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State of Colorado Honors Three City Departments with Environmental Leadership

Released on Thursday, October 5, 2017
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The State of Colorado this week recognized three City of Fort Collins departments with environmental leadership awards in recognition of continual environmental improvement that goes beyond compliance with state and federal regulations.

The awards are open to all Colorado businesses, industries, offices, educational institutions, municipalities, government agencies, communities, nonprofits and other organizations. Organizations work through three levels of membership: Bronze, Silver and Gold.

City of Fort Collins departments winning 2017 awards on October 4 in Denver were Water Resources and Treatment Operations in Fort Collins Utilities; the Streets Department; and the Environmental Services Department.

Individual project awards at the Gold level, which is the top honor by the state:

Drake Water Reclamation Facility, which is responsible for the treatment of wastewater and biosolids recycling. The facility achieved the Silver level for a National Biosolids Partnership in 2015-2016 and has been listed as an environmental leader since 2013.

Achievements include:

  • Updated landscaping onsite using native drought-resistant plants to reduce watering.
  • Recycling diversion rate of 51 percent.
  • Year-to-date fuel reduction of 10 percent from 2015 to 2016.

Water Treatment Facility, provides high-quality drinking water with a capacity of 87 million gallons/day. The facility has been listed as an environmental leader since 2013.

Achievements include:

  • Reached milestone of reducing purchased electrical power by 30 percent over 2005 baseline.
  • Avoided generating 97 tons of greenhouse gases through use of renewable energy (solar), which offsets 84 percent of greenhouse gas emissions from fuel usage in vehicles.
  • Diverted 13,236 pounds of scrap metal from the landfill.
  • Replaced one old fuel-inefficient vehicle with a plug-in electric and a second with a hybrid vehicle.

Streets Department, which maintains a 557-centerline-miles street network that includes a recycling/crushing facility that processes and recycles concrete and asphalt for re-use on public and private projects.

Achievements include:

  • 16.5 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions since 2005.
  • Diverted 237 million pounds of asphalt, concrete and soil from the landfill by processing for reuse.

At the Silver level:

Mulberry Water Reclamation Facility, which is a six million gallon/ day wastewater treatment plant that utilizes biological nutrient removal to treat domestic, commercial and industrial wastewater and return it to the environment.

Achievements include:

  • MWRF is a chemical free plant (no chlorine treatment) and odor control is achieved with air, wood media and carbon filters made from coconut husks.
  • By adjusting air usage in the treatment process, the facility has saved on electricity use.

At the Bronze level:

Environmental Services Department, part of the Sustainability Services Area, for its Fugitive Dust Ordinance.

Achievements include:

  • Trained 85 contractors best management practices for fugitive dust.
  • Conducted the first presentation on best management practices for fugitive dust to local university students.
  • Required additional best management practices beyond state compliance.
  • Resolved 50 dust complaints through training and outreach from 2016 to 2017.

For a full list of Colorado honorees and more information on the awards, go to https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/cdphe/environmental-leadership-program.