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Energy and Environment Directorate
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Staff Accomplishments

Turning Waste into Profit

July 2007
One company's throw-away materials could be another company's business opportunity. That message attracted close to 100 people to the kickoff of the Byproducts Synergy Northwest Network at Seattle City Hall on June 28, 2007. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is among the partners organizing the network. The network follows a national model, pioneered by the U.S. Business Council for Sustainable Development, where companies identify waste products that could become the feedstock for other companies, resulting in increased business profits and less waste disposed in the environment. Last month's workshop attracted participants from a wide variety of industrial and government sectors, including Weyerhaeuser, Boeing, ConocoPhillips, Seattle Mariners, Washington State Convention and Trade Center, government agencies, hospitals, utilities, and universities. After learning about the byproducts synergy process, participants listed on flipcharts their top wastes and feedstocks. Categories included chemicals, metals, construction materials, food waste, biologicals, and other materials ranging from Styrofoam to carbon dioxide. One promising synergy was glass waste that might be useful for making dishware, vases, and building products. Network members will work together over the following year to identify new market opportunities and waste products; find lower-cost, local feedstocks; and reduce costs and risks associated with wastes. Though the kickoff workshop attracted mostly Puget Sound participants, an Eastern Washington chapter is being planned, with Boise Cascade already a founding member. PNNL participants include Kristi Branch, National Security Directorate; Rich Chapas, Commercial Partnerships Directorate; Scott Butner, Computational and Information Sciences Directorate; and Wally Weimer; Environmental Technology Directorate. In addition to PNNL, other partners involved in organizing the network include the U.S. Business Council for Sustainable Development, Pollution Prevention Resource Center, The RETEC Group, the Network for Business Innovation and Sustainability, Washington Department of Ecology, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 10, and King County.

Page 712 of 1046

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas