The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) announced the winners of the 2019 ADEQ Environmental Awards at an awards ceremony held Tuesday at the Arkansas State Capitol. Director Becky W. Keogh announced the winners who were presented their award by Governor Asa Hutchinson.
“We are fortunate to see the increasing number of leaders who are committed to transforming Arkansas’s energy and environment future,” Keogh said. “Arkansas communities are the true winners from these amazing successes.”
AAEA member Entergy Arkansas took home the Energy Excellence (E2) award for its Home Energy Solutions program. Entergy partners with local trade allies (including other AAEA members) to install WiFi-connected thermostats in customers’ homes. The advanced thermostats help reduce the electric bill for customers when they are not home, and reduce demand on the electric grid through the demand response program. Since 2016, more than 4,000 advanced thermostats have been installed in Arkansas, and 1,500 are planned to be installed in 2019. Collectively, Entergy customers have saved over 3,332,051 kilowatt hours of electricity (equal to 2,356 metric tons of carbon dioxide) and over $170,000. Entergy and other Arkansas utilities, through the public utility energy efficiency program directed by the Arkansas Public Service Commission, have led the nation in creating regulatory required action in energy efficiency to benefit the economics to the consumer while maintaining the reliability and security of the electricity market.
Husqvarna Group was named the Arkansas Environmental Technology (TECHe) award winner in part for its 1.4 MW solar array developed by AAEA member Today’s Power. The Husqvarna Group is the world’s largest producer of outdoor power products. The Group operates a Plastic Injection Molding Manufacturing Operation in Nashville. In 2015, the manufacturer launched “Sustainovate,” an innovation-based initiative to make sustainability a real competitive advantage for the Group and to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by one third before the end of 2035. As a result, in 2017, Husqvarna installed a solar array at its Nashville facility. The array, estimated to have a 20-year life benefit, generates roughly 30% of the facility’s annual electricity, saving $137,762 over the last 12-month period, and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 33,189 metric tons per year.
AAEA member eSCO Processing and Recycling was a TECHe finalist. The world class electronic waste recycling company headquartered in Rogers promotes computer literacy through its STEM Initiative. The company has provided 100 refurbished computers to non-profit educational programs in Arkansas. In 2018, eSCO facilities processed approximately 20 million pounds of electronics, bringing its total to more than 120 million pounds since its founding. eSCO has diverted approximately 167 million pounds of greenhouse gases, 3.5 million pounds of toxic materials and recovered more than 40 million pounds of precious metals.