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DNR Pollution Prevention Intern Program identifies up to $1.5 million in environmental savings for Iowa companies

  • 9/30/2021 2:16:00 PM
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DES MOINES — Seven Iowa companies now have the potential to save more than $1.5 million as a result of working with the Iowa DNR’s Pollution Prevention (P2) Intern Program to bolster profits and meet environmental targets. 

The P2 Intern Program creates a unique partnership between academia, business and government that works together to achieve economic and environmental results. Since 2001, companies have reduced operating costs by more than $111.8 million as a result of implementing P2 Intern Projects.

This program places top engineering students in Iowa facilities to focus on environmental priorities. After conducting an analysis, gathering data and establishing a baseline, interns research alternative processes or technologies and develop strategies to improve the way resources are used. 

"Our intern developed his project beyond our expectations. He left us with a tool that will help us quantify and track our progress toward reducing plant utility usage,” said Enzo Rizzo, Environmental Manager at JBS USA, LLC in Marshalltown. “I highly recommend this program to companies looking to reduce operating costs and improve environmental performance."

The 2021 projects addressed water and energy usage, resource recovery and reuse opportunities, hazardous material usage, process efficiency and quality assurance. While on-site, interns initiated implementation of improvements that are projected to save host companies more than $325,000 in the first year. Annual environmental reductions generated in 2021 include:

  • 47,191,203 gallons of water
  • 11.5 tons of hazardous material
  • 586 tons of solid waste
  • 2.3 million kilowatt hours of energy 

Full case summaries of these and other past projects may be viewed on our website at Project request forms for Iowa facilities that are looking for cost-effective ways to cut or eliminate waste from their operations and improve environmental performance are also available at this website.