By Tim Giardiana  |   June 16th, 2015
   

risk based routing; waste routing; routing evaluation; risk reduction

When your company describes its values are words like "community", "safety" and "accountability" used?  Chances are if you are in the business of providing services you feel a great sense of responsibility to minimize risk and protect the local community.
 
When routing your vehicles they key is balancing overall efficiency with safety.  How can you optimize vehicle traffic, reduce risk and drive expenses down?  The answer – Risk Based Routing.
 
The Dilemma
 
Typically, little attention is devoted to your vehicles when they leave your facility.  Questions related to when they leave and what roads they will take may not be considered.  But, the “when” and the “where” are pivotal questions.  Ask and the answers will change the way you provide services to your communities while minimizing risk.
 
The time has come to have an honest discussion about the risks related to routing and face the issues head-on.  Time spent during rush hour, or worse yet, when school busses are delivering students can be reduced and even eliminated. 
 
The Perception
 
Yes, the old saying “Perception is Reality” is so true.  People believe and make assumptions based on what they hear and read in the news. 
 
Your trucks that leave your facility are typically owned and operated by you.  Now some may be subcontractors or other procured vendors…but they are on your watch.  While out in the community they are your company.  If the community experience traffic disruption or accidents involving any of these vehicles the perception is your company is responsible.
 
The Solution
 
Optimal route with minimal exposure.  Sounds simple.  The answer is slightly more complex but it does have a name…risk based routing.
 
It’s the planning that can become complicated.  Vital to any company is the consideration of risks and their associated costs.  While planning may not eliminate all incidents, it will minimize the risks attributed to root causes.  To effectively analyze risks and quantify anticipated costs software must be used. 
 
Simply put, software paired with industry knowledge can keep you and your company off the 6 O’clock news and the front page of the local newspaper.  Out on the streets you risk the reputation of your company every day.  Risk based routing is the best planning process available to minimize risk and protect your business. 
Tim Giardiana, Vice President Waste Management
As the Vice President of Hull’s Waste Management Market, Tim leads the growth of strategic sales and business development activities.  He continues to build on Hull’s strong track record of project successes, maintaining and enhancing our reputation as an industry leader.
 
Tim has more than 28 years of consulting and market planning experience in the waste industry, including 14 years in senior level management in Central Ohio. His expertise encompasses strategic business planning and sales; operations management and efficiencies; mergers and acquisitions; and team development. He has been Project Manager working with major US cities across the country performing efficiency reviews, waste composition studies, sustainability and routing logistic projects. 
 
Tim holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
 
 
 
By Cheryl Green, PE, CSI  |   June 15th, 2015
   
industrial wastewater treatmentTreatment approaches for wastewater are as unique as the industries that generate wastewater. 
 
Variables in the waste generation process and the intended discharge point are only two of the factors that can affect the selection of a treatment plan. Food processing industries generally require biological treatment systems whereas automotive industries typically require precipitation of heavy metals and separation of oils and greases.
 
Today’s environmental permit limitations are very restrictive, often assigning effluent concentrations of regulated parameters in the parts per billion range as opposed to parts per million.
Pretreatment is an option in an on-site treatment system that allows discharge into a municipal sewer system.  In comparison a higher degree of treatment can be the goal and this allows direct discharge into a receiving stream.  The dilemma is selecting the option that is the very best given your specific industry.
 
What is the most cost effective?  What is the fastest? What is proven to be foolproof?  The answers are based on site specific study, the industry type and tried and true industry knowledge.
 
Treatment options vary and are completely contingent on the type of wastewater generated. Do you pretreat on site and discharge into the municipal sewer system or can you treat your wastewater so it is clean enough to discharge directly into a receiving stream?
Specialty treatment processes are available and can be purchased based on need…but which ones are the best and are they worth the expense?  Technologies exist for purchasing specialty treatment processes that are the best fit for your specific pollutants.  The true challenges lie in how to incorporate such equipment into a system that is tailored to your specific operational industry needs and address the management of residuals as they will likely require permit approval.
 
Often pilot testing is a valuable step in the treatment design, allowing you to determine how effective the treatment is with varying the conditions to match those expected at the specific industry, and providing important data that affects costs of operation, such as chemical usage and residuals production, so the plant manager can anticipate the long-term costs of compliance.
 
To complicate matters you have to consider all impacts to surface water and ground water.  Surface contamination of stormwater runoff from your parking lots and rooftops provide yet another series of treatment challenges.  Groundwater can be affected through uncontrolled releases from inadvertent leaks or spills. The determination of the quantity and quality of the contamination will dictate the treatment.  To find the best fit regulatory agencies must be negotiated with to determine an appropriate yet cost effective treatment. 
 
With new industries like shale oil and gas and emerging regulations new treatment technologies and approaches must be developed and applied. It is pivotal that engineers and hydrogeologists use innovative technologies paired with regulatory knowledge to guide their clients to compliance through cost-effective approaches. 
Cheryl Green, PE, CSI, Senior Project Manager
Cheryl has over 35 years of experience in civil and environmental engineering for public and private sector clients. Her environmental experience includes planning, design, and permitting of municipal sanitary sewers and wastewater treatment systems; collection and treatment facilities for industrial process wastewater and contaminated storm water; and various environmental facilities. Cheryl has designed many pumping and pressurized piping systems throughout her career, including sanitary lift stations and forcemains. Her civil site engineering experience includes industrial plant facilities design such as fire protection storage tanks and pumping systems, plant rail spurs, roadways and truck docks.
 
 
She holds a Bachelor in Civil Engineering from Ohio Northern University.
 
 
 
By Kara Allison, APR  |   June 14th, 2015
   
brownfield redevelopment and livibility principalsHave you applied for federal brownfields funding lately? Perhaps you’ve noticed an increasing emphasis on incorporating sustainable concepts, equitable development, and other livability-focused activities into these funding proposals. It’s a shift in approach designed to support growing stronger, more sustainable communities nationwide, and if you want to secure federal funding for your future brownfields projects it’s time to start paying attention to the details now.
 
The Partnership for Sustainable Communities – an interagency partnership formed in 2009 between the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – works to coordinate federal housing, transportation, water, and other infrastructure investments to make neighborhoods more prosperous, allow people to live closer to jobs, save households time and money, and reduce pollution. The partnership agencies incorporate six principles of livability into federal funding programs, policies, and future legislative proposals – which we’re now seeing with increased frequency in federal brownfield funding applications.
 
So just the very nature of even implementing a brownfields project puts a community on the right path to incorporating the “livability principles” identified by the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, right? Not quite. But here are a few ways to start thinking about how to encompass every aspect of the Livability Principles in planning your next brownfield redevelopment project:
 
  • Provide More Transportation Choices – Set your local brownfields task force loose on researching information for an infrastructure assessment study to help make recommendations for improved and additional community transportation alternatives, including ways to increase walkability in target corridors and neighborhoods.
  • Promote Equitable, Affordable Housing – Include recommendations in remedial action plans about whether assessed sites could be used to improve and grow the community’s stock of affordable, energy-efficient housing, particularly for sites assessed within any neighborhood improvement areas.
  • Enhance Economic Competitiveness – Focus on and conduct assessments at key sites, which will increase opportunities for economic competitiveness by identifying brownfields for future cleanup. Market restored properties to new and expanding businesses which will in turn create both construction and permanent jobs in the community. 
  • Support Existing Communities – Use outreach activities and public meetings in the targeted community to leverage information and gather input into the brownfield redevelopment process. Include local organizations, residents, and businesses from the impacted neighborhoods to support your grassroots, early brownfields planning initiatives.
  • Coordinate and Leverage Federal Policies and Investments – Apply for and leverage multiple sources of federal, state, and local grant funding for brownfields. Use logical steps in layering the available sources of public funding (planning, assessment, cleanup, and reinvestment) to help secure and attract private funding to keep growing investments in your local brownfields initiative.
  • Value Communities and Neighborhoods – Begin assessing brownfield sites in the most impacted core of your community. It not only provides the ability to restore a sense of community pride in the targeted corridor, but within the community as a whole. An added bonus: you’ll see a ripple impact on the greater regional area and the opportunity to leverage broader support for your local community brownfield initiative.
Kara Allison, APR, Director of Communications, Government and Community Relations
Kara Allison directs Hull’s corporate communications and public affairs initiatives where she specializes in state and federal environmental policy and legislative issues, community outreach, media strategy, and crisis communications.  As a part of Hull’s funding team, she has assisted in securing more than $185 million in grants for brownfields, energy, and green development projects.  A journalism graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University, Kara has 20 years of experience in public and media relations.  She is a principal in the firm, an accredited member of the Public Relations Society of America and a registered lobbyist in Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
 
Kara builds credibility with legislators, government officials, municipalities, community groups, and reporters by helping them understand the various environmental issues associated with development projects.  She also works with developers and communities in public-private partnerships to help foster creative redevelopment and funding strategies for brownfield and renewable energy sites, and has been directly responsible for developing public relations and community outreach strategies for a number of high-profile, large-scale national redevelopment projects.  She routinely provides public outreach and media counsel and shares her in-depth regulatory, legislative and program knowledge with staff and clients. 
 
