Thursday, February 14, 2013

Fwd: $3.2 Million Awarded for Clean Air Projects 02.14.13

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From: "Northwest Clean Air Agency" <>
Date: Feb 14, 2013 4:25 PM
Subject: $3.2 Million Awarded for Clean Air Projects 02.14.13
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NWCAA awards $3.2 million for local clean air projects
Top scores given for greenhouse gas reductions
Feb. 14, 2013 - The Northwest Clean Air Agency will award $3.2 million to three local projects to improve and protect air quality, placing top priority on projects that reduce greenhouse gases.
NWCAA evaluated 15 project proposals according to five criteria: Potential greenhouse gas reduction, applicant's experience and past performance, achievable scope of work and proposed schedule, benefits within NWCAA's jurisdiction, and communications and public education.
The NWCAA Board of Directors today approved the agency to negotiate and manage contracts for:
  • $2 million to the Opportunity Council to expand its Community Energy Challenge program. The program involves outreach about the value of energy efficiency and reducing energy consumption, home and small business energy audits and weatherization, identifying and providing financial incentives and other resources to help pay for and facilitate energy efficiency upgrades, help selecting contractors and follow-up inspections. The program will reduce greenhouse gases by an estimated 2,747 metric tons a year, while supporting dozens of jobs in the three-county area.
  •  $760,000 to the city of Bellingham to install a small hydroelectric plant on the Bellingham waterfront using water from an existing water supply line that delivered up to 50 million gallons of water a day to the former Georgia-Pacific pulp and paper mill. The plant is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 1,881 metric tons a year, reduce flooding and erosion and improve fish habitat on Whatcom Creek, reduce sediment flowing through the city's water treatment plant, generate revenue for additional energy conservation projects, and employ engineers and contractors.
  •  $439,500 to the Washington State University Energy Program for a three-part program focused on local dairies: Providing energy assessments at dairy farms, training for conservation district staff, buying down the cost for energy efficiency upgrades at the Darigold milk-drying plant, and providing cash incentives to local farms or food delivery companies for converting two to three vehicles to run on compressed fuel produced at the Vander Haak Dairy. This proposal is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40,000 metric tons during the life of the project or roughly 2,000 metric tons per year.
"Selecting these projects was difficult because we had such an impressive field of applicants," said NWCAA Executive Director Mark Asmundson. "We were encouraged by the knowledge and creativity demonstrated by our community."
BP Cherry Point Refinery will provide the funding about six months after startup of a new ultra-low-sulfur diesel fuel process unit later this year. Although burning ultra-low-sulfur diesel in cars, trucks and buses reduces acid-rain-causing sulfur emissions, harmful particulates and ozone precursors, its production is expected to produce the equivalent of about 440,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas – a year.
"We applaud BP for taking steps to address some of its increased carbon emissions," Asmundson said. "While reducing greenhouse gases was our agency's top priority for these projects, our intention was not to find a one-to-one offset. Our evaluation took into account a variety of community benefits."

More information:
Northwest Clean Air Agency:
Summary of projects and their scores:

The Northwest Clean Air Agency is the regulatory agency responsible for ensuring compliance with federal, state and local air quality regulations in Island, Skagit and Whatcom counties. In addition to permitting and regulating industrial sources, the agency offers services that deal with asbestos, business assistance, climate change, indoor air quality, outdoor burning and wood stoves and fireplaces. More information about the agency is available at
Northwest Clean Air Agency:
Katie Skipper, Communications Director, office: 360-428-1617 ext. 235, mobile: 360-319-0739,

Mark Asmundson, Executive Director, 360-428-1617
Opportunity Council:
Shawn Collins, Community Energy Challenge Manager, 360-676-6099 ext. 131,
City of Bellingham:
Sam Shipp, P.E., Project Manager, 360-778-7942,
WSU Energy Program:
Sheila Riggs, Assistant Director, 360-956-2074
BP Cherry Point Refinery:
Bill Kidd, Director of Government Affairs, 360-371-1145,

1600 South Second Street | Mount Vernon, WA 98273-5202

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