A Drug Enforcement Agency laboratory in Vista and two local military bases were honored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today for conservation efforts.
The DEA Pacific Southwest Lab, MCAS Miramar and Naval Base Coronado were given Federal Green Challenge awards by the EPA.
"Federal agencies participating in the Pacific Southwest program saved over $31.8 million by reducing waste, water, and energy use over the past two years," said EPA Regional Administrator Jared Blumenfeld. "During this same period, these agencies have conserved over 350 million gallons of water. In a time of drought, this level of federal leadership on water conservation is critical."
The DEA lab in Vista cut potable water use by 40 percent last year by installing low-flow toilets and aerators on sinks, and adjusted its ventilation and air conditioning system to ensure maximum water efficiency. The DEA also increased electronics recycling by 58 percent over the previous year.
MCAS Miramar was honored for education, outreach and waste programs. Base personnel promoted a recycling program at teen and child care centers during Earth Week, conducted two electronic waste collection events and provided recycling information through email and marquee announcements that reached three-quarters of the base population.
The base increased recycling by 30 percent and reduced its solid waste disposal by more than 22 percent, according to the EPA.
At Naval Base Coronado, water use was reduced last year by 20 percent -- conserving more than 101 million gallons. Irrigation frequency was reduced to allow some lawn areas to go dormant, one-pint urinals were installed, the chemical treatment of cooling towers' valves were adjusted to use less water, and galley water use was minimized.
Over the past two years, federal installations in the EPA's Pacific Southwest region that participate in the conservation programs have saved over 455 million gallons of water, the agency said.
—City News Service