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FOUR CHEMICAL COMPANIES WIN GOVERNOR'S AWARDS

 HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Four of seven winners in the industrial class of the 1992 Pennsylvania Governor's Waste Minimization Awards are members of the Pennsylvania Chemical Industry Council (PCIC).
 PCIC Chairman Hermann Ortega released a statement commending the four firms for their outstanding commitment to environmental excellence.
 "We are very proud of the accomplishment of these firms. They provide a clear example of the chemical industry's goal of continuous improvement in environmental performance," said Ortega. The PCIC members who were winners of the competition are E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co.; Emigsville Plant, Merck and Co., Danville Plant; Drakenfeld Colors, Washington; and Aristech Chemical Corporation, Tarben Plant, Clairton.
 He cited the national Chemical Manufacturers Association's Responsible Care initiative -- a series of six self-imposed codes of chemical industry management practice -- at evidence the industry is turning things around from an environmental perspective.
 "The chemical industry has put a priority on safeguarding human health and the environment," Ortega said.
 According to state Department of Environmental Resource officials, the Governor's Waste Minimization Awards are given annually to firms that demonstrate waste reduction techniques. Judges also look at the economic impact of the award applicants' measures. Ortega said the PCIC member winners demonstrated considerable waste reductions and considerable financial savings. "We are proving that good environmental practices are good business practices," said Ortega.
 According to state documents, the Du Pont plant developed and patented new processes for cleaning and degreasing electric components saving an estimated $1.26 million annually. Merck & Co. was recognized for a project that eliminates the use methylene chloride -- a highly volatile suspected carcinogen -- in the synthesis of a component of the antibiotic PRIMAXIN. Merck & Co. reports that production cost savings from the change have already amounted to $7 million. Drakenfeld Colors installed new equipment to reduce and recover heavy metal wastes from its inorganic pigment and glass enamel coatings production. Aristech Chemical invented a new technology to remove benzene from coal tar that results from the making of coke for the steel industry. The coal tar is then used to make chemical products.
 PCIC provides ongoing training and professional networking to aid waste minimization and pollution prevention efforts.
 /delval/
 -0- 1/15/93
 /CONTACT: David Patti, executive director of the PCIC, 717-232-6681/


CO: Pennsylvania Chemical Industry Council ST: Pennsylvania IN: CHM SU:

CC-JS -- PH034 -- 5581 01/15/93 17:39 EST
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