 
By Kara Allison, APR  |   June 13th, 2015
   
brownfield redevelopmentWhen I was 13 years old, I spent a few weeks during my summer vacation going to work with my dad. At the time, he was chairing the Department of Welding Engineering at The Ohio State University and teaching a summer course for graduate students. The department and its classrooms were housed in a crumbling World War II-era building on campus – complete with rusted nuclear fallout shelter signs tacked to the concrete block walls; huge, humming industrial lights hanging from the ceilings that had to be turned on with massive electrical switches; a dark, dusty industrial-smelling machine shop; and a lab filled with recycled 1970s welding robots. This old dirty building – and in particular the machine shop with its wire storage cages, high ceilings, cranes and other dated equipment and tools – became my “playground” that summer, a constant spark of curiosity and intrigue with each visit. And unbeknownst to me at the time, it was setting the stage for my future career passion: solving the puzzle of redeveloping brownfield properties.
 
I didn’t have a clue as to what a brownfield was when I was 13. My dad was attempting to persuade me to study engineering, hoping that spending some time with him on campus might “rub off” and I’d pursue it as a career. I spent a lot of time exploring the building, studying how it was built and how the machines worked, taking pictures of everything. I was intrigued by the windows in the roof of the welding lab and how the panes of glass were different colors, smudged with the accumulated dust and grime of many years passed. In the back corridor of the building was a “break room” of sorts, with grimy mismatched chairs and a 2,500-piece jigsaw puzzle spread out on a wooden table. It was a picture of Albert Einstein sticking out his tongue – the famous photo Arthur Sasse captured on Einstein’s 72nd birthday in 1951. A handful of the graduate students around the building worked on this puzzle between classes and labs, and so did I. Collectively, we finished the puzzle that summer. It was a sense of accomplishment that stuck with me. I didn’t get a picture of it, but I always thought it was the most interesting setting for solving a puzzle.
 
It’s funny how the experiences I shared with dad that summer did influence me in the long-run. I flashback now to those memories every time I set foot inside an old manufacturing building. I always notice the smell of an abandoned factory – that heavy industrial, dusty smell that seems to linger in every brick and beam. It smells exactly like the old Welding Engineering building used to. I’m drawn to and take pictures of the windows, and in particular the multi-colored panes with the rusted-out frames, especially the windows I find in former automotive assembly facilities. They look exactly like the ones in the old Welding Engineering building did. I comb through the relics left behind in the former employee break rooms – old newspapers and magazines, pictures up on corkboards, and occasionally, a jigsaw puzzle of some sort. It looks exactly like I remember the break room being in the old Welding Engineering building.
 
Today, that old Welding Engineering building only exists in my memory. It was demolished and replaced by a modern facility with new classrooms and research labs some time ago. But I often think back to that building when I’m working now with developers and community partners on new brownfields revitalization projects, and I’m influenced by the challenge of the Einstein puzzle I helped solve that summer. Perhaps you have a brownfields puzzle waiting out there that I can help you solve? Here at Hull, we’re really good at putting the pieces together.
 
For the record, I didn’t grow up to become an engineer. But I do work with a talented group of engineers every day and I figure that’s probably close enough for my dad to claim his influence “rubbed off” on me. Until next time… 
Kara Allison, APR, Director of Communications, Government and Community Relations
Kara Allison directs Hull’s corporate communications and public affairs initiatives where she specializes in state and federal environmental policy and legislative issues, community outreach, media strategy, and crisis communications.  As a part of Hull’s funding team, she has assisted in securing more than $185 million in grants for brownfields, energy, and green development projects.  A journalism graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University, Kara has 20 years of experience in public and media relations.  She is a principal in the firm, an accredited member of the Public Relations Society of America and a registered lobbyist in Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
 
Kara builds credibility with legislators, government officials, municipalities, community groups, and reporters by helping them understand the various environmental issues associated with development projects.  She also works with developers and communities in public-private partnerships to help foster creative redevelopment and funding strategies for brownfield and renewable energy sites, and has been directly responsible for developing public relations and community outreach strategies for a number of high-profile, large-scale national redevelopment projects.  She routinely provides public outreach and media counsel and shares her in-depth regulatory, legislative and program knowledge with staff and clients. 
 
 
 
 
 
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