The primary goal of WAPA’s pollution prevention program is to reduce or eliminate the generation of waste and associated adverse environmental impacts from its actions. WAPA also supports the Department of Energy’s pollution prevention goals. Our annual waste generation and pollution prevention report documents WAPA’s efforts to advance the DOE’s program.
Listed below are several approaches WAPA uses to meet pollution prevention goals:
Waste minimization/product substitution/life cycle analysis
Waste minimization reduces waste streams at the source and recycles items that cannot be eliminated or reduced. Product substitution replaces the use of toxic materials with less hazardous alternatives wherever possible (for example, using non-chlorinated cleaners instead of chlorinated solvents). Life cycle analysis evaluates the costs of using hazardous materials and potential alternatives over the life of the investment or the hazardous material. The annual cost of a product, including capital costs, installation, operating, maintenance and disposal costs are discounted over the lifetime of the product.
Recovered material content purchasing
The Federal Affirmative Procurement program requires certain purchased products to contain recovered material. WAPA’s procurement department takes steps to ensure that it purchases products meeting these standards.
Bio-based products purchasing
The DOE Office of the Biomass Program is urging all DOE organizations and contractors to be “early adopters” of the Buy Bio Program. Modeled on Affirmative Procurement, the program will require certain purchased products to be made from plant- or crop-based resources. Currently, compliance with Buy Bio is voluntary.
For new facilities and modifications to existing facilities, WAPA: 1) conducts sustainable design baseline reviews and develop management plans, 2) provides sustainable design training and 3) applies sustainable design to projects.
Sustainable design principles include high-efficiency heating and cooling, proper insulation, maximum use of recovered content building materials, low-maintenance and environmentally efficient landscaping, and environmentally friendly equipment (for example, sulfur-hexafluoride (SF6)-insulated equipment rather than oil-filled equipment in sensitive locations).
Green Power Purchases (hydroelectric, solar and wind)
The same hydroelectric power that WAPA markets from Federal projects also powers many of our substations and switchyards. Upon request, WAPA supplies renewable electrical energy to Federal agencies and installations at their expense.
Our administrative and maintenance service center offices receive electrical power from local electrical suppliers and renewable energy projects. The Headquarters office purchases wind power from our utility, and the Desert Southwest, Rocky Mountain and Sierra Nevada regional offices have solar arrays on site.