Session1:Striving for Sustainability Through Beyond Compliance Approaches
· Lessons from a Sustainable Service Provider
Jessica Owen, GIS Technician, Marstel-Day LLC
Marstel-Day, LLC is a socially and environmentally progressive company that is deeply committed to integrating green practices into the company’s projects and operations. To develop and implement a robust, company-wide culture of sustainability and green practices, in 2008 we created a Green Vision Council (GVC) which has enabled us to implement a comprehensive arc of environmental stewardship initiatives. We believe that the GVC framework is both cost effective and replicable by other companies and organizations. Key GVC attributes are: (1) company employees volunteer to take responsibility to carry out internal green initiatives; (2) employees rotate off the committee every 6 months and new staff members join; (3) all offices are involved - including Fredericksburg, Richmond, and Alexandria, Virginia; and (4) the GVC includes employees from all aspects of company operations – Projects, IT, HR, supply and purchasing – thereby ensuring cross-functionality and representation.
· Beyond Compliance: A Review of Virginia Environmental Success Stories
Morgan Goodman, Environmental Specialist, Virginia DEQ
Business operations in Virginia can have significant environmental impacts, but how can they go beyond regulatory compliance and why would they choose to? DEQ’s Office of Pollution Prevention (P2) has a unique perspective on what it takes to be a success story and the benefits of doing so. P2 staff has seen firsthand how many approaches there are to implementing environmental programs and what underlying factors are indicators of success. Incorporating information from the Virginia Environmental Excellence Program (VEEP), Governor’s Environmental Excellence Awards, and P2 Case Studies, key program factors for strengthening environmental management were identified. When a strong environmental program is in place, businesses can manage environmental risks, reduce costs, participate in voluntary programs, and engage stakeholders. Staff, community members, and regulators recognize businesses that are motivated to go beyond regulatory compliance.
· Engaging Businesses through Businesses for the Bay
Corinne Stephens, Business Partnerships Manager, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay
Businesses can play a critical role in protecting and restoring the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed. Businesses for the Bay, a partnership of the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and the business community, is a membership association providing the Chesapeake business community with a unique opportunity to network, be recognized, and motivate employees. The mission of Businesses for the Bay is to encourage businesses, both large and small, to find voluntary, innovative, and measurable solutions to improve water quality and the health of the Chesapeake Bay, and to raise public understanding of the valuable role these business members play in the Bay restoration. In 2014 and 2015, the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay held the first Chesapeake Business Forums to open a dialogue with businesses across the Chesapeake Bay watershed and inform design of the new Businesses for the Bay program. My presentation will discuss the findings from these Chesapeake Business Forums and present the new Businesses for the Bay program, including actions that businesses can take to protect and restore the Chesapeake Bay watershed, and the benefits and details of Businesses for the Bay membership and sponsorship.
Session 2: Stormwater Management Case Studies
Moderator: Ellen Graap Loth, Senior Environmental Scientist, Cardno
· Evaluation of Publicly Maintained Bioretention Facilities
Christopher Mueller, Project Manager, Fairfax County Stormwater Management Division
Bioretention is one of the most widely used Low Impact Development (LID)-based stormwater management practices in Fairfax County, VA. To ensure the optimum performance of these facilities, they need to be adequately designed, built, inspected, and maintained. The purpose of this study was to develop a protocol to assess the construction quality, performance and maintenance state of bioretention facilities early on in their functional life. In partnership with the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District, the Fairfax County Department of Public Works and Environmental Services, Maintenance and Stormwater Management Division, used the protocol to evaluate 90 publicly-maintained bioretention facilities in Fairfax County. All facilities were designed according to local and state design criteria, permitted by the county, and receive credit towards mandatory pollutant reductions. As part of the study, existing structural specifications such as ponding depth, facility footprint, soil media depth and soil media hydrodynamic properties, among others, were evaluated. An inventory of the existing plants, comparison with the original planting plan, and the dominant invasive and volunteer plants was prepared. Lack of construction compliance with the original design was one of the main findings of this study. The study makes recommendations on how to improve construction oversight and compliance with the original design at the time of construction.
· Nutrient Management and MS4 Compliance at the Northern Virginia Community Colleges
Sara Rilveria, Landscape Architect, EEE Consulting, Inc.
Stacey Moulds, Senior Environmental Scientist, Obsidian, Inc.
Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) offers a quality and convenient educational experience at an affordable price. Four of the NOVA campuses (Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun and Woodbridge) have a Phase II General Permit for the Discharge of Stormwater from Small Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (MS4). NOVA implements an MS4 Program Plan that includes best management practices (BMPs) to address six minimum control measures (MCMs) and special conditions for the Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) where NOVA has been assigned a wasteload allocation (WLA), including the Chesapeake Bay TMDL. The Chesapeake Bay TMDL and the Virginia Phase I Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP) requires "that all state agencies, state colleges and universities, ? that own land upon which fertilizer, manure, sewage sludge or other compounds containing nitrogen or phosphorus are applied to support agricultural, turf, plant growth, or other uses shall develop and implement a nutrient management plan (NMP) for such land." DEQ issued a new MS4 General Permit on July 1, 2013 that requires MS4 operators to develop NMPs where nutrients are applied to a contiguous area greater than one acre. NOVA recently updated their NMP's for each campus based on the Virginia DCR Virginia Nutrient Management Standards and Criteria (Revised July 2014. Based on the soil test results, current turf conditions, the intensity of use, and overall visibility and aesthetic considerations, Nutrient Management Areas (NMA) at each campus were established. The number of nutrient management areas was kept to a minimum to facilitate effective management and still protect water quality and maintain healthy turf. The NMPs included detailed maps and recommendations for the NMAs at each campus including a general description of the condition of each area, the size of the area, annual nitrogen (N), phosphorous (P), and potassium (K) fertilization recommendations, and general liming considerations. Like most public facilities the campuses have turf areas where there is ineffective groundcover, including turfgrass. Areas where there is ineffective groundcover have been temporarily removed from active nutrient management until such time as corrective measures can be completed to either establish suitable turf or implement other landscape solutions (groundcovers, hardscape, etc.).
Session 3: UAV Flight Demonstration
Moderator: Harry Gregori, President, Gregori Consulting, LLC
· UAV Flight Demonstration
Scott Strimple, CEO, Virginia UAS
Robert Klenke, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University
William Shuart, VCU Rice Rivers Center and Center for Environmental Studies
This panel will demonstrate operating capabilities of a UAV (in limited area) and discuss applications. Information on UAV types, lifting capacity,range, GPS characteristics, special sensors and training needs will be discussed.
Session 4: Beneficial Use Drones (UAV's) for the Environment
Moderator: Harry Gregori, President, Gregori Consulting, LLC
· Beneficial Use Drones (UAV’s) for the Environment
Scott Strimple, CEO, Virginia UAS
Robert Klenke, Ph.D., Virginia Commonwealth University
William Shuart, VCU Rice Rivers Center and Center for Environmental Studies
Problem: Increasing need to monitor environmental factors or significant aspects (ISO14001:2015) (wetlands, pipelines, smokestacks, utilities, property security) as well as associated risk including emergency service response (fire, police, medical) present opportunities to reduce the cost of monitoring, and increase capabilities to manage environmental resources. The purpose of this session is to share information with participants regarding UAV capabilities, the regulatory environment, and discuss the future of UAVs. Videos will be utilized to demonstrate examples of UAV applications. NOTE: An associated session is proposed for flight demonstration at a separate time and location. Scope of Work Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) provides significant opportunities to monitor environmental resources, assets and reduce risk. The current regulatory environment has caused confusion within the UAV (air) and UV (unmanned vehicle - air, water, land) communities. This session will inform participants of the current state of UAV operations and management; distinguish operations (Operational Sectors) associated with high level predatory type vehicles (military focus), the hobbyist, and focus on applications for units of government, business and industry. Geographic Orientation The focus of the presentation will be on opportunities in Virginia. Problem Solving Approach Information regarding UAV (aka Drones) is not consistent across Operational Sectors with much of the media focus on military operations and the unfortunate hobbyist miscalculations. Two respected experts in Virginia will present information based on their knowledge and skills associated with regulations, research and operations. Results As a result of the differential coverage and understanding of UAV (Drones) capabilities, attendees will have a greater understanding of the beneficial use of UAV's for the environment (and rules, perceptions) for government, business and industrial focused applications. Implication of Results Many business, industry and units of government want to pursue use of UAV technology but are unsure of operational environment, rules and liability. Emergency response personnel may find great advantage using UAVs. This session will allow participants to evaluate and develop a path forward.
