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Environmental concerns dominate 40th annual meeting.

"The pressure to meet federally mandated regulations for waste management has never been greater than it is now, and it's not going to get any better in the future. It is down now to a choice between compliance or stiff fines-and possibly jail."

With these words, Gary Mosher, AFS director of environmental affairs, told attendees of the AFS Northwest Regional Conference held February 28March 2 in Seattle, Washington, that governments at all levels are focusing more intently on measures to control storm water runoff, air quality and solid waste. Regulators see themselves ast guardians of the environment at any cost as long as those costs are borne by industry and not by the public. he said.

"For almost a decade, there have been penalties for wilful violators of waste disposal regulations and safe working conditions," Mosher said, "but the federal government, in particular, wants to increase violation penalties. In pending legislation, fines would jump to $500,000 and jail terms would be increased to five years. If foundries don't take safety and health issues seriously now, the regulations are ready to go after offenders regardless of size and their sting will hurt."

Mosher cited storm water runoff responsibility as an example of regulations that industrial plants must bear. If a plant has large yards. private roads. parking areas. shipping and receiving docks, than it must control and treat storm water runoff streams exactly as any other potentially hazardous waste product.

He also stressed w importance of keeping accurate records of everything that a plant uses, disposes, produces and stores. Mosher cautioned plants to maintain detailed employee health records because ft burden of proof in legal actions often hinge on medical histories, work performed and company safeguards.

Because foundries are considered major pollution sources, conscientious record keeping applies to all disposal activities, airborne toxics and plant operating conditions. The government's goal is to reduce air pollution 90% and general pollution 50% by 1995 by mandating that industry install the maximum available control technology (MACT), Mosher said.

Walter Kiplinger, AFS vice president for government affairs, said that U.S. industry is dealing with a crisis-oriented Conress that is trying to deal with war, inflation, S&L problems, and a wide range of other domestic demands. Although such issues have shifted attention away from the environment, they won't upstage environmental concerns for much longer, he added.

Stating that many congressmen don't understand the metalcasting industry, Kiplinger advised foundrymen to educate their legislators. He also recommended that foundry people work through congressional staff people because they have the real power to shape legislation.

Daniel Oman, vice president, RMT, Inc., used various case studies to illustrate that the best way to approach environmental problem is to set objectives to be achieve compliance within clearly defined parameters.

Objectives would include establishing a specific implementation date for waste control projects, and setting realistic compliance budgets and long-term monitoring objectives for conservation efforts. Such actions, he said, would spark internal cooperation, satisfy a regulatory agency's need for positive action and create public awareness of waste control efforts.

The problem that spent sand pose for foundries were addressed by William Rosentreter. CEO, Otto Rosentreter Co. Sand reclamation is one of the best solutions to the dilemma of escalating disposal costs of hauling, treating and dumping spent sand, he said. Rosentreter also described some of the latest equipment for reclaiming green and core sand. He added that reclaimed sand is useful as a core-making material and as a substitute for new sand for mold facing.

Waste minimization was discussed by Charles Ruud, quality and environmental affairs manager, American Steel Foundries. He listed the three essentialsprevention, recycling and treatment as the keys to cost-effective waste management. Waste management could be accomplished through equipment modification, proper equipment maintenance and substituting hazardous material with nonhazardous ones, he said.

Jerry Agin, AFS chairman, vice president of sales/marketing, Hill and Griffith Co., and the keynote conference speaker, discussed the characteristics of leadership, linking them to the future of the foundry industry in North America. He said it is the obligation of today's leaders to develop the potential of people, allowing them to succeed or fail. He said the goal of the leader is to develop in his followers the vision, conviction and determination that lets them cope with new ideas and problems. This, Again said, lets them discover new solutions that reflect the concerns, trust and tolerance of a new generation of followers.
COPYRIGHT 1991 American Foundry Society, Inc.
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Copyright 1991, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Title Annotation:AFS Northwest Regional Conference
Author:Kanicki, David P.
Publication:Modern Casting
Date:May 1, 1991
Previous Article:Lack of market data concerns suppliers.
Next Article:Washington conference emphasizes foundry industry involvement.

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