Promoting Pollution Prevention With Key Constituencies
The goal of this project was to eliminate the introduction of mercury into the environment from the Region 5 states, to enhance state-level pollution prevention work by providing new incentives for industries to adopt P2 measures and select source sector for mercury and other persistent bioaccumulative toxics (PBTs) and pursue ambitious pollution prevention measures in that sector.
This project aimed to focus and channel state mercury reduction and pollution prevention activities by defining statewide targets and mercury reduction plans, working closely with state agency personnel and other stakeholders, and putting particular emphasis on sectors where there is strong pollution prevention potential. The ongoing project aims to link strong state level programs with larger regional initiatives such as the Binational Toxics Strategy (BTS), to achieve the broad mercury reductions necessary to decisively reduce mercury and other PBT pollution in the Great Lakes.
Enhance state-level pollution prevention (P2) work by providing new incentives for industries to adopt P2 measures.
The National Wildlife Federation - Great Lakes Natural Resource Center (NWF) developed the mercury phase out proposal and briefed states on a mercury reduction initiative that would lead to virtual elimination of mercury pollution in the Great Lakes region. The mercury phase out proposal is designed to reward states for undertaking aggressive and effective mercury pollution prevention measures.
The proposal provides states with the option of meeting their extensive mercury-related watershed cleanup obligations under the Clean Water Act by entering into a memorandum of agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to phase out mercury over a discrete period of time. EPA and NWF’s work on developing a regional phase out plan provided an effective context for NEW to approach and work with agencies at the state level on mercury reduction efforts.
NWF worked with the state of Michigan to enhance mercury pollution prevention, using the mercury phase out proposal. NWF worked intensively with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) and state leaders to conceptualize, develop and cost out the mercury phase out plan that would virtually eliminate mercury releases in Michigan by 2020 and cut them by 90% by 2010.
NWF and MDEQ drafted and refined mercury reduction scenarios that demonstrate how and when Michigan can achieve increasing levels of mercury reduction. A report was drafted that explores the different types of reduction strategies that are feasible in each mercury emitting sector in Michigan, and the comparative costs of those strategies. The report reviews mercury reduction options for all know industries and sectors in Michigan which generate any substantial mercury emissions. These include, among others:
• coal-fired power generation, as well as commercial, industrial and domestic boilers
• hospital waste, municipal waste and sewage sludge incineration
• foundries and cement manufacturing
• automotive switches, dental amalgam, and fluorescent lamp manufacturing and use.
It was discovered, through this effort, that mercury emissions from medical waste incinerators; thought to have declined from 3400 pounds to 10 pounds or less, actually may still amount to up to 1,000 pounds. This finding reinforces the need for product substitution and pollution prevention in the medical sector to remain a high priority.
Work intensively in a single source sector to increase P2 for mercury and other PBTs.
NWF partnered with the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD), a publicly owned treatment works (POTW) in Detroit Michigan. Together they designed and implemented a pollution prevention strategy that focused on reducing PBT discharges from significant industrial users (SIUs) of water. Outreach materials, in the form of a survey on mercury issues were distributed to approximately 400 SIUs in the DWSD system.
- Getting to 90%: A Review of Mercury Phase Out Alternatives and Costs for Michigan
- Mercury in Products Guide
- Significant Industrial User Survey
- Sources of Mercury Fact Sheet
Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are funding this project.
Organizations Receiving Funding
Below is a list of organizations with individual contacts that are receiving funding for this project.
National Wildlife Federation - Primary Contact
Great Lakes Natural Resource Center
506 E. Liberty, 2nd Floor
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104-2210
Below is a list of associated organizations that are NOT giving or receiving funding for this project.
Delta Institute - Partner
53 W Jackson Blvd., Suite 1604
Chicago, Illinois 60604
p: (312) 554-0900
f: (312) 554-0193
Great Lakes United - Partner
Buffalo State College, Cassetty Hall
1300 Elmwood Ave.
Buffalo, New York 14222
p: (716) 886-0142
f: (716) 886-0303
Izaak Walton League - Partner
1619 Dayton Ave
St. Paul, Minnesota 55104
p: (651) 649-1446
Lake Michigan Federation - Partner
Michigan Environmental Council - Partner
119 Pere Marquette Drive
Lansing, Michigan 48912
f: 517-487-9541 firstname.lastname@example.org