Kansas Environmental News

Summer/Fall 2013   

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Thank you for registering to receive electronic communications from the Kansas Department of Health and Environment's (KDHE) Pollution Prevention and Small Business Environmental Assistance Programs.  KDHE is pleased to publish this Summer/Fall issue of Kansas Environmental News. We encourage you to share the newsletter with co-workers and friends to assist us in developing the email contact list. Simply click the "Forward Email" button at the bottom of the page. 

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If you have any comments or recommendations on how to improve the e-Newsletter, feel free to email Melissa Hammond at mhammond@kdheks.gov

In This Issue
Regulatory Agenda
KDHE Hosts Kansas Environmental Conference
KDHE Recognizes Businesses for Pollution Prevention (P2) Efforts
Secondary Containment of Underground Storage Tank Systems: New Requirements for New USTs in Kansas
2013 Brownfields Coalition Grant
Cleaning Up Contaminated Property to Promote Redevelopment
Upcoming Events

KDHE Division of Environment Regulatory Agenda 


KDHE's Division of Environment has numerous regulations currently in process. To view the regulatory agenda, click the link below. 


DOE Regulatory Agenda

KDHE Hosts Kansas Environmental Conference

by Melissa Hammond, KDHE


The 2013 Kansas Environmental Conference was held August 13 - 15 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Topeka. The conference, which focused on environmental compliance, pollution prevention, and

sustainability, recorded an impressive attendance of 380 individuals participating throughout the event.  

Capitol Plaza
Capitol Plaza Hotel


On Tuesday, August 13, the KDHE Bureau of Waste Management hosted a Basic Hazardous Waste Generator Workshop and an Advanced Hazardous Waste Generator Workshop.  Over 100 individuals attended these workshops to learn more about hazardous waste generator requirements and other topics.


The conference commenced Wednesday morning with a plenary session on the Kansas Environment Update presented by John Mitchell, Director, KDHE Division of Environment.


Concurrent sessions covered various topics related to air, water, waste, remediation, sustainability and pollution prevention. The conference closed with a plenary session on Coping with Kansas Drought: The Role of our Reservoirs presented by Tracy Streeter, Director, Kansas Water Office. 


Thirty-one vendors displayed their products and services at the conference. Many of them offered great prizes for the vendor drawings held on Thursday. A vendor social was held on Wednesday evening. This was a great opportunity to visit with the vendors in a relaxed atmosphere.


The conference presentations are now available online at http://www.kdheks.gov/sbcs/environment_conf.html.  If you would like to participate in the planning of the 2014 conference, feel free to email Melissa Hammond at mhammond@kdheks.gov.

KDHE Recognizes Businesses for 


Pollution Prevention (P2) Efforts



The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) announced the 2013 Pollution Prevention (P2) Award recipients during an awards luncheon at the Kansas Environmental Conference, held August 13-15 at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Topeka.


John Mitchell, Director, KDHE's Division of Environment, presented award plaques to Owens Corning Systems, LLC Kansas City Plant and SPX Cooling Technologies, Inc.  Mr. Mitchell also presented certificates of Honorable Mention to General Motors Fairfax Assembly Plant, McDonald's of Ottawa, Eaton Corporations - Hydraulics Division, and CST Storage.


The Kansas Pollution Prevention Program promotes pollution prevention as an environmental ethic to achieve improvements in public health and environmental quality.  The awards are presented to entities that have reduced or eliminated waste at the source, reduced air emissions or practiced energy and/or water conservation.  Companies, communities, schools and organizations each year are able to apply for the Kansas P2 awards.


Owens Corning Systems, LLC Kansas City Plant, Kansas City, is a manufacturer of building products.  The Kansas City plant is being awarded for its efforts to reduce pollution, and conserve energy and water.  The OC Kansas City plant converted the fiberglass wool manufacturing facility from a phenolic/formaldehyde binding process to a natural, starch-based process.  The substitution eliminated or significantly reduced generation of air pollutants including ammonia (114 tons/year, 99.8%), formaldehyde (28 tons/year, 95%), methanol (15 tons/year, 99%) and phenol (22 tons/year, 99.9%).  From 2010 to 2012, energy conservation measures resulted in a savings of 22,200 MWh annually and water conservation projects reduced water use by 73% (in addition to a 53% reduction from a 2008 project). These improvements reduced the environmental footprint of the Kansas City manufacturing plant, consistent with the sustainability strategy initiated by the company.


