For More Info, Contact:
Kroger & The Dispatch
Top SWACO Emerald Awards
New ideas to reduce the amount of food waste sent to SWACO's Franklin County Landfill and a remodeling project that recycled 96% of the demolition debris headline SWACO's 2009 Central Ohio Emerald Awards. The awards honoring environmental excellence in Franklin County were presented at the 4th annual Emeralds luncheon at the Aladdin Shrine Center at Easton.
"In these days of can't do it, our Emerald award winners are demonstrating a strong and green can do attitude," says SWACO Executive Director Ron Mills. "The 2009 Emerald winners show us that when we re-think our methods, the benefits are endless. We can be good stewards of the environment and grow our quality of life in Greater Columbus."
The Central Ohio division of Kroger received a 2009 Emerald for Environmental Leadership. Kroger's six-month organic waste pilot project composted almost 1,000 tons of spoiled or leftover produce, floral, and other organic waste from 24 Central Ohio stores. The move cut by 1/3 the hauling cycle for store compactors. It also saved the company thousands of dollars in landfill tipping fees. While the organic program is new, the company's dedication to the environment is not. In 2008, Central Ohio Kroger stores recycled 1-million pounds of plastic bags and 500,000 pounds of shrink wrap. The division office in Westerville recycled 117,000 pounds of office paper. Kroger plans to expand its recycling and composting efforts to all of its central Ohio stores.
Also receiving an Emerald for Environmental leadership, The Columbus Dispatch and the newspaper's Director of Engineering and Maintenance, Kevin George. When it came time to re-roof the Dispatch's Paper Warehouse, George found innovative ways to put 42,000 square feet of old roofing to new use. As a matter of fact, George managed to recycle 96% of the roofing materials. Examples of his diligence range from turning ballast rock into parking lots for Youth Athletic Fields, to making sure that 42,000 square feet of rubber membrane was either made into new roofing, or the soles for new shoes!
This year's Emerald Awards also launched a new sports partnership for SWACO. In conjunction with FirmGreen, Inc, SWACO will offer recycling at the 2009 Memorial Golf Tournament. "The Memorial Tournament is thankful and proud of its newly established relationship with SWACO and Firm Green", said Dan Sullivan, Executive Director of the Memorial Tournament. "Over the past few years we have discussed methods to better manage our waste stream during Tournament week. Although we were making progress we took major steps towards understanding our responsibility and opportunity when we sat down with the representatives at Firm Green and SWACO. The Tournament generates a significant amount of waste — over 100 tons — and with the help of Firm Green, SWACO and Rumpke we are building a better management plan which will assist in ensuring the majority of the waste is recycled or repurposed. We are very pleased that during Tournament week all Memorial patrons can be rest assured that the tons of waste generated will be managed responsibly."
SWACO Director Mills welcomed The Memorial to the SWACO sports lineup of partners. "Over the years, the Crew, the Blue Jackets and the Clippers have helped SWACO reach their fans with our green message. We know golf fans appreciate the environment around them and we believe joining with FirmGreen and The Memorial is a natural fit to promote recycling."
SWACO's Board of Trustees announced the institution of a new Emerald's category for the 2009 awards. "The Chairman's Award" was presented to Green Solutions Technologies. Trustees Chairman Bradley Frick presented the award to company founder Brad Malatesta. "Brad is a green pioneer who is cleaning up our environment and bringing new jobs to Central Ohio through his ground breaking technology." Malatesta was instrumental in helping bring federal stimulus money for a revolutionary onsite water treatment plant at SWACO's Franklin County landfill. He is also helping to install a first-of-a-kind treatment facility at Port Columbus that will recycle the de-icing fluid used on airplanes.
This year's Trustees Award at The Emeralds was given to Heartland Petroleum of Columbus. The company has constructed a used oil refinery on East Fifth Avenue that processes 20-million gallons of used motor oil annually. Heartland says every gallon of recycled oil saves 67 gallons in new crude oil production.
The Emerald for Partnership for 2009 is presented to "Limited Brands Inc." While the company has an impressive recycle/reuse rate of 84%, it received its second Emerald award for the partnership it formed with local non-profits, employees, and vendors. That effort diverted 10-million pounds of store fixtures, merchandise, packaging, and marketing products from the landfill.
Betty's Family of Restaurants is the 2009 recipient of The Emerald for Innovation. Among the green initiatives instituted by Betty's is a program that recycles 20,000 glass bottles a year from the chain of three restaurants. Betty's works with a local awards production company to recycle those bottles into trophies.
The general manager of radio station CD 101, Randy Malloy, and the station, are the Emerald award winners in Litter Clean-up. The duo is famous for the station's "Green Team" and "Eco 411." In 2008, the station, under Malloy's leadership, dedicated $200,000 of "in-kind" advertising to the cause.
In the Emerald category of Environmental Education, Roger Beck of Worthington Kilbourne High School has been honored. Beck's 2008 home construction class constructed a LEED Platinum certified home in Columbus. The project provided students hands on experience in green building.
Additional Emerald winners include long time Central Ohio health food store, "The Raisin Rack" for Entrepreneurship and Green Columbus for its efforts in organizing 2008 Earth Day festivities.
The Presenting Sponsor for The 2009 Central Ohio Emeralds is FirmGreen Inc. Additional support is provided by Ohio Mulch, Coca Cola Enterprises , Kurtz Brothers, Rumpke, G&J Pepsi-Cola Bottling, Turner Construction, American Electric Power (AEP), Battelle, Green Solutions Technologies, Coca Cola North America, and Civil & Environmental Consultants Inc. Media sponsors are WWCD-FM and Columbus Business First.
The Central Ohio Emerald awards are presented by The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio. SWACO serves Columbus and Franklin County, Ohio with innovative waste reduction and recycling projects. We believe that today's throwaways are the foundation for tomorrow. SWACO also offers residential recycling opportunities through 200 recycling drop off-locations, at major sporting and entertainment venues, at Columbus City Schools, The Columbus Arts Festival and other locations. SWACO provides leadership and advice for businesses wishing to begin recycling and waste reduction programs as well. Our operations include the Franklin County Landfill, three transfer stations, and other programs. More on SWACO at www.swaco.org.