Session 5: Farm Manure-to-Energy Initiative: Using Excess Poultry Litter to Generate Renewable Energy and New Sources of Revenue for Farmers in High-Density Animal Production Regions of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed
Moderator: Kristen Hughes Evans, M.S., Executive Director, Sustainable Chesapeake
· Farm Manure-to-Energy Initiative: Using Excess Poultry Litter to Generate Renewable Energy and New Sources of Revenue for Farmers in High-Density Animal Production Regions of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed
John Ignosh, M.S., Virginia Tech - Department of Biological Systems Engineering
Mark Reiter, Ph.D., Virginia Tech - Eastern Shore Agricultural Research and Extension Center
Glenn Rodes, Owner, Riverhill Farm
The Farm Manure-to-Energy Initiative has been working to evaluate the feasibility of using excess poultry litter as a fuel to provide heat to poultry housing and new sources of revenue for poultry litter nutrients. Project partners installed four technologies on five farms in the region. Technologies were evaluated for technical, environmental and financial feasibility. Panelists (including project partners from the environmental, cooperative extension, agronomy, and poultry industry sectors) will discuss the results of the project, focusing on the opportunities and challenges associated with widespread adoption of these technologies.
Session 6: Creating an Urban Landscape That Enhances Environment and Community
Moderator: Adele Ashkar, FASLA, Associate Dean for Academic Excellence, GW College of Professional Studies
· Creating an Urban Landscape That Enhances Environment and Community
Lauren E. Wheeler, LEED AP, Program Director and Faculty, Landscape Design & Sustainable Landscapes Programs, GW College of Professional Studies
Linette Straus, ASLA, Professional Practice Manager, American Society of Landscape Architects
The George Washington University envisions a future with resource systems that are healthy and thriving for all. This panel presentation details the efforts of one University in three areas related to formulating policy and implementing a campus environment that fulfills this vision.
In 2009, the GW Office of Sustainability published the GW Ecosystems Enhancement Strategy based on input from internal and external stakeholders to integrate sustainability into academics, research, practice, and outreach. The Strategy addresses the university’s impact and dependence on resource systems on campus, in the Chesapeake Bay eco-region, and globally. It provides a framework for specific action plans such as a zero waste plan, climate action plan, and water plan.
Currently a cross-functional team of faculty, staff, and students are working on Sustainable Landscapes Guidelines. This document will encourage campus planning that addresses the six goals of the Strategy. The Guidelines provide an analysis of the physical condition of the campus landscape as well as social and behavioral aspects of the use of outdoor space by students, faculty, staff and neighbors. The Guidelines build a regenerative design approach for the campus landscape.
GW’s Square 80 Plaza is a Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES®) certified pilot project. The SITES program for sustainable landscape development, administered by the Green Business Certification, Inc. (GBCI), provides tools, guidelines and performance benchmarks for ecologically resilient landscapes that measure performance in the economic, environmental, and social dimensions of sustainability. Square 80 Plaza is a powerful example of sustainable design; it advances the goals of GW’s Ecosystem Enhancement Strategy in measurable ways while providing much-needed green open space in a highly urban context.
Session 7: Environmental Management Case Studies
· Advantages of Artificial Turf Closure Cap at Louisa County Landfill
Richard Brown, P.E., Senior Technical Consultant, Joyce Engineering, Inc.
Louisa County considered several options for capping their 14-acre unlined landfill. The option with the lowest initial cost was a conventional clay cap for $2.1M. The County decided to invest an additional $300,000 (14%) for an innovative, first in Virginia, structured geomembrane/artificial turf (SGAT) cap system which has several long-term economic advantages. First, the SGAT system allows an addition 2.0 ft of waste (45,000 cy) to be placed within the permitted airspace limits by eliminating the conventional 18-inch infiltration and 6-inch vegetative support layers at a value of $1.5M. Second, the Owner will save about $100,000/year on maintenance because there will be no mowing, slope erosion repair, or sediment removal from ditch at base of slope. Third, since the closure area side slopes are already lined with 50-mil LLDPE geomembrane, there will be savings on future piggyback expansion lining. The SGAT system components at Louisa include a structured geomembrane barrier with spikes on the lower side to provide frictional resistance with the intermediate cover soil subgrade and studs on the top side to provided stormwater drainage. The artificial turf product installed over the geomembrane is a woven geotextile on the lower side with artificial turf strands on the top side. Concrete sand was spread and brushed into the turf surface to provide ballast. Diversion berms, downslope drainage channels, and stormwater conveyance channels were lined with a sand/cement grout to resist erosion from stormwater. Surficial landfill gas is collected in strips installed below the geomembrane and vented through passive gas vents on spacing no greater than one per acre. The end result is an aesthetically pleasing, uniformly green, maintenance-free closure cap surface that is warranted for 20 years.
· An Adaptive Management Strategy for Reducing PCBs in Storm Water at a Manufacturing Facility
Currie Mixon, Senior Engineer, GEI Consultants, Inc.
Robert Wallace, Senior Environmental Engineer, ABB
PCBs can be ubiquitous in the built environment. Due to their chemical stability and tendency to sorb, PCBs have a strong tendency to bioaccumulate. Hence, risk-based water quality criteria related to these compounds tend to be very low. Specifically, water quality criteria can be close to method detection limits - in units of picograms per liter, which are six to nine orders of magnitude lower than other common pollutants in storm water. These issues make this class of compounds particularly difficult to mitigate economically and effectively. We are presenting the framework for a systematic approach to prioritize and address PCB storm water discharges at a manufacturing facility. The first component of this approach is to develop a conceptual site model (CSM) that allows for identifying the contaminant transport and potential stormwater pathways. An effective CSM aids in cost-benefit analysis of targeted best management practices (BMPs) which will provide the largest reductions for the lowest cost. Future work will compare the anticipated reductions in the pollutants with the costs for implementing the BMPs such that projects can be initially prioritized. As projects are completed, monitoring results from the storm water outfalls will allow the team to implement adaptive management practices by evaluating performance of various BMPs to target technologies that provide the largest reductions while seeking to avoid diminishing returns on investment.
Session 8: Environmental Management: Electronics Recycling
· Electrokinetic Remediation Technology for Soil Contaminated by E-Waste
Jillian Leary, James Madison University
Maryam Ekbatani, James Madison University
Electronic waste (e-waste) is becoming one of the most rapidly growing environmental issues in the world (Widmer, 2007; Hester et al., 2008). This waste is often composed of both heavy metals and toxic organic matter. To avoid costly recycling methods at the end of the lifetime of an electronic device, manufacturers and consumers often times irresponsibly dump the waste. In 2007, it was found that approximately 80% of e-waste disposed of yearly eventually makes its way to a landfill; despite the presence of a landfill’s protective lining, contaminants may still leach to the surrounding areas (Wong, 2007). As a result of this, heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, chromium, nickel, plutonium, arsenic and uranium are deposited into the soil. In addition, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) make their way into the soil (Reddy et al., 2004). The aforementioned chemical species have the potential to leak into and contaminate water supplies, as well as cause infertility in soil. This may cause adverse health effects to local human and wildlife upon consumption of the water (Liulin et al., 2011).
The presences of heavy metals in soil, specifically copper, nickel, and lead, can cause significant damage to the environment and human health as a result of their mobility’s and solubility’s. The goal of this research is to relate voltage gradient and removal efficiency of Lead, Copper, and Nickel in soil to advance the understanding and application of electrokinetic technology.
The objective of this project is to investigate the effects of varying voltage gradients on removal efficiency of lead, copper, and nickel in sand and peat soils. A series of experiments with voltage gradients will be conducted.
· Responsible Electronics Recycling in Virginia
Michael Stegeman, Franchise Development, Securis
An average American household currently has 24 electronic devices. In Virginia homes alone, there are 70 million computers, phones, printers, and more - weighing 541,190,000 million pounds. When considering that this number doesn't include electronics used for businesses and government, the amount of equipment out there is staggering, and increasing each year. The United States produces more than 50 million tons of e-waste annually, but only a mere 15 percent of that is being responsibly recycled. At the rate that technology is evolving, the amount of electronic devices becoming obsolete will continue to grow. What happens to these devices once they're retired? Realizing this growing need, Securis has been providing secure IT recycling for companies, government agencies, and the community in Northern Virginia for more than 10 years with a 100% guarantee that nothing processed will end up in landfills. Securis recycles millions of pounds of electronics every year and has a client list that includes companies such as General Dynamics, Navy Federal Credit Union, Raytheon, and the Federal Reserve. In 2013, Securis became the first electronic recycling company to successfully franchise their business and now has 7 locations up and down the East Coast ranging from North Carolina to New Jersey, including two in Virginia. Securis also provides monthly electronics recycling events for the community in each location. This presentation will focus on why there are so few electronic devices being properly recycled in Virginia and the United States. We will look at the environmental impacts of not properly disposing electronics and the importance of residents, businesses, and local municipalities choosing a certified, responsible recycler. We'll cover what to look for when choosing an electronics recycler. We will give specific case studies of what Securis does to help organizations and individuals to properly dispose their electronic assets.