Gelman Clean-Up by cuiliqing



Gelman Clean-up

This activity concerns the contamination of groundwater with 1,4-dioxane. Then Gelman
Sciences, Inc. (GSI), now Pall-Gelman Sciences, Inc. (PGSI), operated an on-site industrial
wastewater treatment system during the late 1970’s until sometime in the early 1980’s. As
result of the operation of this system, groundwater in the area of the PGSI facility on Wagner
Road in Scio Township was contaminated. From this area, a plume of contaminated
groundwater moved to near the intersection of Evergreen Drive and Dexter Road. Initially,
GSI installed a treatment system in this area to treat purged groundwater and discharged the
treated water to the City’s sanitary sewer system. An Industrial User Permit issued by the
Wastewater Treatment Plant regulated this discharge. This activity ceased several years ago.
Currently, the purged groundwater collected from this area is pumped to the PGSI facility,
treated and discharged to Honey Creek. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
regulates the current discharge.

Huron River Water Quality and Middle Huron Initiative

The City of Ann Arbor is a significant community partner in the Middle Huron Initiative, a
project coordinated by the Huron River Watershed Council. The City participates in the
partnership of 21 communities and agencies that steers the direction of Initiative

The overall goal of the project is to improve water quality in the middle Huron River by
rallying communities around reducing point and non-point sources of pollution, and
identifying pollution prevention strategies.

The Middle Huron Initiative presents an action plan for attaining federal and state water
quality standards through resource protection and pollution prevention. It includes
quantitative goals to reduce the loading of phosphorus by 50% in order to meet the Total
Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) set by the State; that is, 0.5 mg/L in Ford Lake and 0.3
mg/L in Belleville Lake. This goal is being pursued through specific strategies that have
been developed and implemented over the past 4 years by the partners to the Initiative.
The action plan calls for these strategies, in the aggregate, to aim for a 50 percent
reduction in the discharge of phosphorus to the middle Huron.

In general, the overall action plan calls for an initiative to:
w Improve monitoring and modeling of the basin for phosphorus sources;
w Support increased research and monitoring in the Huron;
w Support watershed education and planning efforts;
w Assist landowners to develop and implement best management practices to reduce
    phosphorus to the river;
w Upgrade sewage treatment facilities;
w Provide for changes in operation of wastewater treatment plants; and
w Provide a source of support to test innovative ideas to reduce phosphorus discharge
  to the Huron.

The Middle Huron River Initiative was developed in 1996 as a mechanism for generating
policy-based, prevention-oriented, scientifically sound solutions to the environmental
threats facing the watershed. Testing and implementation of those solutions have been
underway for four years.

Highlights of Middle Huron Partners’ Accomplishments

    -   First community-driven TMDL in the State of Michigan
    -   100,000+ people directly reached and 350,000+ people indirectly reached by
        Information and Education campaign
    -   $200,000+ placed into project by middle Huron communities to address education
        outreach, water quality management practices, and innovative policies
    -   $300,000 contributed by Pittsfield Township and City of Ann Arbor to urban stream
        restoration plan in Malletts Creek sub-basin
    -   Increased soil erosion control through Washtenaw County program
    -   Biological monitoring at 29 Adopt-A-Stream sites throughout middle Huron
    -   45+ partners in Washtenaw County’s Community Partners for Clean Streams
    -   Revised Drain Rules and their adoption by most communities
    -   Adoption of ordinances and policies by local communities to protect natural
        resources, including storm water ordinances and wetlands ordinances
    -   63+ acres of farmland in Mill Creek sub-basin converted to wildlife wetland habitat
    -   2,600+ agricultural acres with conservation practices including conservation tillage,
        nutrient management, filter strips, and other best management practices (BMPs)
    -   $270,000 + USDA funds supplied to farmers for BMPs in Mill Creek sub-basin
    -   Community discussions of potential dam removal/river restoration in Dexter
    -   Creation of Washtenaw County Septic System Inspection Program
    -   Scientific studies produced:
    §   Assessment of the Potential for Ecological Rehabilitation and Restoration in Mill
        Creek, M. Wiley & P. Seelbach
    §   Functional Assessment of Wetlands in the North Branch, Mill Creek, HRWC
    §   The Health of the Huron, M. Wiley
    §   Malletts Creek Restoration Project, Washtenaw County Drain Office
    §   Impervious Surface Reduction Study, Washtenaw County Drain Office

    Chemical monitoring of the river and the lakes has been conducted annually since 1994
    by the MDEQ to determine levels of multiple water quality parameters including total
    phosphorus, total nitrogen, and total dissolved sediments. Any trends in improved water
    quality will require several additional years of monitoring to generate a robust database.

    The Watershed Plan for the Huron River in the Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti Metropolitan Area
    advises continued implementation of the recommendations of the Middle Huron
    Initiative. The Initiative serves a crucial role as the multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional
    watershed management forum to implement plan recommendations and other
    watershed-based objectives for the planning area.

HRWC activities proposed in the work plan are derived from the 1996 strategy of the
Initiative, and adjusted for current concerns and needs expressed by the partners. These
activities complement the recommendations made in the Watershed Plan, especially in
the areas of education and community involvement, planning, regulations and policy,
interagency coordination, and monitoring and data collection.

The next two and one half years will require renewed commitment to the goals of the
Initiative by all partners in order to prepare for Phase II storm water permits which
become effective in March 2003, in addition to continuing current efforts.

Wastewater Treatment Plant

The City has filed a Petition for Contested Case Hearing for the National Pollutant Discharge
Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued December 19, 2000, which regulates the
discharge from the City’s Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP). The contested issue is the
permit phosphorus limits and how they were developed and implemented by the MDEQ.
Throughout the permit development process, the City has continued to express concerns
about the methodology used to develop phosphorus loadings, the costs for its WWTP to
achieve the phosphorus limits at current and future flows and the expected impact in Ford and
Belleville Lakes. While the contested case hearing proceeds, the WWTP continues to
participate in the voluntary agreement developed as part of Huron River Watershed Initiative
to limit its phosphorus discharge.

Malletts Creek Restoration Plan

Malletts Creek Restoration Plan was developed (to address the water quality problems
of the creekshed) to meet the MDEQ mandate to improve the biota of the creekshed and
50% phosphorus reduction in the Huron River, and structural repairs to prevent further
channel and bank erosions. The restoration plan was developed through a cooperative
effort of Washtenaw County Drain Commissioner (WCDC), City of Ann Arbor, Pittsfield
Township and residents of the creek shed. The Restoration Plan includes various
projects and efforts at an estimated cost of $19M to be completed over a number of
years. The restoration plan was accepted by the City Council and the Council directed
establishing a Malletts Creekshed Coordinating Committee (MCDC). Recently, the
Council appointed fifteen members to the MCDC and the members include
representatives from the City’s Building, Planning, Parks and Recreation, Public
Services and Water Utilities Departments, WCDC’s office, Malletts Creek Association,
Ann Arbor Township and Council members. The implementation of the restoration plan
is being coordinated through WCDC office. An action plan has also been developed for
first three years for restoration of the Mallets Creek. The action plan lists projects to be
undertaken, suggested timing, responsible parties and possible funding source. At the
end of third year an assessment will be performed to verify that the established goals are
met. MCDC will periodically evaluate the effectiveness of these projects and make
appropriate changes, if needed.

