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Iowa companies achieve economic and environmental results

  • 12/10/2020 11:58:00 AM
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DES MOINES — Project requests are currently being accepted from companies interested in participating in the 2021 Pollution Prevention Intern Program which will run from June 1 to Aug. 13, 2021.

The DNR’s Pollution Prevention (P2) Services program seeks facilities looking for cost-effective ways to cut or eliminate waste from their operations to improve environmental performance and save money. The P2 Intern Program places top engineering students in Iowa businesses to analyze current systems or processes, research alternative technologies and process improvements, and develop strategies to improve efficiency and save money.

“P2, or source reduction, is the first step in achieving true sustainability,” said Jeff Fiagle, the P2 Services Team Lead. “The intern program provides an extra set of hands and eyes to work directly with the company and focus on the process or system, find the inefficiencies, do the research and recommend cost-effective solutions.”

P2 is the process of identifying sources of waste or inefficiencies and stop the cause to avoid excess operating costs, quality control issues and waste disposal.

“This program is an excellent resource to employers in the state of Iowa. Each year, our assigned intern has provided us with results that have helped us improve our sustainability programs and environmental management,” said Brian Herbst, Plant Safety Manager for Smithfield Foods in Sioux City.

Since 2001, Iowa companies have saved more than $109 million as a result of implementing environmental improvements recommended by interns with the DNR’s Pollution Prevention Intern Program. Environmental savings associated with these cost savings include:

  • 95 billion gallons of water
  • 9,965 tons of hazardous waste
  • 255,929 tons of solid waste
  • 98 million kWh
  • 76 million therms
  • 385,502.62 MTCO2e

In addition to the intern program, the P2 Services team provides targeted assessments and technical resources at no cost and delivers two annual environmental workshop series.  

Contact the team at to discuss potential projects or request assistance. Project Request forms are available at