The University of Missouri's Environmental Assistance Center recently announced the results of this year's pollution prevention partnership with Missouri business and industry.
This has been the most successful year to date for the EAC's Pollution Prevention Program, a collaboration between the MU Extension Business Development Program and the College of Engineering. It matches engineering interns with companies and municipalities across Missouri to identify cost savings related to improved environmental performance.
"In a ten-week period, the interns identified more than $480,000 in environmental savings opportunities, pushing total savings for the program, which started in 2008, to nearly a million dollars," says Marie Steinwachs, EAC director. "The results show that the environmental and economic health of Missouri businesses and organizations is directly linked."
The Pollution Prevention Program's achievements for 2010 include:
"All companies and organizations that hired one of our interns have gained much more than they spent," says Steinwachs. "Not only do they learn where savings were found, but they receive an analysis that includes the cost of implementation and return on investment."
Interns also identify where grants, loans and utility incentives can offset the cost of implementing the recommendations. Steinwachs urges businesses to apply now for an intern for 2011.
"The business application process is simple. We're already taking applications for next summer; the deadline is Apr. 1," says Steinwachs.
"The pollution prevention intern project is an excellent example of what can be achieved when the University works with business and industry. It utilizes the expertise of students and faculty to bring real-world solutions to companies and municipalities facing present day environmental issues, plus it helps everyone save a lot of money."
This story was featured in the November 2010 newsletter
- Leah Christian, Missouri Environmental Assistance Center