazardous substances, and to provide the public with better access to information about the chemicals used at individual facilities and their associated risks.
According to EPCRA regulations (40 CFR 370.10), facilities that store more than the threshold planning quantities (TPQ) of hazardous substances onsite at any one time during the year, must submit an annual Tier II report on the types and quantities of substances they use and store to state and local authorities.
If your facility holds the following substances, you may be subject to Tier II Reporting:
- 10,000 lbs of Commonly Used Substances such as Ice Melt, Speedi-Dri, Fertilizer, etc.
- Approximately 1,560 gallons of petroleum products (ie. machine oils, hydraulic oils, fuel oil)
- 500 pounds of anhydrous ammonia - Check your Refrigeration or Cooling systems
- 10,000 pounds (2,500 gallons) of propane
- Approximately 46 gallons of sulfuric acid (On average, batteries are 40% Sulfuric Acid by weight)
Do you have an Electric Forklift?
One electric forklift may trigger the Tier II reporting requirement for your facility.
Don't forget about the emergency backup batteries for your data center!
For more information please visit our full article on this subject
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On November 13th, EBI proudly co-sponsored the Mortgage Banker Association of New York's "Generational Real Estate" Panel Discussion. Our own Josh Simon, Senior Account Executive and MBA of NY Program Chair, coordinated the program. The panel featured several exceptional Real Estate Industry leaders, and was graciously hosted by Morgan Stanley and EisnerAmper. To find out more about the event, please visit Real Estate Weekly and read their review of the event.
The ASTM Committee has upheld changes to the Phase 1 Standard that was released during the first week of November -- the new standard was written to reflect current practices in the industry. Under ASTM rules, the existing version (ASTM E1527-05) was approaching its expiration date and needed to either be discontinued or reissued by December 31st. Though some distinct modifications were made, the latest edition (ASTM E-1527-13) is not a significant departure from existing ESA criteria.
While the EPA has accepted the 2013 entry as satisfying all requirements of AAI, it also noted that the 2005 installment is still valid. However, the ASTM will eventually be retiring the old version, encouraging most to adopt the 2013 revisions much sooner -- legal counsel and consultants would advise against using any outdated standard.
For more information, please download our white paper on the changes!
If you have any questions about these changes or would like to speak with an account executive, please contact EBI!
On October 5 2013, another team of EBI employees volunteered their time on a beautiful fall Saturday to take part in EBI's 2nd Habitat for Humanity Build day.
A team of 13 volunteers again showed their support to the local New England community by assisting Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell with their projects on Rock Street in Lowell, MA. The build site will contain 4 homes (2 duplexes), which will provide 4 families with a place to call home.
Not only was it a great teambuilding event for EBI employees, but it was also a great way for EBI employees to give back to the community and to be a part of the revitalization of this Lowell neighborhood.
For our second build day on Rock Street, EBI team members took part in various building projects, including interior and exterior painting, installing a vapor barrier and sheet rocking.
The event was a great success; everyone agreed it was an afternoon well spent and with EBI teamwork, we made great progress towards completion of the project, which is expected to be in less than a month (dedication ceremony slated for Veterans day).
EBI Consulting would like to thank Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell for all of the work they do to better our community. We are honored to have been a part of building these homes for deserving families.
For more information on Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell, or how you can get involved, please visit their website at http://lowellhabitat.org/
In a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) adopted on September 26, 2013, the FCC has proposed changes to streamline the regulatory process for distributed antenna systems (DAS) and temporary cell installations. DAS installations require the deployment of numerous, low-power antennas across a wide geographic area - a situation that the current FCC NEPA process is not well suited for. Additionally, as DAS systems are often deployed in urban settings, the NPRM seeks to streamline the Section 106 process as well. The FCC NPRM proposes three options to tackle the challenge: (1) create a categorical exclusion, (2) create an alternative program, or (3) not define DAS projects as "Federal undertakings" thereby excluding it from the NEPA/Section 106 process.
