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News from the Toxics Use Reduction Institute
at the University of Massachusetts Lowell

May 2012
Upcoming Events
Honoring Champions of Toxics Use Reduction
June 13, 2012

Massachusetts Process Safety Regulations Workshops
June 13, 15, 26, 28

Science Advisory Board Meeting
June 28, 2012
TUR Planner Course

The 2012 TUR Planner Course will begin shortly after Labor Day.  This is a seven week course with one full day of classroom instruction per week, plus outside reading and group project work.  

The venue and exact schedule will not be confirmed before the start of July, but we plan to hold it somewhere in the vicinity of Worcester.  If you are interested in attending, please contact Mark Myles or consult our website for the schedule announcement.
If you have any questions regarding course content, or any aspect of training for the TUR Planner program, please contact Mark Myles at 978-934-3298, or mark.myles@turi.org.


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New Resource

Eliminating the use of toxic chemicals in dry cleaning: case study of Ace Cleaners, North Andover, Massachusetts
Small business conserves energy, saves money

Cleaner offers resource conservation tips at Everett demonstration site and tour 

Even in a down economy, doing good things for the environment can do good things for your bottom line. That's
Mr. John's demo site
Ernie Barbato receives a commendation on his resource conservation efforts from State Rep. Stephen S. Smith
the conclusion at Mr. John's Cleaners in Everett, where an analysis of operations showed that reducing the business's environmental footprint also reduced operating costs. Ernie Barbato, owner of Mr. John 's Cleaners, investigated and implemented many improvements - some extensive, some nearly free - that have driven down costs while improving quality of service and winning new customers.

At a demonstration site and tour held on May 17, planners and local business owners heard about the many measures the owner took to reduce energy and toxics use, such as: 
  • a conversion from perchloroethylene-based dry cleaning to professional wet cleaning
  • a boiler replacement that will reduce heating costs and pay for itself in less than four years
  • equipment changes that reduce compressed air use by half
  • installation of new lighting, pipe insulation, steam trap replacement
  • changes to delivery vehicles to reduce fuel use up to 25%

Says Ernie Barbato of Mr. John's Cleaners:  "I wish I knew then what I know now."  

Executive Housekeeping Today features article on the TURI Laboratory's testing program

The TURI Green Cleaning Laboratory's work was the
EHT cover
TURI staff were featured on the cover of EHT magazine
subject of the cover article of the April 2012 issue o
f the magazine "Executive Housekeeping Today."

Entitled "Making the world a safer place to live and work," the article provided an overview of TURA, and highlighted the lab's High Performance Cleaning Product program -- a voluntary, fee-based program that tests the effectiveness of green cleaning products. The program was created in a partnership with the International Executive Housekeeping Association (IEHA.)
Apply for a TURI Community and Small Business Grant

The Toxics Use Reduction Institute is pleased to invite
VidaVerde women mix safer cleaners
A member of the Brazilian Women's Group demonstrates how to make safer cleaners 
proposals from community organizations, municipal departments, small businesses, trade associations, and regional and statewide organizations for support under our Community and Small Business Grant Program.

This year we are especially interested in supporting projects that elevate toxics use reduction ideas and projects to a regional or statewide level; however, we also welcome applications for more local projects.


The maximum award amount for regional or statewide projects is $20,000. The maximum award amount for local projects is $10,000.  Funding is contingent on availability of program funds. Applications must be received by June 29, 2012 at NOON.


For questions at any time during the application process, please contact Joy Onasch, Community and Small Business Program Manager, at 978-934-4343. You are encouraged to contact the program to discuss project ideas sufficiently in advance of the June 29 deadline.


 Download the application package 


Staff Activities
After seven years as TURI's Library Manager, Jan Hutchins will be retiring on June 1. Prior to joining TURI in 2005, she servedJan Hutchins as Assistant Director of the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act Office in the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. Jan plans to move to the mountains of North Carolina with her husband, Charlie. In retirement she looks forward to having much more time to read and to enjoy the outdoors. We thank Jan for her many contributions to the program and wish her the best!