Millers Creek

The Millers Creek is one of the tributaries of the Huron River that runs alongside Huron
Parkway from Plymouth Road to the Huron River. Its watershed includes the City of Ann
Arbor, Ann Arbor Township and the University of Michigan. At present, the Millers Creek
is not under any governmental unit’s jurisdiction. As such no maintenance of the Millers
Creek is being performed, and has eroded bank and silt deposition at many locations. A

comprehensive assessment of maintenance needs should be completed and the Ann
Arbor Township, the City and the University of Michigan should share the expenses of
the comprehensive assessment.
Stormwater Detention

Changes were made in Chapter 63 of the City Code of Ordinances to address concerns
with stormwater detention.


Ann Arbor Area Clean Cities Program

The US Department of Energy’s Clean Cities Program was developed to encourage the use
of alternate fuel vehicles that reduce air pollution and reduce our reliance on non-renewable,
imported oil. The City’s Energy Office formed a coalition of local organizations to fulfill the
requirements for membership in the Clean Cities Program which included developing a
Program Plan to purchase alternate fuel vehicles, build alternate fuel infrastructure, and
educate the community about alternate fuel vehicles. This Program Plan was completed,
and the Ann Arbor area became an officially designated US Department of Energy Clean City
in April, 1999.

The coalition currently owns and operates over 380 alternate fuel vehicles including cars,
pickup trucks, and vans powered by natural gas, electricity, propane, biodiesel and ethanol.
The coalition hopes to double that in the next year or two. There are currently two public
natural gas fueling stations in Ann Arbor located at the Meijers on Ann Arbor Saline Rd and
the Meijers on Carpenter Rd. A third public fueling station, installed and operated by
MichCon, is being considered at the City Garage on Main St. In addition, there are 5 private
natural gas fueling stations, including one in the City Hall parking lot.

The coalition projects a that there will be over 600 alternate fuel vehicles on local roads by
the end of 2001 and, if they can achieve their ambitious goals, over 2,000 alternate fuel
vehicles in the Ann Arbor area in 2005. Goals for 2001-2002 include building a third public
compressed natural gas fueling station, building up to 3 area ethanol (E-85) fueling stations,
purchasing a “heavy-duty” alternate fuel vehicles (a refuse truck) and introducing low-speed
electric vehicles in the Ann Arbor area.

Low-speed electric vehicles became legal on Michigan roads with speed limits of 35 mph or
less in July 2000. These small electric vehicles are limited to a speeds of 25 mph but are
very cheap to operate (about 1 cent/mile), can carry up to 4 people and groceries, and are
easy to park due to their small size. Expected uses for them include replacing a second
family vehicle for running short in-town errands, providing handy transportation for utility
meter readers and parking enforcement officers, and providing in-town transportation for
local businesses and downtown workers.

The local Clean Cities program has attracted over $150,000 in federal and state grant funds.
Local expenditures on alternate fuel vehicles and fueling infrastructure in Ann Arbor have
topped $1,000,000.

The federal government is considering alternate fuel vehicle mandates for local government
and private fleets that could become effective for vehicle model year 2002.

The Ann Arbor Area Clean Cities Coalition Members:
City of Ann Arbor
Washtenaw County
Detroit Edison Company
Michigan Consolidated Gas Company
Ann Arbor Transportation Authority
University of Michigan
Eastern Michigan University
Ann Arbor Public Schools
US EPA - National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory
Mich Dept of Consumer and Industry Services – Energy Resources Division
Mich Dept of Environmental Quality - Air Quality Division
Ecology Center

Green Fleets Program.

In August 2000 City Council requested that the City formulate a Green Fleets Policy
modeled after the ICLEI recommendations. This program contains the following
      1. Using vehicles more efficiently - use the smallest, most efficient vehicle for the
          job. Optimize routes, walk, ride bicycles, or telecommute to reduce vehicle
          miles. Group tasks to accomplish more with one trip.
      2. Include minimum fuel efficiency requirements in bid specifications and use life
          cycle costing to evaluate vehicle bids.
          3. Inventory the fleet by vehicle type, fuel use, emissions and other suitable
          4. Establish clear goals to reduce fuel expenditures and emissions.
          5. Establish a plan to reach the goals and monitor progress.

A plan to accomplish these goals has been formulated and is being implemented.

Step 1: Establish a Green Fleets team (Energy Office, Public Works, Parks, Utilities,
           Solid Waste, Police & Fire)

Step 2: Produce inventory of vehicles and small engine machines. Include information on
           equipment replacement schedules. Obtain 3-year history of gasoline and
           diesel use.

Step 3:      Green Fleets Team determines clear reduction goals (% reduction in fuel
             use) based on inventory data, information on new, more efficient replacement
             vehicles and equipment, and information from other municipalities in Green
             Fleets program. Options include:

             Downsizing or eliminating vehicles

             Optimizing travel – reduce travel need, reduce mileage, substitute other travel
             Using fuel efficient or alternative fuel vehicles

Step 4     Produce a policy that includes clear steps to achieve the goals. Policy
           includes ongoing monitoring to ensure goals are achieved.

Energy Star Buildings

The City joined the EPA “Green Lights Program” by Council resolution in August 1995.
This was a program to retrofit existing lighting in City buildings with new, energy efficient
lighting. This program is now nearly complete with the installation of new lighting in over
20 City facilities. The next step in the EPA Program is Energy Star Buildings, which calls
for energy audits and improvements to building systems and envelopes. This program is
just getting underway.

Municipal Energy Fund

Since fiscal year 1998-99, Council has approved $100,000/yr for the Municipal Energy
Fund to be used to improve the energy efficiency of City facilities and provide community
demonstrations of energy saving and renewable energy technologies. Facilities that
receive energy saving improvements reimburse the Energy Fund by paying back 80% of
the energy savings each year for five years. The Energy Fund is managed by the City’s
Energy Office with decisions on projects to be funded made by a three-person board
assigned by the City’s Environmental Management Team
In FY1998-99 the fund financed $88,000 worth of projects at 16 facilities expected to
save $20,000/yr in energy costs. In FY1999-00 the fund financed $100,000 worth of
projects at 6 facilities expected to save $15,600/yr. This included $20,000 for a solar
demonstration at the Leslie Science Center. For FY 2000-01 $89,000 of projects include
the conversion of nearly 1,000 traffic signal lights to LED technology at a cost of $76,000
with energy and maintenance savings expected at $24,500/yr. Also, a lighting
retrofit/improvement project is underway at the City Garage. Additional projects are
being considered for FY 2000-01.
Annual facility reimbursements to the fund are $16,262 from FY98-99 projects (first
payments made at the end of FY99-00), $14,556 from FY99-00 projects, and expected
minimum of $19,650 from FY00-01 projects. This innovative fund, which was chosen as
a national finalist in the US Conference of Mayors’ “City Livability Awards Program”, is
expected to become self-sufficient (no additional funding necessary) after FY 2002-03.

From the MDEQ 1999 Air Quality Report for Michigan:

Ozone is a colorless gas that is formed from photochemical reactions between nitrogen
oxides and volatile organic compounds (VOC) or hydrocarbons. Sunlight initiates the
complex sequence of photolytical reactions. In addition to the formation of ozone, these
reactions form many other products which, combined with ozone, are called
photochemical smog. The ozone that is contained in smog is close to ground level and is
also known as “tropospheric” or ground level ozone.

