November 1, 2002
Purdue institute receives EPA grant to aid environment
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. An institute based at Purdue University has received an additional $381,500 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency to assist in an effort to prevent harmful chemicals from reaching the environment.
The Indiana Clean Manufacturing and Safe Technologies Institute at Purdue will use the funds to help more widely disseminate to industry a software tool that will help chemical companies screen for hazardous compounds that could be created during new product development. The software, called the Persistence, Bioaccumulative and Toxic (PBT) Profiler, is free and available online.
Lynn Corson, CMTI director, said the software needs to be introduced widely to chemical companies.
"Use of the PBT Profiler could eliminate potential future environmental problems before they emerge," Corson said. "The Great Lakes, to take just one example, have a major problem with hazardous chemical accumulation due to heavy manufacturing nearby. We will use this grant to educate regional and state associations about the Profiler so that manufacturers in their areas can put it to effective use."
PBTs are toxic substances that persist for extended periods in the environment and build up, or bioaccumulate, in humans and other animals. These pollutants pose environmental challenges because they easily move between air, water and land and can be passed from one generation to the next. The Profiler was developed to help companies screen for the chemicals faster than traditional methods allow, choose safer chemical alternatives for use in new and existing products, and incorporate pollution prevention into the chemical development process.
"CMTI will work with chemical companies and other stakeholders to identify opportunities to apply the PBT Profiler," Corson said. "We will be attempting to reduce PBT loading in the Great Lakes, develop and disseminate case studies on practical applications of the Profiler, and help the EPA find ways to expand the Profiler's technical and risk screening capabilities."
The EPA developed the Profiler in conjunction with the American Chemistry Council, the Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association and the Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturer's Association with contributions from Environmental Defense. More than 120 chemical companies and other stakeholders participated in testing the Profiler, including DuPont, S.C. Johnson & Son Inc. and Eastman Kodak Co.
This most recent EPA grant was an amendment to a $100,000 grant awarded to CMTI last year.
The Indiana General Assembly created the institute (formerly the Indiana Pollution Prevention and Safe Materials Institute) in 1990. The institute acts as the state's focal point for coordinating and deploying technical assistance, outreach, education, planning services and research to facilitate the adoption of pollution prevention and clean manufacturing strategies by Indiana manufacturing facilities. CMTI currently focuses on priority manufacturing sectors such as wood products manufacturing, plastics including recreational vehicle manufacturing, plastics coating, metal plating and coating, motor vehicle parts manufacturing, and foundries.
Writer: Chad Boutin, (765) 494-2081, firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: Lynn Corson, (765) 463-4749, email@example.com
Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; firstname.lastname@example.org