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RE: level of effort for mass balance?


We did a study for the Roundtable in conjunction with the Business Roundtable that looked at the costs and benefits of facility level and process level materials accounting.  There are two reports.  The Phase I report is not on the NPPR website, the Phase II is (http://www.p2.org/inforesources/index.cfm).  The Phase I report is probably more along the lines of what you are looking for.  I can email it to you if you like.


It also summarizes studies looking at tAt 03:13 PM 1/8/03 -0500, Burt Hamner wrote:
Thanks all for these interesting comments.  I should clarify our goal (thanks TF for asking).
The national environmental health agency regulates wastewater dischargers and imposes a fee for discharges.  They are interested in an approach that will encourage P2.  We suggested that they provide discounts based on improvement in management that will lead to P2, without requiring extensive technical TA and while providing maximum flexibility to business.  We are suggesting that firms begin with a process analysis of inputs and outputs so they can learn what exactly they are losing to the wastewater.  I used the term mass balance in my email to P2Tech without appreciation of the engineering history behind it.  In fact, here  we have been using the term "eco-balance", which is popular in Europe and for which we have some guidance tools. 
Of course we dont expect a full scale mass balance analysis from anyone, and thanks for the comments about how hard that can be.  I think that materials accounting or materials balance is a lot closer to what we want to promote.  My web search shows a lot more info about materials accounting than about eco-balance, so I think we might move in that direction since it will help the national agency think about making some links to the EPA and other orgs (Hey New Jersey, how about a field trip to Peru!) so they can get some more help on this.
I have been searching for a good manual on materials accounting on the web and have not come up with anything yet that can be downloaded.  Any suggestions?
I also found a very interesting analysis of materials accounting developed for national policy in Australia, it includes a survey of materials accounting around the world, comparisons of various methods, and lots of food for thought.  Of course if you consume the food you must account for the results...
Burt Hamner
-----Mensaje original-----
De: owner-p2tech@great-lakes.net [mailto:owner-p2tech@great-lakes.net]En nombre de Robert Pojasek
Enviado el: Miércoles, 08 de Enero de 2003 02:41 p.m.
Para: p2tech@great-lakes.net
Asunto: Re: level of effort for mass balance?

Maybe we have some engineers in government as well.  The RCRA reauthorization in the USA was going to require every facility with compliance issues in the USA to conduct a mass balance.  Fortunately, the National Academy of Engineers recommended against this (aren't they engineers?).  The Cleaner Production Centers UNIDO P2 protocol requires mass balance.  Burt talked about a government agency wanting to require mass balance in a program.  For the record, this is not "materials balance."  This was the point that I raised.  I think we are confusing these terms and the level of effort required to make the proper measurements. 

Bob Pojasek

Hi P2techies,

Thanks Melinda for the clarification of terms "mass" vs "materials" balance.  We have to help engineers we are training to relax a bit when they first hear about materials balance requirements in the Massachusetts program.  Burt's estimate is really pretty good, with more time needed to characterize the process for an external consultant new to the company or an EHS officer.  The three days certainly allows time to confirm the process diagram on the shop floor.  This is a key step in the planning requirement in this state because of discovery or materials, water, and energy lost -- and a loose but pretty good quantification of that loss.  It is highly motivating.

Janet Clark
Toxics Use Reduction Institute
University of Massachusetts
One University Ave
Lowell, MA 0`854-2866
Tel 978-934-3346, Fax 978-934-3050
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