On Thursday evening, April 19th, invited guests of the Michigan chapter of the Environmental Management Association (www.emaweb.org) had an opportunity to network, feast and learn about some special students and honor those companies making great strides in the industry.
This event brought together environmental management companies in Michigan and beyond for an evening of connecting and sharing ideas on how excelling in their industry is making our region a cleaner, safer and better managed environment.
During an initial networking period, guests had an opportunity to view three special science projects prepared by students at Detroit Country Day High School under the direction of Science Department Chairman and teacher, Gene Menton. Award winners for these projects included Chengzhen Dai whose science project covered “Bioluminescence and Toxicity: An Ecological Method for Detecting Aquatic Conta” and Brian Xu, whose science project was entitled “Magnetic Field Effects on Microalgae Growth for Biofuel Production”. However, the grand prize winner of the competition was Cody Liu, whose project was entitled: “Copper Induced Changes in Cell Regeneration Motor Neuron Function and Enzyme Biology Interest.” Trying saying that ten times !
The purpose of the project was to determine effects of copper on enzyme function, locomotive behavior and cell regeneration. The project was most impressive and had many in the audience shaking their heads with wonder on the complicated subject matter and terrific execution by the Country Day High School student. As was remarked at the awards ceremony, if Cody Liu is representative of the current generation of young enthusiastic science students ready to take on the scientific challenges of this century, then our country should be in great shape.
After a wonderful dinner, guests had an opportunity to hear from the evenings’ Master of Ceremonies, Kevin O’Mara, owner of Midwest Analytical Services, Inc. and Michigan Labs. The current Environmental Association President, Larry Russette, Director of Business Development at Vac-All Service Inc., an environmental response group, also presented remarks on behalf of the Environmental Management Association. Awards were also handed out to exemplary organizations that have significantly contributed to the regional environmental industry and are setting the pace for future growth and expansion in the industry.
One finalist at the event was Chrysler Tech Center, which has eliminated CTC waste from landfills and is working to eliminate all waste at Chrysler from landfills. The other finalist included Information Systems Resource, which supports e-waste programs and management solutions for very large local organizations and industries right here in southeast Michigan. However, the Environmental Achievement Award recipient for 2012 belonged to Hydrodec North America, LLC. Accepting on behalf of Hydrodec was Michael Pitcher, General Manager of Hydrodecs’ North American Operations.
Mr. Pitcher spoke on behalf of Hydrodec and showed a very short PowerPoint presentation describing the company’s’ role in taking used transformer oil and recycling it for reuse in transformers for utility companies. This patented process takes a byproduct that is difficult to safely dispose of (used transformer oil) and recycles transformer mineral oil into oil of the highest quality. Both the recycled product and company are a sustainable, environmentally sound and economically viable solution to any utility needing to resolve the dilemma of used transformer oil. Hydrodec is a publicly traded company and is looking for more sustainable solutions for other industries that may currently have unsustainable practices in the disposal of oils, solvents and liquids. Having only one plant in North America (Canton, OH) and the original plant in Australia, the company is well poised for growth and success in the environmental remediation space it now occupies.
All who were involved in planning the evening deserve praise as participants commented on this first class event. The event sponsor, Ryan Dunning of Civil and Environmental Consultants (www.cecinc.com) in Wixom, also deserve additional recognition for supporting this event and making it possible for participants to enjoy such a wonderful evening. Participants are eagerly awaiting next years’ rendition of the Environmental Management Associations’ Awards Dinner. It’s not too early to submit nominations for the 2012 Environmental Achievement Award and those nomination forms can be found on EMA’s website at www.emaweb.org. Good Luck Everyone !
ROBERT E. MATTLER, Associate Broker, Attorney and LEED AP BD+C, is Director of Green Brokerage at Armada Real Estate Services in West Bloomfield, Michigan. He speaks and writes about emerging green real estate issues in Michigan and elsewhere. For more information, contact Bob at Armada Real Estate (248) 855-1221; or by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org