The Kentucky Department for Environmental Protection recognized six members of the Kentucky Excellence in Environmental Leadership (KY EXCEL) Program for outstanding efforts and activities that exemplify environmental excellence. One award was presented for each of the following project categories: Conservation, Environmental Education, Performance Improvement, Pollution Prevention, Restoration and Waste Reduction.
The 2022 KY EXCEL Beacon Award in Conservation was presented to Zeon Chemical’s campus in Louisville. Zeon Chemical has been partnering with TreesLousiville since 2017 to plant trees on their properties, and since 2021, has planted more than 30 trees. By planting trees, Zeon Chemical has helped to reduce urban heat island effect, improve aesthetics, and dissipate odors in an industrial area of West Louisville. Additionally, the trees provided shade in the company’s parking lot, which is greatly appreciated by guests and employees alike.
Sekisui S-Lec, America (SSA) in Winchester received the 2022 KY EXCEL Beacon Award in Environmental Education. SSA worked with a local nursey to donate tomato plants for approximately 400 child at Justice Elementary School. Students also received a booklet developed by SSA on how to grow a garden and the environmental benefits of gardening.
The Beacon Award in Performance Improvement was given to J.M. Smucker in Lexington. The company updated or replaced outdated equipment in an effort to reduce air emissions and meet or exceed Kentucky’s air quality permitting requirements.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky (TMMK) in Georgetown received the EXCEL Beacon Award in Pollution Prevention. TMMK modified an existing paint booth, replacing the micro sludge system with an out-of-service tank, eliminating the need for weekly cleaning, and reducing the corresponding CO2 emissions and water usage.
The Beacon Award in Restoration was given to Beam Suntory’s Old Grand-Dad facility in Frankfort. A dam located behind the facility and along Elkhorn Creek was removed, minimizing the chances of flooding and increasing the safety of members of the community that use the creek for recreation.
The Waste Reduction Award was presented to Maker’s Mark Distillery in Loretto. The distillery purchased a glass pulverizer to grind glass waste down to a sand consistency. The sand will be used on campus during construction projects, for trail aggregate, and will be provided to the local community. Additionally, Maker’s Mark is exploring partnerships to increase the recycled content of the glass in their bottles.
The KY EXCEL Program provides a networking opportunity for Kentucky’s environmental stewards and an avenue to develop environmental leaders. To view short videos about each of the 2022 Beacon Award Winners, or to learn more about the benefits of being a KY EXCEL member click here.