Crown recognized by Ohio EPA for environmental stewardship

Lift truck maker receives sustainability award for third year in a row.
By Modern Materials Handling Staff
December 16, 2010 - MMH Editorial

Crown Equipment Corp., a leading forklift manufacturer, was recently recognized for its sustainability efforts by earning Ohio’s annual award for Outstanding Achievement in Environmental Stewardship. Crown’s New Knoxville, Ohio, manufacturing facility received the award for accomplishing zero landfill waste output and achieving ISO 14001 Certificate of Registration. This is the third year Crown has received the award for its sustainability initiatives. 

During a ceremony at the Ohio Statehouse, Chris Korleski, director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, recognized Crown’s commitment to minimizing waste, managing energy and maximizing lifespan. Crown is one of only two winners selected from a number of Ohio corporations, nonprofit organizations and state government agencies.

Winners of the award are selected based on a sound track record of environmental compliance and a commitment to go above and beyond regulations to improve environmental performance; a mature Environmental Management System that has been integrated into core business functions; aggressive environmental performance goals; and a process for communicating with the local community about program activities and progress on performance goals.

“These award winners employ forward-thinking individuals and have developed innovative concepts for waste reduction and prevention that can serve as examples for other manufacturing facilities,” Korleski said. “They have shown a commitment to being good environmental stewards, protecting Ohio’s environment and natural resources, increasing company efficiency and improving the quality of life and the environment in local communities.”

Crown was previously honored by the Ohio EPA in 1992 and 2008, and has been recognized at the federal level in 2004 and 2005 as part of the U.S. EPA’s Waste Minimization Partner and National Partnership for Environmental Priorities programs, respectively.

Crown’s New Knoxville, Ohio, facility achieved zero landfill status in late 2009. The 40,000-square-foot facility, which manufactures electric motors and plastic parts, recycles 96% of its waste. The remaining four percent (less than 1 ton per month) is converted into energy at a state-of-the art, waste-to-energy facility. Crown was also able to reduce plant usage by six percent. Additionally, the New Knoxville plant now uses 30 percent recycled-content paper and environmentally friendly cleaners. The facility later received ISO 14001 certification in January 2010.

“One of the most important steps in achieving zero landfill status and receiving ISO 14001 certification is creating an open channel for internal communication. To a great extent, achieving these types of goals depends on the level of employee buy-in and involvement,” said Brian Duffy, director of corporate environmental and manufacturing safety at Crown Equipment Corporation. “This award could not have been achieved without the hard work and dedication of the New Knoxville plant employees. They took ownership of the initiative and kept the momentum going.”

Tonja Hardin, Crown Environmental Administrator, accepted the award on Crown’s behalf, along with plant employees Troy Flenar, Paula Fischer and Dorothy Winter.

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