Ozone irritates the respiratory system and can cause coughing and chest pains upon
deep inspiration. People who are exercising have an increased ventilation rate and,
hence, are more susceptible to the effects of ozone. According to the EPA, 90% of
inhaled ozone is never exhaled. Lung inflammation, increased susceptibility to
respiratory infection, aggravation of preexisting diseases such as asthma often are
associated with ozone exposure.

Other effects caused by elevated ozone levels include deterioration of rubber, dyes,
paints, and fabrics. Some plants such as white pine, wheat, tomatoes, milkweeds,
soybeans, and alfalfa are especially sensitive to ozone and show damage at low levels.
Ozone can cause decreased agricultural crop and forest yields, reduced viability of
forest seedlings, increased susceptibility to disease and stress impacting forest
ecosystems, and an impact on habitat quality for wildlife.

On July 18, 1997, the EPA revised several aspects of the ozone standard. The form of
the standard changed from a 1-hour to an 8-hour averaging period and reduced the
allowable level of ozone from 0.12 ppm to 0.08 ppm for both the primary and secondary
standards. The concept of exceedance-based standard was dropped, and the fourth
highest 8-hour average was substituted. To meet the new standard, the annual fourth
highest 8-hour average ozone concentration, when averaged with the values from the
two previous years, must equal or is less than 0.08 ppm.

Earlier this year, the US Supreme Court upheld the new ozone rule, but rejected the
implementation plan for it. The EPA is currently revising that implementation rule.

Under the new standard, Ann Arbor is barely in attainment. Since 1992 our 3-year
averages of fourth highest values have been above .08 ppb, but due to truncation and
rounding our value for attainment calculations has been at .08 ppb. Last year was better
than average for low ozone levels, producing few ozone action days and a 4th highest 8-
hour ozone level of .078 ppb. This gave us a truncated 3-year average of .084 ppb,
which also rounds to an acceptable .08 ppb.

Since the average of the last two years has been .085 ppb, this year could result in our
being pushed into non-attainment depending largely on weather conditions and
emissions of ozone precursors.

                                Ann Arbor Area Average Ozone Values

  Ozone, ppb

                                                                                   3 Year Average
                                                                                   Rounded Value
                       1994   1995   1996   1997   1998     1999     2000

Cities for Climate Protection Program

City Council voted to join the Cities for Climate Protection Campaign October 20, 1997.
The Cities for Climate Protection Campaign is a project of the International Council for
Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI), an association of over 300 local governments
from around the world dedicated to developing sustainable community-based solutions
to local and global environmental problems. The Climate Protection Campaign helps
local governments implement policies and measures that reduce global warming
pollution, improve air quality and enhance communities. There are currently 68 cities in
the US that have joined the Cities for Climate Protection Program. (For more information
check their website at

The City has completed its initial inventory of global warming emissions both from the
community as a whole and from just City government operations using 1995 as the
baseline year. Results show total community emissions of 1,767,563 tons of equivalent
CO2, which breaks down to 477,800 tons from residential, 870,000 tons from
commercial, 405,000 tons from transportation, and 15,516 tons from waste (this number
is low because of our successful recycling program). City operations contribute 58,000
tons of the total emissions. Over 80% of the municipal government contributions to
global warming come from energy use.

These baseline estimates, particularly the estimate for transportation contribution, may
be substantially revised in the future. The estimate for transportation emissions is
actually an estimate of emissions based on personal vehicles registered in Ann Arbor.
The estimation method did not include aircraft, buses, trains, commercial trucks, or non-
resident employee commute trips. It also makes no attempt to include the freeways
within city limits or attribute non-local transportation of goods to Ann Arbor as
transportation emissions. Since sources indicate that Ann Arbor residents both own
fewer vehicles per capita than average and drive fewer miles per capita than average, it
is unlikely that the total transportation greenhouse-gas emissions from Ann Arbor
resident’s vehicles is an adequate estimation of total transportation greenhouse gas
emissions for Ann Arbor.

The Environmental Commission will consider improvements to this emission estimate in
the future.

It is worth noting that the national average percentage for greenhouse gas emissions
from transportation is approximately 33% of the total national greenhouse gas
emissions.      This estimate suggests that Ann Arbor residents are producing
approximately 22% of their greenhouse gas emissions from transportation in
comparison. This indicates that Ann Arbor residents are taking advantage of less-
polluting forms of transportation such as walking, bicycling, and taking public transit
more than the average American. This is good sign and should be encouraged further.

Ann Arbor has an Energy Plan to reduce energy use and encourage renewable energy
where feasible, a Solid Waste Plan, which encourages recycling, composting, and
source reduction, and a Transportation Plan that includes reducing traffic congestion and
vehicle miles traveled through the implementation of mass transit and alternate
transportation programs. These programs not only conserve natural resources and
protect our air and water, but also help reduce community global warming emissions.

The Landfill Gas to Energy project financed by private investors has burned nearly 900
million cu. ft. of landfill gas from, 9/96 - 12/99, saving over 170,000 tons of CO2
equivalent. Also the project has generated 20,000 MWH of electricity (sold to Detroit
Edison for nearly $1,000,000) and saved another 700 tons CO2 equivalent from
avoided, primarily coal fired electric generation.

The next step in this program is to create a global warming emission reduction plan for
the City and the community that will include a target reduction percentage (probably
around 10%).

Alternate Transportation Program

Growing parking and traffic congestion issues in downtown Ann Arbor were brought to a
head with the recent program for repair and replacement of parking structures. As part
of the approval for the $40 million parking structure renovation program, City Council
requested that alternatives to increased parking demand be examined. Under the lead
of the Energy Office, representatives from the City of Ann Arbor, the Downtown
Development Authority, and Ann Arbor Transportation Authority evaluated City policies
for parking incentives, transit incentives, carpooling, biking, flex time and the use of City
vehicles. This group produced the “Transportation/Parking Options Report” in October,
1998, which provided two central recommendations; the hiring of a full time
Transportation Coordinator and a program to provide free bus passes to all downtown
These recommendations have been implemented through the creation of the
“getDowntown” program. The Chamber of Commerce joined the existing team and has
employed a full time Alternate Transportation Coordinator since August 1999. A
program of free bus passes (go!pass) for downtown employees started in the fall of 1999
funded by a federal CMAQ grant and contributions from the partners. Grant funding is in
place to employ the Alternate Transportation Coordinator through 2003, and a recent
approval of $175,000 by the DDA will extend the “free” go!pass program at least through
June, 2002. The getDowntown Program promotes a variety of alternative commuting
options and manages the go!pass program which currently has over 480 participating
businesses and over 11,000 go!pass holders.
A recent grant application to the EPA is attempting to initiate a pilot program of 8 small
electric “station” cars which would be available for use in the downtown area by persons
and businesses active in the go!pass program.


Ongoing Habitat Restoration efforts

Parks and Recreation restores park areas in new park developments where the
environment is degraded and attempt to improve the plant community diversity. We
utilize native plants in park developments and avoid invasive species. We are taking
more areas out of turf to decrease mowing and naturalizing areas that aren’t used for
active sports.

Green and Clean Design

In both new park developments and renovation of existing facilities, we incorporate
environmentally sustainable materials and energy efficient designs. A recent example is
the Leslie Science Center; a new facility where we incorporated passive solar heating,
photovoltaics, recycled building materials, a greywater cleansing system and composting
toilets. We are making a concerted effort to try new products that fit with the mission of
green and clean design.

Water Quality

The Parks and Recreation Department has been experimenting with alternative
stormwater management in several areas and plans to expand this practice. Stabilization
of shorelines along the Huron River, tributaries and lakes also helps to curtail erosion
and improve water quality. We are mowing less at the waters edge to decrease runoff
into the water, and have a program in place to control the goose population.

Better Storm Water Management on Park Sites

We are making a concerted effort to incorporate stormwater management with park
developments. At Northeast Area Park, we will be installing a demonstration of several
stormwater management techniques that will provide a learning tool for developers,
engineers and students as well as the casual visitor to the site. Where feasible, we are
incorporating detention basins with native plant communities to contain water on site
without connecting to the storm drain system.

Parkland Acquisition

With the renewal of the Park Acquisition Millage, we are actively pursuing
environmentally significant land for incorporation into the park system. In addition to
purchasing land, we request that developers dedicate a portion of the land for public
open space. Three significant parcels have been acquired; Scarlett Mitchell Woods
addition, Bluffs Park addition and Redbud Nature Area. Two of the three include State
matching grants.

Greenway Development

Securing land along the rivers and streams as well as significant woodlands and
wetlands provides corridors for non-motorized transportation as well as continuous
wildlife habitat. This practice partnered with parkland acquisition provides the park
system with open space linkages that unify and connect the green spaces throughout
the City.


Urban Infill Development

The City master plan supports the use of sensitive “infill” development as a way to
provide new housing opportunities in the City. Infill development is new housing or other
buildings on scattered vacant sites in a built-up area. Recently, infill development has
been discussed as a strategy to counter urban sprawl, by providing new housing
opportunities where urban services are readily available at a density that supports

transit. In reviewing site plans and land divisions, Planning Commission and staff seek
to find ways to ensure infill development is designed to integrate into the existing
neighborhood. The Commission and staff also are working to revise zoning regulations
to support new opportunities for infill development, such as accessory apartments in
single-family homes.

Sustainable Density

While no residential density has been definitively established as “sustainable,” the
Planning Commission balances a number of criteria to determine if the proposed
development uses land efficiently, provides cost-effective infrastructure and minimizes
the impact on the environment. Some of the things the Commission considers are
whether the development contributes to the City’s housing diversity, minimizes the need
for auto travel, supports efficient transit service, provides recreational opportunities, has
access to goods and services, protects significant natural features, limits storm water
run-off impacts and does not negatively impact public utility systems. The current
Northeast Area Plan effort has included discussions about sustainable land use and
density in its evaluation of large undeveloped sites within the area. The Northeast Area
Plan effort will continue into the next fiscal year, using these land use recommendations
as a part of a comprehensive study of transportation systems for the area.

Brownfield Development

In response to a request by the Environmental Management Team, the Planning
Department has created a map of sites within the City containing known and suspected
environmental contamination. In anticipation of the City’s involvement in a brownfield
authority, Planning staff is gathering background information on the sites, where
available, to provide a source of information to potential developers. Planning staff will
work with other departments to identify site development and infrastructure issues in any
brownfield redevelopment proposal.

Transportation Alternatives

Since the adoption of the Transportation Plan Update as part of the City master plan in
1990, the City, University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority have
been developing strategies to improve transportation options for the community.
Examples include the getDowntown program supporting commuting options in the
downtown, alternative fuel vehicle fleets, traffic calming initiatives, sidewalk and bicycle
route gap construction and “universal access” transit proposals for UM students. The
Northeast Area Transportation Plan, to start in June 2001, will use an innovative multi-
model approach to transportation planning for a high growth area of the City.


Floodplain Management
The City currently participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), by
adoption of Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM). Floodplain regulation is currently
handled by a combination of a Floodplain Management Resolution (Nov. 1991), parts of
Chapter 57, local Building Code requirements, and State Law. City Council passed
resolution R-181-4-99 on April 5, 1999 requesting staff to develop a floodplain
management ordinance. However the scope of desired regulations have not been
defined, and thus an ordinance has not been drafted yet. Staff will be recommending to

City Council that a committee be formed to define the scope of the requested floodplain
management ordinance.

Implementation of Storm Water revisions to Chapter 63
Chapter 63 was revised and put into effect in June 2000. This code revision was drafted
at the direction of City Council resolution R-181-4-99 passed on April 5, 1999. The main
goal of the revision was to bring the City storm water requirements in line with the Rules
of the Washtenaw County Drain Commissioner, which addresses both water quality and

A small number of local developers have held a series of meetings with City Staff to
express their concerns with the revised storm water management requirements. Staff
will be recommending several minor revisions to Chapter 63 to address some of the
concerns expressed.

Participation in Implementation of the Malletts Creek Restoration Plan
The Malletts Creek Restoration Plan was completed in April 2000. Some of the
recommendations of that plan were used in the revision to Chapter 63 in June 2000.
The Washtenaw County Drain Commissioner has hired a full time position to take the
lead in the implementation of the Restoration Plan.

Natural Features Ordinance implementation
The last revision to the City’s natural features requirements (mostly found in Chapter 57)
was done in 1996. The requirements have been being implemented since that time.
The Natural Features Ordinance Committee, that created the most recent changes, still
exists and is working on future natural features regulation changes.

Soil Erosion Control / Chapter 63
This code was revised in June 2000 at the direction of City Council resolution R-181-4-
99 passed on April 5, 1999. The main goal of the revision was to bring the City storm
water requirements in line with the Rules of the Washtenaw County Drain
Commissioner, which addresses both water quality and quantity. Additionally, the
organization of the entire ordinance was changed to flow better; many minor revisions
were made throughout to bring the soil erosion control requirements in line with current
State law, and eliminate conflicts with other City codes; and the enforcement section
was revised to include civil penalties if permit conditions are violated. However, the
state Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Control Act was amended this year making it
necessary for some minor revisions to Chapter 63. Staff will be working on those
revisions later this year.

Invasive species
With the adoption of Chapter 60 (the City’s Wetland Preservation Ordinance) in 1994,
City Staff was required to create and maintain an Invasive Species List. After
conducting a survey of the States most prominent Botanist and Environmental
Professionals a list of 121 invasive species was created in February 1996. The list was
revised in February 1999. Several plants were taken off the list and several plants were
added for a total of 122 species. Also the plants were split into 4 categories. Since
creating the list, Chapter 57 was revised to incorporate the Invasive Species List into
several areas of the natural features protection requirements. This year, Staff intends to
propose a code amendment to Chapter 62 (Landscaping and Screening) to further
restrict the use of plants included on the Invasive Species List.


Hazardous materials management requires a two-tiered response system, 1) the
EMD/LEPC for non-emergency regulation enforcement and 2) the City of Ann Arbor Fire
Department Hazardous Material Team (HazMat Team) for emergency response. The
EMD/LEPC makes sure that the required sites file the proper paperwork and emergency
response plans. Currently there are eight Superfund Amendment and Reauthorization
Act of 1986 (SARA Title III) sites in the City and numerous Tier II sites. The EMD/LEPC
works closely with the Washtenaw County Local Emergency Planning Commission
(WCLEPC) to educate manufacturer, chemical transportation companies and general
citizens about chemical safety. This would also include programs like “Community
Right-to-Know” and “Fire Fighter Right-to-Know” laws.