The FCC is also seeking to implement changes to the regulatory process for deploying temporary antenna installations. In times when coverage demand exceeds existing wireless infrastructure capabilities on a temporary basis (major sporting events, conventions, parades etc.), or when wireless coverage is unavailable (natural disasters, blackouts, etc.), temporary antenna installations may be deployed. As some of these needs may be unanticipated, it may not always be prudent to follow current registration requirements. CTIA submitted comments and the FCC granted an interim waiver for temporary towers meeting certain conditions; the current NPRM seeks to codify these waivers to more efficiently deploy temporary antenna structures in emergency and non-emergency situations.
Other topics covered in the NPRM include the clarification of the Section 6409(a) of the Spectrum Act, as well as the 2009 Declaratory Ruling's interpreting 47 U.S.C. §332(c)(7). Comments on the NPRM will be due 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register, and replies due 90 days after publication. However, amidst the current government shutdown, the Federal Register is only publishing articles related to national security and imminent threats to human life or personal property. The NPRM will be published once the Federal government resumes normal operations, so be sure to check back for updates at that time.
With President Obama's recently announced Climate Action Plan looming in the background, the EPA kicked off Pollution Prevention (P2) week on Monday September 16. This year, the focus of P2 week is to focus on carbon pollution. The public has been reminded to make purchases with the environment in mind, from energy efficient appliances and fixtures to fuel-efficient vehicles and safer (and less toxic) pesticides and products. Consumer-facing programs such as Watersense, Greener Products, and Fueleconomy.gov are all intended to complement recent changes in federal policy and regulations, such as the Renewable Fuel Standards and updated Clean Air Act standards.
The most recent updates to the Clean Air Act now include proposed carbon-cutting measures applicable to new power plants. The new standards are intended to limit carbon pollution and spur the creation and adoption of new technologies and procedures that will lead to a cleaner and more efficient energy economy. The new limits will break ground as the first restrictions specifically related to carbon emissions. Furthermore, the regulations are expected to benefit citizens by improving public health and helping to mitigate the risks posed by global climate change.
Federal focus on the power generation sector is crucial to US success because power plants represent roughly 30-35% of the country's emissions, the largest direct emission source in the country. Additional public and stakeholder commentary periods are currently underway, with the EPA expecting to formally introduce the new standards on June 1 of next year.
When it comes to energy efficiency it appears that the EPA is playing games. The Agency kicked off its 4th annual Energy Star National Building Competition, which pits commercial buildings against one another to see who can reduce their energy consumption by the highest percentage.
Last year's "Battle of the Buildings" provided a cumulative savings of over $50 Million. The competition this year will will include over 3,200 participants (representing all US States and Territories) hoping to cut energy usage by implementing behavioral change programs, installing new equipment, and monitoring monthly usage data.
The EPA has taken things into the realm of social media as well, with a dedicated Twitter feed for the competition, as well as a photo stream where competitors can add visual documentation of their initiatives. Check out the EPA's interactive map to view participating buildings.
In addition to the building competition, the EPA also launched an Online Green Sports Resource Directory in conjunction with the 3rd annual Green Sports Alliance Summit. The Green Sports Alliance (GSA) is a non-profit group working to reduce the environmental impact of sports teams, venues, and events. The group accomplishes this goal by providing a network of teams that share best practices and tools for improved environmental management. Sports are unique in their high level of social influence and concentrated environmental impacts.
The EPA has been a partner of the GSA since its inception in 2010. Releasing the Green Sports Resource Directory is simply another step toward strengthening this partnership and increasing access to information that will help athletic teams, leagues, and venues reduce waste and energy consumption while also providing an additional communication pathway with the general public.
Here at EBI, our field scientists spend a lot of time on the road travelling to different properties for site visits. This has been one of our bigger challenges as we try to become a more eco-conscious company and encourage our employees to go green.
One of our employees, Darrell Cheng, is based in New York City and travels around the city all the time to perform testing and sampling for hazardous materials, such as asbestos and lead paint. Darrell has found that taking his bike around NYC is actually the easiest, and greenest, way to get to and from work sites! He sent us a photo of his bike all packed up ready for a site visit: