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PP Wins Honorable Mention from National Pollution Prevention Roundtable for Zinc in Stormwater Runoff Project

Posted by Leonard on August, 22, 2014

Excited to announce that one of our videos recently won an honorable mention in the National Pollution Prevention Roundtable’s MVP2 awards for our film ‘Zinc in Stormwater: Galvanizing Business Solutions’. The awards are designed to recognize outstanding and innovative pollution prevention (P2) projects/programs judged on the 5 criteria: innovation, measurable results, transferability, commitment, and optimization of available project resources. The overall focus is on projects that demonstrate source reduction activities.

“The video provides context to the issue of zinc pollution by showing how the metal leaches into stormwater from many different sources. Because zinc comes from so many places, no one solution is likely to suffice for any business. Businesses need to carefully assess the sources of the metal and then implement a variety of site-specific solutions.”

The film was produced in connection with The Pollution Prevention Resource Center, and funded by a grant from The Russell Family Foundation. Increasingly, a number of commercial properties were not meeting the necessary benchmarks outlined by the WA Dept of Ecology and this video is meant to assist those entity’s efforts in getting into compliance following BMPs set forth by others regionally. See earlier blog posts for photos and more info.

ZINC in Stormwater: Galvanizing Business Solutions from pprc on Vimeo.

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Filming on Stormwater Project for Regional Nonprofit @ Port of Port Townsend

Posted by Leonard on March, 7, 2014

Spent a day this week filming at the Port of Port Townsend on a storm water project with Seattle based nonprofit PPRC (Pollution Prevention Resource Center). The project is about sharing best management practice regarding removing heavy metals from surface water before it drains into Puget Sound, our regional body of water, and with this site specifically at maritime facilities. Specifically zinc, is present in tires, roofing and siding, gutters, paint, fencing, pressure treated lumber and so many other materials and products found in a typical setting like this. Ironic that the material used to protect against the elements, in this case rust in the marine environment, is the main polluter. So the pollution sources are both the marine vessel maintenance and the on site buildings themselves. It was quite fascinating to learn about the port of Port Townsend being the only remaining DIY port in the state of Washington and the battle to maintain that character and access, which means allowing boat operators to work on their own boats in the facility 24/7. To my surprise that is apparently unheard of in this day and age and the battle to do so is both an importantly held value there, and a top reason for the presence of a high volume of heavy metals in their stormwater that they’re responsible for before it returns to sea. We spent most of the day with the environmental compliance officer whose role it is to police the work being done in the port, and make sure the rules and regulations are being enforced, specifically around things like whether people who are sanding their boats before painting have the proper vacuum attached to their sander to limit the airborne dust, where the toxic chemicals removed from the hulls of ships are draining to, as well as the installation of proper downspouts on the gutters of the port’s warehouse and maintenance buildings.
One sound bite that stuck with me from the interview with our host were the challenges of bridging the two worlds- that he had the credibility of having worked in the maritime trade for many years himself, but enforcing the environmental rules with a lot of salty dogs not too happy to have him around looking over their shoulders and ‘seeing those same guys at community BBQs and events in ‘a county of only 37,000 people’…

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