The City of Ann Arbor Fire Department HazMat Team responds and handles most
hazardous materials incidents in the City. The City of Ann Arbor HazMat Team became
response ready on January 1, 2000 and is a Technician level response team. During
the first year the team responded to 25 incidents, five of the incidents required full team
activation, while the majority only required technical assistance from the teams director
or his representatives. The primary responsibilities of the HazMat Team are: life safety,
property conservation and incident stabilization. This means that the team will use
methods to mitigate and control the situation until a private clean up company can be
notified. Once the private clean up company arrives on the scene, the HazMat Team
Director and EMD Director assures that the clean up is completed correctly and safely.

January of 2000, the City of Ann Arbor Fire Department Hazardous Materials Team was
selected out of 200 HazMat teams state-wide to become one of thirteen Michigan State
Police/Emergency Management Division Regional Response Team Network members.


The City of Ann Arbor has separate sanitary and storm sewer systems i.e. in the streets
there are two sewer pipes one for sanitary sewage and the other for storm water. The
Water Utilities Department operates and maintains the sewers mains for both systems.
Property owners are responsible for maintenance of service leads. Occasionally there
are service leads that are connected to the storm water system that are not currently
permitted to be connected to the storm water system. At the time of the service
construction the connection may have been allowed and now is not. An example is a
floor drain from a garage floor. Also, there may be services that have been mistakenly
connected to the storm water system and not the sanitary. These improper connections
are known as illicit connections. At present, whenever the Water Utilities Department’s
crews find such illicit connection, the service lead is disconnected from the storm sewer.
In future, the Water Utilities Department may start actively searching such service lead
connections, a very labor-intensive process.


Site Remediation for the Underground Storage Tanks
721 N. Main - UST Remediation:

This project consisted of the cleanup of the contamination related to leaking
underground fuel storage tanks at the City Maintenance Garage, 721 N. Main Street.
Two tanks were removed in the early 1990's. In 1994, NTH Consultants was hired by
the City to design and implement a remediation system for the cleanup of the
surrounding soil and groundwater. The system operated until 1999. In January 2000,
the MDEQ certified that the site was successfully cleaned to unrestricted residential
standards. All remediation buildings and wells have been properly abandoned and the
project is closed.

415 W. Washington - UST Remediation:
This project consists of the cleanup of contamination related to leaking underground fuel
storage tanks at the Parks & Recreation Garage, 415 W. Washington. Two tanks were
removed in the early 1990's. In 1994, NTH Consultants was hired by the City to design
and implement a remediation system for cleanup of the surrounding soil and
groundwater. The remediation system is currently in place and in operation. The work
will continue until the monitoring results demonstrate that groundwater has been cleaned
to the required residential cleanup standards.
Design Issues for the Storm Retention as Part of Road Improvements

Perhaps the greatest challenge for the design and construction of new storm retention
basins within the public right of way and in the developed areas is the lack of space for
the placement of the retention basin. For the most parts, the public ROW hosts to many
other necessary functions including the road pavements, bicycle paths, sidewalks, above
ground utilities and so on. The conventional storm retention basins require relatively
wide, deep and large spaces within the lower parts of a road. To overcome the
difficulties with the lack of space, on the experimental basis and to the extent possible,
the designers have turned to the underground retention basins. For now, the design of a
properly sized storm retention basin seems to continue to be a challenge for the
designers and the financiers of the projects.

Alternative De-Icing Applications for the Roads and Highways

In response to the City Council inquiries, in October 1997, the Public Services
Department completed a study entitled “Evaluation of Salt and Alternative Deicing
Agents.” The study was based on literature search, actual tests or past working
experience by others, in an attempt to identify the most effective, environmental friendly
procedure for making the roads safer during the winter storms. The report included the
study of de-icing agents such as Salt, Calcium Chloride, Magnesium Chloride, Calcium
Magnesium Acetate and Sand. Every method had some advantages over the others,
but each had its own drawbacks. In conclusion, it was determined that none of the
available de-icing methods could offer an overall distinct advantage and salt remains the
most cost effective de-icer.

               Current Events in Washtenaw County, MI
                          (and other places)
Date   Event               Location                  Sponsor

                           Time: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
                           Place: Ypsilanti Fire
                           222 South Ford Blvd.
                           Cost: FREE                Michigan
       Groundwater         This workshop will
June                                                 Stewardship Program
       Education           discuss well and
19                                                   and Washtenaw
       Workshop            septic system issues      County Environmental
                           and the County's Time     Health Division
                           of Sale regulation. For
                           more information, call
                           (734) 971-4542 ext.

       Council for Local                             International Council
June   Environmental       Ann Arbor, MI             for Local
20-    Initiatives North   Location to be            Environmental
23rd   American RIO +10    determined                Initiatives (ICLEI)

                           Main Street, Ann
                           6:00-9:00 p.m.
                           Main Street in Ann
                           Arbor will be closed      City of Ann Arbor in
June                       from 5:00-10:00 p.m.
       Green Fair                                    coordination with the
22                         that evening for the
                                                     ICLEI conference
                           Displays/booths of
                           local environmental
                           organizations will be

         Dr. Theo Colborn     Time: 7 o'clock p.m.
                                                        Sponsored by
        Endocrine             Place: Grosse Pointe
July 12 Disruption: Lessons   War Memorial, 32
                              Lake Shore Drive          For more information
        from the Great
        Lakes                 Cost: $5.00

                              8:30 – 10:30 a.m.
        Washtenaw             Library Learning and
        County Brownfield     Resource Center,
July 13                                                 Open to the public
        Redevelopment         Room B. Washtenaw
        Authority             County Service
                              Center, Hogback Rd.

                              Time: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
                              Place: Salem
                              Township Hall
                              9600 6 Mile Rd.
                              Cost: FREE                Groundwater
                              This workshop will        Stewardship Program
July 17 Education
                              discuss well and          and Washtenaw
                              septic system issues      County Environmental
                              and the County's Time     Health Division
                              of Sale regulation. For
                              more information, call
                              (734) 971-4542 ext.

                              Time: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
                              Place: Dexter Town
                              Hall                      Michigan
                              6880 Dexter/Pickney
        Groundwater           Rd.
                                                        Stewardship Program
July 31 Education
                              Cost: FREE                and Washtenaw
                                                        County Environmental
                              This workshop will        Health Division
                              discuss well and
                              septic system issues
                              and the County's Time

                             of Sale regulation. For
                             more information, call
                             (734) 971-4542 ext.

                             8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
         Washtenaw           Library Learning and
August   County Brownfield   Resource Center,
                                                       Open to the public
3        Redevelopment       Room B. Washtenaw
         Authority           County Service
                             Center, Hogback Rd.

                             Time: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
                             Place: Chelsea
                             500 Washington St.,
                             Washington Street
                             Education Center, 100
                             building, in the Board
                             Room                      Michigan
August                       Cost: FREE                Stewardship Program
7                                                      and Washtenaw
         Workshop            This workshop will        County Environmental
                             discuss well and          Health Division
                             septic system issues
                             and the County's Time
                             of Sale regulation. For
                             more information, call
                             (734) 971-4542 ext.

                             Time: 7:00-9:00 p.m.
                             Place: Saline Library
                             555 North Maple Rd.       Michigan
                             Cost: FREE                Groundwater
August                                                 Stewardship Program
         Education           This workshop will
28                                                     and Washtenaw
         Workshop            discuss well and          County Environmental
                             septic system issues      Health Division
                             and the County's Time
                             of Sale regulation. For
                             more information call

                               (734) 971-4542 ext.

