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News Release
Lane County Fleet Services earns EcoBiz certification for pollution prevention - 07/09/24

Lane County Fleet Services, part of Lane County Government’s General Services Division, was recently certified via a voluntary state-supported program that recognizes government agencies and automotive repair and body shop businesses that adopt best practices to prevent and reduce hazardous waste, and air and water pollution.

 

Fleet Services—which provides vehicles, equipment, maintenance services, and fuel to County departments and several federal, state, and local partner agencies—recently earned EcoBiz Automotive Services Certification. 

 

Lane County’s EcoBiz (short for Eco-Logical Business) chapter is supported by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and managed by Eugene nonprofit BRING, which contracts with the City of Eugene Wastewater Division to implement the program within city limits. BRING provides technical assistance and resources to participating local businesses and government agencies, while the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the City of Eugene support and approve certifications. 

 

Additionally, BRING recently contracted with Oregon DEQ to expand its work to all Lane County automotive businesses.

 

While EcoBiz certification is free and voluntary, Fleet Services completed a lengthy checklist assessment of criteria to earn the distinction, including: 

 

  • Overhauling collection systems and labeling for various waste streams, including barrels containing oil, hazardous waste, and other materials to improve employee safety and better manage materials.
  • Formalizing several waste reduction policies, such as prohibiting chlorinated solvents, promoting the use of less toxic products, and limiting hazardous material purchases.
  • Servicing oil/water separators on-site to enhance wash bay drainage cleanliness and functionality, creating a regular schedule to maintain separators and servicing stormwater catch basins.
  • Conducting staff-wide training to improve knowledge about proper hazardous waste disposal and stormwater/spill prevention.
  • Improving spill containment practices by purchasing proper containment caddies and reducing the amount of storage barrels on the shop floor.

 

“It’s been an inspiring process assisting Fleet Services with this certification,” said Emily Reynolds, BRING rethink business coordinator. “Not only did they make important improvements to operations, equipment, and waste management systems, but leadership was also able to foster a culture shift around sustainability practices that protect the environment and their employees. We hope to show other local businesses that it can be easy to do the right thing. BRING can help take the guesswork out of sustainable practices.”

 

"Through our completion of the EcoBiz certification program, our team has become better equipped to manage spills, correctly dispose of hazardous waste materials, and reduce our environmental impact in simple but effective ways,” said Nathan Mitchell-Hooks, senior Public Works analyst. “BRING's supportive and knowledgeable staff was there to guide us at every step, ensuring we had the tools, contacts, and direction needed to make their recommended changes. We're proud to be able to call ourselves an EcoBiz-certified fleet, and would strongly encourage other organizations to inquire about the program."

 

Any Lane County organizations interested in EcoBiz certification can visit www.ecobiz.org to learn more.

 

About Lane County Fleet Services

Fleet Services is responsible for providing Lane County Government with a modern, well-equipped vehicle and equipment fleet that is maintained and utilized at the lowest reasonable cost while minimizing environmental impacts. Fleet Services provides vehicles, equipment, maintenance services, and fuel to County departments and several federal, state, and local partner agencies. Learn more at www.lanecountyor.gov.

 

About EcoBiz

EcoBiz, short for Eco-Logical Business, is a certification recognizing businesses in Oregon that adopt best practices and protect the environment. The free and voluntary program seeks to help participating organizations prevent and minimize hazardous waste and air and water pollution. Lane County’s EcoBiz Program is provided by BRING, and currently coordinates with automotive businesses (including general repair, body and paint, radiator repair, and car wash). For more information, visit www.ecobiz.org.

 

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Link to Lane County Fleet B-roll footage for media:

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1fM_Lh2g3RT-t4rjHa-EKS33o1SYaCNpN?usp=sharing

View more news releases from Lane Co. Government.