SPX Cooling Technologies, Inc., Olathe, is a cooling tower and air-cooled condenser manufacturer. SPX is being awarded for its efforts in reducing toxics, waste, and air emissions, and for energy conservation. SPX reduced lead use by redesigning their fan blades. The new blades (designed for manufacturing and assembly in the U.S.) require less weight for balancing, as well as the ability to use HMG steel weights. Purchased amounts of lead were reduced by 35.3%, approximately 1,300 lbs/year. The purchase of a tie-rod decoiler enabled SPX to decrease their metal scrap from 35-50% to 5-6% ($75,000/year). SPX also installed three new energy efficient boiler systems, saving an estimated 2,033 MMBtu ($16,000/year). A lighting replacement project resulted in 435,000 annual kWh savings ($33,000).


General Motors Fairfax Assembly Plant, Kansas City, assembles the Chevrolet Malibu and Buick Lacrosse. General Motors is receiving honorable mention for its efforts in the reduction of energy use and air emissions. General Motors reduced the number of air supply houses (ASH) in operation, rebalanced their ASH system, updated controls, and added a weather station. This reduced the amount of treated outside air and associated power requirements. The project reduced annual electricity use by 17,047,000 MWh ($1,338,000), natural gas use by 79,500 MCF ($476,000), and metric tons of CO2 emissions by 4,300.


McDonald's of Ottawa, Ottawa, is a food service retailer. McDonald's is receiving honorable mention for its efforts in energy conservation. McDonald's of Ottawa installed a series of line conditioners (V-Blocks),added "smart cool" units to control the HVAC roof units, and upgraded lighting throughout the restaurant. These projects resulted in an estimated reduction of 46 tons of CO2 emissions annually. Energy required for lighting was reduced by 50%.


Eaton Corporations - Hydraulics Division, Hutchinson, is an internal supplier of machined components for Pump Valve E (PVE) series and medium duty piston pumps and gear pumps. Eaton Corporation is receiving honorable mention for its efforts in reducing air emissions and energy conservation. Eaton Corporation's compressed air project involved checking and fixing existing air leaks throughout the 338,000 square foot plant, installation of a new variable speed compressor, dryer, flow controller and zero loss drains. This project will result in an annual savings of 1,083,000 kwh of electricity ($102,000).


CST Storage, Parsons, is a provider of modular, factory coated bolted storage tanks for dry bulk and liquid applications in municipal, industrial and agricultural markets. CST is receiving honorable mention for its efforts in waste reduction and reducing air emissions. CST upgraded their solvent distiller resulting in a decrease of waste by 1.4 tons. Because the new distiller is reclaiming twice as much reusable solvent, a savings of 7.8 tons in raw material is realized annually. CST also updated their paint booth filter schedule which reduced the amount of waste generated by 8.04 tons annually. An air leak detection audit detected 13 leaks. The elimination of the compressor leaks saved 55,000 kWh of energy ($4,400) annually and the elimination of a welding gas leak saved 1,329,000 cubic feet of material ($30,300). 


Congratulations to the 2013 P2 award recipients!

Learn more about these projects and the Pollution Prevention Awards by visiting http://www.kdheks.gov/sbcs/p2_pollution_prevention_awards.html.

Secondary Containment of Underground Storage Tank Systems: Requirements for New USTs in Kansas

by Randy Carlson


House Bill 2305, an amendment to the Kansas Storage Tank Act to require secondary containment for new Underground Storage Tank (UST) systems, was passed unanimously by the Kansas House and Senate and signed into law by Governor Sam Brownback during the 2013 legislative session. The requirement became effective July 1, 2013. KDHE proposed the amendment to satisfy EPA requirements mandated by the federal Energy Policy Act of 2005.


Four components of UST systems are affected: 1) the UST, 2) piping, 3) dispenser, and 4) submersible pump. The purpose of the requirement is to prevent, detect, and contain a release of regulated substances from a UST system.  When new piping is installed or old piping replaced, containment must also be installed at the submersible pump and under the dispenser so as to provide complete containment of the piping in those areas. Containment of the submersible pump and under-dispenser containment must be liquid tight on its sides, bottom, and any penetrations, be compatible with the substance conveyed by the piping, and allow for visual inspection or be monitored for a release.


Existing single-wall UST systems are not affected until a UST is replaced or 50% or more of a piping run is replaced. The requirement does not apply to repairs to a UST, piping, or dispensers that are meant to restore a tank, pipe, or dispenser to operating condition. The requirement for under-dispenser containment does not apply to installation of a dispenser installed separately from the equipment needed to connect the dispenser to the UST system. The requirement for double-wall piping does not apply to safe suction piping.


2013  Brownfields  Coalition  Grant

KDHE        City of Chanute       City of Ottawa

Fort Scott/Bourbon County Riverfront Authority


The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE), Fort Scott/Bourbon County Riverfront Authority, City of Chanute and City of Ottawa were selected to receive a federal

The mission of the Kansas Brownfields Coalition is to empower Coalition communities and other stakeholders in economic redevelopment to work as partners to redevelop brownfields properties. 
The grant will assist in providing financial support and technical assistance for brownfields activities by promoting partnerships, assessing environmental conditions, strengthening the economic marketplace, sustaining reuse of underutilized properties and protecting public health and the environment. Approximately 60 properties totaling over 350 acres have been identified in the Coalition communities for assessment and evaluation for potential cleanup planning under this grant. While most of the assessment funds will be used in the above mentioned Coalition areas, remaining funds will be applied across Kansas.


Receiving this grant funding allows KDHE the opportunity to further enhance the Kansas Brownfields Program by reaching out to more neighborhoods that might not otherwise have access to resources to address redevelopment of blighted areas in their communities. Ultimately the process of redeveloping Brownfields properties can create new jobs and increase local tax bases fostering future economic development opportunities. For additional information regarding the Kansas Brownfields Coalition Grant, please visit the Kansas Brownfields Program website: http://www.kdheks.gov/brownfields/ or contact the Brownfields Coordinator, Maggie Weiser, by phone at 785-296-5519 or by email mweiser@kdheks.gov.


Brownfields Assessment Coalition Grant in the amount of $600,000 from EPA's Brownfields Assessment, Revolving Loan Fund and Cleanup (ARC) Grants program. The ARC grant process is part of an annual national competition, and the Kansas Brownfields Coalition are among 240 recipients in 45 states receiving ARC grants in 2013. This unique partnership allows KDHE to administer the grant and hire qualified environmental consultants to conduct environmental site assessments (ESAs) of properties located in Coalition Members communities. The goal of the grant is to promote improvement and redevelopment of underused or vacated properties ("brownfields"), the assessment of which is the first step in the effort to redevelop such properties into viable commercial, civic and recreational centers.   

Cleaning Up Contaminated Property to Promote Redevelopment 


In 1945, General Motors Corporation (GM) began automobile assembly operations at the Fairfax I Plant in Kansas City's Fairfax Industrial Park, until operations ceased in 1986. While demolition was completed in 1987, investigations and remedial activities for contaminated soil and groundwater continued under KDHE Bureau of Environmental Remediation oversight. When GM filed for bankruptcy, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court created the RACER Trust to address environmental contamination at properties formerly owned by General Motors Corporation. KDHE is working with RACER Trust to address the contamination at the Fairfax I Plant Site. 


As assessing contamination and initiating clean-up is taking place with an eye toward redevelopment of the 80-acre site, a purchase agreement was reached with NorthPoint, a development company. NorthPoint projects that the new Central Industrial Park will create over 2,000 new jobs and over $40 million in capital investment.


Actions are underway as KDHE, RACER Trust, and NorthPoint collectively parallel redevelopment with clean-up in order to promote redevelopment and job creation while protecting human health and the environment.  Large-scale remedial efforts are planned in fall 2013 to address contaminated soil with additional work to address groundwater contamination anticipated in the future.  

Sticky Notes mark your calendar   

Upcoming Events 

Governor's Conference on the Future of Water in Kansas
October 24-25, 2013


This year highlights the latest policy and research development of water issues in Kansas.  The conference brings together scientists, water managers, state and federal officials and legislators, city and county administrators, environmental organizations, irrigators and citizens who share an interest in Kansas water resources.  Many great speakers and topics are planned; a few are highlighted below.

  • Charles Fishman will be discussing the value of water.  The author of two bestselling books:  The Big Thirst and The Wal-Mart Effect, he speaks nationally on economic and social issues.
  • Pat Mulroy who oversees the Las Vegas Valley Water District and Southern Nevada Water Authority, will talk on drought management.
  • Dr. James Stack, Director, of the Great Plains Diagnostic Network and Professor of Plant Pathology, KSU, will speak on day two.



to find conference details, sponsor and hotel information.  Registration deadline is October 15.


Are you a small business that has questions regarding compliance with environmental regulations or permits? Don't hesitate to call Kansas State University's Small Business Environmental Assistance Program for free, confidential technical assistance! Simply call 800-578-8898 or visit www.sbeap.org.


Our Vision
Healthy Kansans living in safe and sustainable environments.

Our Mission
To protect and improve the health and environment of all Kansans.