                               8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
         Washtenaw             Library Learning and
Sept.    County Brownfield     Resource Center,
                                                       Open to the public
14       Redevelopment         Room B. Washtenaw
         Authority             County Service
                               Center, Hogback Rd.

                                                       For more information,
                                                       visit the National
         National Recycling
Sept.                                                  Recycling Coalition's
         Coalition Congress,
30-                                                    web site
         "2001: A              Seattle, Washington
May                                                    (http://www.nrc-
4th                                           or call
                                                       them at 703-683-

                               8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
         Washtenaw             Library Learning and
Oct.     County Brownfield     Resource Center,
                                                       Open to the public
12       Redevelopment         Room B. Washtenaw
         Authority             County Service
                               Center, Hogback Rd.

                               8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
         Washtenaw             Library Learning and
         County Brownfield     Resource Center,
Nov. 9                                                 Open to the public
         Redevelopment         Room B. Washtenaw
         Authority             County Service
                               Center, Hogback Rd.

                               8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
         Washtenaw             Library Learning and
Dec.     County Brownfield     Resource Center,
                                                       Open to the public
14       Redevelopment         Room B. Washtenaw
         Authority             County Service
                               Center, Hogback Rd.

You can also link to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality Calendar,
published every two weeks on-line. Also visit the Local Emergency Planning
Committee's Current Events page. Or, visit the sites listed below under
Environmental Links. Many local environmental organizations sponsor events.

                                  Current Issues
    We have information on the following current issues:
       ·   Arsenic in well water? For information on getting your drinking water
           tested, visit: Drinking Water Testing Fees.

       ·   The Environmental Quality company has proposed plans for an
           alternative development for the Arkona Road landfill property near
           Milan. A map of the proposed development is on line.

       ·   The Ecology Center of Ann Arbor homepage includes links to
           information on hormone disrupters.

       ·   Sustainable Washtenaw.
    We will be adding information on other issues. Unfortunately, Michigan Live
    discontinued providing archives of Ann Arbor News articles online, so we
    cannot provide links to past articles any longer.

This Week on Issues of the Environment
     Issues of the Environment is a weekly radio show on WEMU 89.1 FM, 8:20-
     8:30 AM Wednesdays.
    This week's (6/13) guest is the City of Ann Arbor's Mayor John Heiftje. Mayor
    Heiftje will be discussing the City of Ann Arbor's involvement in the upcoming
    International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives' (ICLEI) RIO +10
    Preparatory Conference.
    If you have suggestions for speakers, please let us know.

Links to Environmental Organizations
    Many of the organizations listed below host seminars, meetings, forums and more.
    Please link to their sites for information on current events.
    Chemical Scorecard
    A chemical information service provided by the Environmental Defense Fund. You can
    find information on local pollution emissions and the health effects of chemicals. The
    database is searchable by zip code.

    City of Ann Arbor Solid Waste Department
    Information on composting and recycling within Ann Arbor.

    Ecology Center of Ann Arbor
    Programs include environmental justice, environmental education, the Michigan
    Environmental Health Coalition, and more. Includes links to sites on hormone disrupters.

    Environment Infocenter of the Huron Valley Community Network (HVCN)
    The Infocenter includes an interactive discussion forum on current environmental issues,
    where you may participate in a community discussion on these issues. It also contains
    links to other environmental organizations and the HVCN community calendar.

    United States Environmental Protection Agency

Farm/Home A Syst, an informational source for homeowners, farmers and others. For
local information, contact the Natural Resources Conservation Service at 761-6722.

Great Lakes Information Network (GLIN)
GLIN provides a wealth of on-line resources relevant for the Great Lakes region.

Great Lakes Natural Resource Center
This Center, a project of the National Wildlife Federation, contains information on issues
important to the Great Lakes environment.

Great Lakes Radio Consortium (GLRC)
Listen to GLRC radio shows on-line!

Huron Land Use Alliance
An organization addressing issues of urban sprawl, planning, and land conservation.

Huron River Watershed Council
The Council is coalition of citizens and Huron Valley communities. The mission is to
inspire attitudes, behaviors, and economies that protect, rehabilitate, and sustain the
Huron River System. Programs include Adopt-a-Stream, pollution prevention, and
watershed protection.

Huron Valley Greens
The third Sunday of every month the Huron Valley Greens political party host a
presentation/video/guest speaker on a relevant topic.

Ann Arbor Area League of Women Voters includes a natural resources subcommittee
that sponsors a variety of events and projects.
Michigan Environmental Council (MEC)
MEC is a Coalition representing a variety of local environmental organizations and works
primarily on state-level environmental issues.
Michigan Department of Community Health
Lists information on many of the possible hazardous exposures found in the

Michigan Legislature
Search state level bills by category, read the full text, find out their history and current

Michigan Live
Hosts a database of contaminated sites around Michigan.

Michigan Natural Areas Council
The Michigan Natural Areas Council is dedicated to the preservation of natural areas of
outstanding scenic beauty or scientific value that are representative of the full value of
the state of Michigan's natural wealth.
Michigan Recycling Coalition
A non-profit organization to promote recycling throughout Michigan.
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality recycling information

National Recycling Coalition (NRC)
A non-profit organization that strives to promote recycling throughout the country.

Public Interest Research Group in Michigan (PIRGIM)
PIRGIM is a grass roots, non-profit, non-partisan environmental and consumer watchdog

Recycle Ann Arbor
Includes the en-house and reuse center.

Right To Know Network
Did you ever wonder how many pounds of toxic waste are produced each year in your
community? Right to Know Net offers a searchable database of this information.

Sierra Club Huron Valley Group
The Sierra Club is a non-profit member supported, public interest organization that
promotes conservation of the natural environment by influencing public policy decisions--
legislative, administrative, legal, and electoral.

The Natural Step (TNS)
TNS promotes and provides training on sustainability.

University of Michigan Nichols Arboretum
The second Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to noon the Arboretum has a workday
to clear invasive plants.

University of Michigan School of Natural Resources and Environment
SNRE provides undergraduate and graduate education on a large variety of
environmental topics. Their website includes a current events page, resources available,
academic programs, and more.

The Wet Meadow Project grew from children's concerns about the environment. Children
from Blossom Home Preschool and throughout the surrounding neighborhoods have
been active in the Huron River Watershed Council's Adopt-A-Stream program. From
observations and measurements, they noticed how Mallet's Creek is harmed by
excessive stormwater runoff. Children also noticed soil erosion and other drainage
problems at Buhr Park. They came up with a solution that will improve both the park and
the creek. Children have been important in planning, publicizing and building the wet
meadow, and will help to care for it.

Where You Live, a project by the Environmental Working Group, includes information on
drinking water quality violations (by state or by county); employment, income and
population statistics (by state); information on large toxic discharges to water from the
Toxic Release Inventory (by state or by county), and more.

                                University of Michigan
                         2001 State of the Environment Report
                               for the City of Ann Arbor

The University of Michigan considers environmental stewardship a normal part of our
activities in our community. Student, staff, and faculty involvement are an integral part of
environmental stewardship on campus.           Over the last several years we have
implemented some very successful programs including:

   ·   energy conservation
   ·   pollution prevention and waste reduction
   ·   recycling
   ·   incorporating the principals of environmental sustainability in purchasing and
       building designs.

This report describes many of the programs that have been implemented and what
future plans are being developed to identify other areas for improvement.

The responsibility of being a good steward of our environment goes well beyond just a
few dedicated staff. It requires a collaborative effort of all members of the University
community including students, faculty, and staff. The University’s Facilities and
Operations have had many successful projects through collaboration with the School of
Natural Resources, School of Public Health, and College of Engineering. Facilities and
Operations staff have also met with the Michigan Student Assembly to discuss
opportunities for broadening student involvement. In order for these projects to succeed
there must be involvement by all members of the University community.


In 1998, the United States Environmental Protection Agency assistant administrator
presented an Energy Star award to the University for an energy conservation project at
the Hatcher Library. As our pilot project, the library was used to perfect the techniques
for fine-tuning electrical and mechanical systems in our facilities. The project also
provided a great opportunity for student involvement. Sixteen graduate engineering
students took advantage of this opportunity to practice what was learned in the

classroom – providing a jumpstart on their careers. This is just one of many recognitions
the University has received over the last several years.

When people think about energy at the University, the most visible image is the Central
Power Plant. The University began a ten-year program in the 1950s to convert from
using coal to using much cleaner burning natural gas. A short time later the plant
became a co-generation facility where electricity is generated from excess steam. In the
co-generation process the primary function of the plant is to make steam for heating and
cooling facilities; the generation of electricity from the excess steam is a secondary

Today, we are the beneficiaries of those actions – in both cleaner air and more efficient
operation. Burning natural gas produces no sulfur dioxide and approximately half the
level of carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides, when compared to coal burning plants. Not
only is the natural gas cleaner to burn, but also it is more economical because it requires
less costly pollution control equipment. The University currently produces 42% of the
energy used on campus through steam production. The secondary benefit of co-
generation saves 170 million kWh annually.

With increasing fuel costs and the desire to minimize environmental impact, energy
conservation is extremely important. Energy Star is a program that evaluates and fine-
tunes building systems to maximize efficient operation. University staff have been
working on these programs for years, and the importance has really grown as fuel costs
have skyrocketed. As a result of the Energy Star program, direct digital controls and
energy efficient motors have been installed in heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning
systems as well as in research laboratory fume hoods.

The second key energy conservation program at the University is ‘Green Lights,’ a
program focusing on the replacement of inefficient lighting systems across campus. The
project initially started in the hospital, expanded to include housing, and has now spread
to include other facilities on campus. In addition to replacing the bulbs and ballasts,
occupancy sensors are installed to automatically turn the lights on and off in rooms.
In fiscal year 2000 we completed Energy Star and Green Lights renovations in excess of
2 million square feet of building space. These two programs have saved the University
over 25 million kWh annually, which is equivalent to the power usage of 1600 average
sized homes in Washtenaw county. This is a relatively significant amount of power
saved, however, remodeling has offset some of these savings and the changing
program needs in the schools and colleges. This correlates to increased research
activity, longer operating hours in some buildings and the addition of air conditioning
systems. Some buildings are actually using more energy. In these instances, the efforts
are along the lines of cost avoidance rather than cost reduction. If the Energy Star or
Green Lights projects were not implemented, the cost of operation would be even
higher. On average these programs have resulted in a 10% reduction in the amount of
energy required by the University.

The University of Michigan has also received the EPA Energy Honors and DOE National
Efficiency Renewable Energy Awards. While there is a cost for doing this work, it does
make good business sense. Until now the University of Michigan has been working on a
3-5 year return on investment for these projects. With recent increases in the cost of
energy, that has probably dropped considerably and the program is being re-evaluated
to see if a longer payback period is acceptable.

With the assistance of Detroit-Edison, we now participate in retail wheeling, under which
we can purchase energy from a number of suppliers and have it transmitted through the
Detroit-Edison distribution grid. As a condition of this program, Ann Arbor required
franchise agreements that specify 3% of all energy purchased for use within the city
must come from renewable resources such as hydroelectric, solar or wind power. The
University recently surpassed this goal, securing 5.5% of renewable energy under our
new contract.


Lights Bulbs and Ballasts

Implementing the Green Lights program generates waste materials as the inefficient
equipment is replaced. Both the bulbs and the ballasts contain materials that require special
disposal or recycling. Each fluorescent tube contains a small quantity of mercury. By
recycling 140,000 light bulbs annually, approximately 11 pounds of mercury are removed from
the waste stream. Recycling the items meets the regulatory disposal requirements in a more
environmentally friendly and cost effective manner. The annual cost for disposal of the bulbs
and ballasts would be approximately $160,000. With recycling the metal and glass, the cost
dropped to only $70,000.

Storage Tanks and Remediation Sites

Other pollution reduction programs include tank removals and site remediations. Since
1994 we have removed over 150 underground tanks and upgraded another 30 to meet
state and federal storage tank requirements. This project went beyond the regulatory
requirements to include storage tanks for non-regulated materials. The University
currently has a few active remediation sites, including the old North Campus Landfill,
and has completed several remediations for buildings on South Campus that were
former industrial facilities prior to University purchase.

University of Michigan Medical System

The University Hospitals and Health Centers have taken leadership in eliminating
mercury containing thermometers, blood-pressure equipment, and medical diagnostic
equipment from its operations. Over 900 lbs of mercury was recycled during this
process. They have also been recognized as one of the first 100 hospitals in the United
States to join the "Making Medicine Mercury Free Campaign" sponsored by the
American Hospital Association and the US EPA.

The University Hospital System recently captured the Michigan Recycling Coalition’s
Outstanding Public Recycling award for efforts on reducing waste generation.

University Hospital is also currently studying its sanitary sewer discharges for potential
pollution prevention initiatives. Food Services, Pharmacy, and Dentistry are just a few
areas that may implement pollution prevention initiatives in the near future.

Laboratory Micro-scale Techniques

Pollution prevention programs in laboratories involve substituting less toxic reagents or
using micro-quantities of chemicals, which reduces the amount of waste generated.

Research needs are driving the development of high tech laboratory equipment such as
micropipettes. Historically, chemistry laboratories used milliliter or larger volumes of
chemicals. With newer technology allowing accurate handling of smaller volumes, our
labs now typically use micro liter quantities.     The same holds true for analytical
equipment, where previously large samples were needed to achieve accurate results;
now the same or better results can be achieved with micro quantities of samples.
Smaller volumes of chemicals mean enhanced safety for people in the labs, less wasted
chemicals, and less waste products requiring disposal.

Transportation Services

The University is committed to using cleaner alternative fuels, both for energy in our
facilities and for fueling the vehicle fleet. The University bus fleet is aging and many of
the busses need to be replaced. With technology developments, the new diesel busses
are 20 times cleaner-burning than the older models. As part of our replacement
program, the University is collaborating with community groups to investigate busses
that use alternative fuel as potential options for replacing the aging fleet. The University
already switched all of its busses and other diesel vehicles to a cleaner burning bio-
diesel fuel mix. Bio-diesel is a blend of 20% soybean oil mixed with 80% regular diesel.
Industry tests have shown that burning the bio-diesel mix emits up to 20% less sulfur
oxides and hydrocarbons, and 10% less particulates when compared to regular diesel.

