Remarks by Vaidas V. Adamkus
                            U.S. EPA Region 5
                             Chicago, Illinois
                                    * * *
             Waste  Minimization and Combustion Roundtable
               Metcalfe  Federal Building, Chicago, Illinois
                              April 30, 1994
Good morning	
On behalf of EPA Region 5,1 would like to welcome you to the third in a series of four
regional roundtables on Waste Minimization and Combustion.
All of us —representatives of government, industry, environmental organizations,
citizen groups, and even private individuals'—are here today not because we couldn't
think of something else to do this Saturday. We are here because the subject is
serious, the issues are sensitive, and the time is ripe.
The whole spectrum of waste management—and especially combustion—is
surrounded by controversy, misunderstandings, mistrust, and outright public fear.  We
realize all the concerns and all the apprehensions and we are here today to do
something about them. Above all, we are here to listen.  To listen to your comments,
suggestions, personal experiences, and continued concerns, so that we could
hammer out a long-lasting and effective Waste Minimization and Combustion Strategy,
first proposed by EPA  last May.

Waste minimization, especially, is near and dear to our collective hearts at EPA
because it dovetails neatly with the absolutely top tenet of EPA policy—pollution
prevention. And pollution prevention comes from a simple but sobering realization: It
is easier, cheaper, and smarter to prevent pollution than to chase after pollutants once
they are out of the pipe or out of the smokestack.

An astute attorney general of Illinois,  by the name of Robert Green Ingersoll, observed
over a hundred years ago that, in nature, there are neither rewards nor punishments—
but there are consequences. And so, by our deliberations here today,  we will be doing
our part m helping to ensure that those consequences are always favorable, or at
loaot noutral.  It is of utmost importance-—and of great mutual interest—that we all	
work openly together for our common goal: the protection of our health we all value
and the preservation of the environment we all share.

We may not even reach an agreement today, but  we must begin. We must  begin by
laying a firm groundwork for what is to come. And today is a good a day as any.

So let me begin by introducing to you three key members of my staff who are here
today for the express purpose of listening to what you have to say:

First, there is Deputy  Regional Administrator Michelle Jordan.  She is new to
Region 5, but she is no novice when  it come to environmental matters.  A practicing

attorney for 16 years, she has 10 years of experience in environmental law. Michelle
has served as assistant Illinois attorney general and as chief of their Environmental
Control Division.  She has also served as a trial attorney in the Cook County state's
attorney's office.  And, just before joining the EPA, she was with a private Chicago law
firm for 3 years.

Next, I want you to meet Bill Muno, director of our Waste Management Division.
 A 20-year veteran of EPA, Bill is in charge of all hazardous and solid waste, all
underground storage tank, and all Superfund programs in the Region.  An engineer by
profession, he was tapped last year by the Organization for Economic Cooperation
and Development, to serve on a team that evaluated environmental programs in
Norway.  Among Bill's awards aro four EPA Bronze Medals for commendable service.

And now let me present Norm Niedergang, associate director of our Waste
Management Division and chief of our RCRA office. Norm joined us 15 years ago,
after serving with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. An environmental engineer
himself, Norm has made many significant contributions to our enforcement efforts in
both the RCRA and the Superfund programs.  He holds three EPA Bronze Medals for
commendable service.

And now it's time for me to yield the floor. Welcome, again, and thanks for your
generous support, which you have amply demonstrated just by being here today.

                          (Awards  Presentation)

 It is now my distinct pleasure to present the EPA Region 5 Special Waste Minimization
 Awards to three companies who have demonstrated that environmental awareness,
 innovative approaches, and bold corporate action are alive and well—at least here, in
 the great Midwest.
I salute the Enamel Products and Plating Company, of Portage, Indiana; the Chrome
Deposit Corporation, also of Portage, Indiana; and the Mead Packaging Division of
Enamel Products was the first company nationwide to join the EPA waste minimization
tests last year, followed shortly by Chrome Deposit.  Mead Packaging also joined, a bit
later, with the advantage of having already conducted a number of waste minimization
projects at its plant. All three formed close partnerships with EPA, and everyone
developed a can-do team spirit throughout the proceedings.  It remains a cooperative
effort truly worthy of being emulated far and wide throughout the land.
As I highlight each company's accomplishments, I would like the representative of that
company to step forward and grant me the honor of presenting the award.

Enamel Products and Plating Company, through changes in its process and
substitution of raw materials, cut the use of glycol ester by over 10,000 gallons, saving
more than $40,000 in 1992.  It also cut its annual wastewater discharges^ 92,000—
gallons, its energy consumption by 19 percent, and its water use by 5 million gallons.
Chrome Deposit Corporation, through process modifications and substitution of
raw materials, reduced its wastewater treatment sludges by 51 percent and saved over
$10,000 in disposal costs. It was also able to cut  wastewater by 43 percent.

Mead Packaging Division  has switched from polluting solvent-based inks to water-
based inks and has been recycling many of its nonhazardous wastes for some time,
including over 15 tons of steel banding.  I ft addition, a change in packaging of	
incoming inks is under way, which will eliminate the need to dispose of more than
1,000 plastic totes and drums.

My congratulations, once again, to all three companies for their corporate foresight
and their good corporate citizenship. May you continue to lead by example and may
you prosper by proving that a healthy balance sheet and a clean environment can go