DEVENS ECO-EFFICIENCY CENTER
Helping area businesses and organizations reduce their environmental impacts and operating costs through education, collaboration and technical assistance.
Q About the Center
The Devens Eco-Efficiency Center Mission
To help area businesses and organizations reduce their environmental impacts and operating costs by providing education, enabling collaboration and offering technical assistance.
About the Center
The Devens Eco-Efficiency Center has been providing no- and low- cost services that enable commercial, industrial and service establishments to conserve resources, save money and contribute to the betterment of the community since 2008. The outcomes of this non-profit’s programs have earned local, state, regional, and federal awards. The Center has also helped Devens to be recognized internationally for its approach to sustainable development and eco-industrial park practices.
The Center provides educational forums, technical assistance, networking venues, and partnership opportunities that help establishments make more efficient use of natural, material, human, and economic resources.
Programs and Services
· Education – Offerings include quarterly workshops and monthly Environmental, Health, Safety Roundtables. These forums help participants learn about new regulations, improved technologies and operational practices that can impact their facilities.
· EcoStar – Members of this voluntary stewardship program receive dedicated assistance with sustainability initiatives, waived fees for educational offerings, and prioritized participation in The Great Exchange.
· The Great Exchange (TGE) – This program facilitates the reuse of 50-70 tons of materials annually by partnering facilities with other firms and non-profits that can repurpose what would otherwise be treated as trash. Exchanges also provide savings with avoided purchase and disposal costs.
· Technical assistance – Dedicated support can expedite the development, implementation and evaluation of sustainability programs and procedures that deliver savings with reduced waste generation, energy conservation, etc.
· Walk-through Review – Insights gathered from a facility tour and conversations with senior managers inform a follow-up report and matrix that is used to identify, prioritize and execute efficiency opportunities.
· Community Events – Activities bring representatives of local establishments together to meet their neighbors, explore opportunities to collaborate, and work together on community betterment projects. An example is the annual Earth Day Celebration, which on average attracts 75 volunteers from 10 facilities. Past activities also include a collection of toiletries for area homeless and a blood drive.
The Devens Eco-Efficiency Center has has quickly demonstrated its value. To date it has helped more than 60 entities from 16 towns gain ecological and economical efficiencies. Examples of success include:
· The EHS Roundtable initially met quarterly and attracted an average of 10 participants. This novel forum now takes place monthly and the number of attendees has doubled as a result of the value of the information shared.
· A manufacturer of fine giftware can promote itself as a zero-waste operation as a result of the assistance it received in the areas of waste reduction, recycling, and reuse partnerships; these advances also lowered waste management costs. Energy consumption was also reduced by more than 12% with the institution of a conservation campaign.
· A local metal fabricator saved an estimated $6,000 in one year by participating in the Great Exchange and reusing packing materials that previously other businesses were disposing.
· An area food manufacturer diverts more than 5,000 large plastics bags and 100 gaylords (large containers) annually for reuse through Great Exchange partnerships. As a result, they have significantly reduced their waste disposal costs and art groups, schools and charities, have avoided the need to purchase trash bags and storage containers.
· No-cost energy conservation and efficiency measures that could provide more than $86,000 in annual savings were identified for a Devens-based manufacturer of aerospace systems.