The University has also pursued other alternative fueled vehicles as they become
available. The University has been operating a fleet of six electric Ford Ranger pickup
trucks for several years and is committed to a dedicated ethanol vehicle fleet. By the end
of 2001, we will have the largest ethanol fleet in the state, with 240 vehicles. Ethanol is
a renewable fuel with reduced emissions when compared to traditional gasoline

Transportation Services is also reviewing its facilities for environmental concerns.
Currently a pilot project is underway to test the use of alternative products for some
maintenance operations.

Storm Water Efforts

In 1995, the University of Michigan voluntarily accepted a storm water discharge permit
under Michigan National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System. Under this permit a
storm water management plan was developed and is implemented on campus. The
Storm Water Management Program is comprised of three main sections: the effective
elimination of "illicit discharges", public education, and storm water pollution prevention.
The storm water pollution prevention initiatives include Best Management Practices,
control techniques, and system design for:
           o   Structural controls – maintaining the current catch basin cleaning program
               and identifying drainage patterns for each outfall

           o   Areas of development - developing, implementing, and enforcing controls
               to reduce pollutant discharges during and after construction is completed

           o   Roadways - maintaining roadways in a manner that reduces the
               discharge of pollutants, including deicing activities

            o   Flood control projects - managing any flood control devices to reduce the
                impact on water quality of the receiving water

            o   Pesticides and fertilizers - reducing the discharge of pollutants from their

            o   Spill prevention and response – implementing OSEH’s Emergency
                Response Contingency Plan to reduce the impact of a potential release
Public education is a large part of preventing unwanted discharges to the storm water
drainage system.    Further information on these efforts is available on the web at

Winter De-icing

The successful and efficient removal of snow and ice is much more complex than one
might expect. There really is a science to calibrating the equipment to apply just the
right amount of deicer. Monitoring weather patterns is also important so applications can
be made at the optimum time. For example, by applying the deicer just before the snow
hits the University reduces the amount of salt and sand needed since it prevents ice
from forming on the pavement. Because of these complexities, winter maintenance de-
icing activities also present pollution prevention opportunities.

The desire to reduce the amount of salt and sand used on campus is driven by both
operational and environmental needs. The salt use reduction team was established in
1995 to investigate alternatives to using sand and salt. This is a complex issue,
requiring a fine balance between protecting the environment and minimizing the risk for
students, faculty, and staff using University facilities in the winter. The salt use team has
been studying new and innovative technologies for de-icing such as product substitution
for traditional de-icers and best management practices for snow and ice removal. Many
pilot studies have been implemented around campus, and de-icing practices are
modified based on the findings from each study.

Since the mid 1990s the use of sand has dropped dramatically, from 1500 tons in 1993
to less than 500 tons in recent years. Sand is typically added to a salt application for
traction until the snow or ice melts. It is also used on parking structure roofs where salt
would cause excessive corrosion. The University has been able to reduce the sand use
through new techniques such as using liquid de-icers. One of the better success stories
comes with using a clear and odorless liquid product made from corn processing. This
material is bio-renewable, is not corrosive or harmful to the environment, and is easy on
building and parking structure maintenance. It does not require the clean up that salt
does from being tracked inside buildings.

Since 1996 there have been reductions in the use of salt on campus. The drop has not
been as dramatic as for sand, but that is to be expected since traditional practices of
snow and ice removal have continued in surface parking lots and other areas while the
new technologies are being developed. In the next couple of years these pilot programs
will be expanded to cover the entire campus.


Recycling programs at the University have proven very successful, resulting in a 30%
reduction of solid waste. A wide variety of materials are recycled, including bottles,

cans, wood, bulbs, ballasts, computers, oil, and paint. This recycling resulted in 250,000
pounds of bottles and cans being recycled in 1999. Also our extensive paper and
cardboard recycling program resulted in 4.6 million pounds being recycled. The
recycling efforts across campus have been made possible through collaboration with the
city Material Recovery Facility and through the efforts of the entire University community.

Student support is a key part of recycling programs, especially in the residence halls.
Student move-out provides an excellent opportunity to reuse or recycle materials. To
capture this waste stream, recycling stations are set up to collect and make good use of
over 12,000 lbs of clothing, dry goods, and household items each year. This is a very
successful program resulting in a great reuse of materials, and a tremendous benefit to
local community organizations.

Another key part of the recycling program is the participation of Athletics. At every
football game there are public announcements encouraging visitors to the stadium to
use the recycling containers. This past year the recycling statistics were also shown on
the big screen. These are proactive educational efforts that have significantly increased
participation every year. Paper products have been collected since 1995, and in 1999
we included the recycling of plastic and glass bottles. This gives The University of
Michigan the distinction of providing the only full service, in-house recycling program at
any stadium in the Big-10.



Purchasing has been working proactively toward reducing the quantities of materials
purchased so there is less waste generated. In particular, they have reviewed the
volumes of laboratory chemicals supplied by vendors for various departments. For
example, if a department only needs a pint of a chemical, it makes no sense to use a
vendor that only supplies in five-gallon quantities. Working with chemical vendors has
helped reduce waste and save money for the laboratories. Storing smaller volumes of
chemicals in the laboratories also enhances safety for our people.

Purchasing has also set up a web site for green products such as recycled paper and
office supplies, remanufactured furniture, and chlorine free paper. The University is
continually seeking new ways to promote the use of green products in departments.
Once again, this is an area where discussions have been underway with students to find
ways to promote these materials. The list of green products available in the purchasing
system is constantly being evaluated and expanded.

Purchasing for Housing has also switched to using non-toxic cleaning supplies,
enhancing safety for our building services staff. All of these actions work toward making
recycling or disposal easier, and reducing the amount of waste requiring disposal.


Leadership in Environmental Engineering Design, or LEED, is a nationally recognized
system for measuring the environmental sustainability of a building. It can be used to
measure existing structures or to help in setting standards for green design on new
projects. Many of the activities that score points in the rating system are already being
done here such as energy and water management, recycling, and design standards.

The University of Michigan is in the process of performing a LEED rating assessment on
the Life Sciences Institute buildings – the rating will provide options for increasing
sustainability during the design and construction phases.

Designing for Storm Water Management

Storm water management is a critical part of project design. It not only protects
buildings from flooding, but it protects the environment within the Huron River. The two
primary activities being done are construction of detention basins and controlling runoff
by landscape design through use of proper planting practices. As an example, during
the design of the Palmer Drive complex it was determined that there is a need for
controlling storm water flowing to the site as well as eliminating flooding south of that
location near Randall Lab. A million gallon storm water detention system was designed
under the parking deck that will eliminate flooding in those areas and help clean the
water flowing to the river. The next area undergoing conceptual design is North Campus
where there have been flooding issues over the last several years.

University Hospital Waste Management Planning and Design

Another major project to improve our environment was initiated by the University of
Michigan Medical System. A team of experts on medical waste management
determined that shifting to a steam sterilization process would be economically feasible,
eliminate air pollution, and be very publicly acceptable. The University Hospital
incinerator was removed in September 2000. This program, in coordination with the
award-winning program of waste segregation, will reduce the waste streams and
increase recycling efforts.


What environmental challenges does The University of Michigan now face? A number
of programs are already in place. The fastest way to make greater gains is by increasing
participation. The installation of the most efficient equipment available does little good if
building occupants do not to turn off the lights or computers when not in use.
Establishing collaborative efforts are key to addressing these concerns and will continue
to be a way to work in that direction.


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