Taking the time to help a person or animal in need

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Facilities Management Environmental Services recommendations and advice from our teams in the field.  Check back often for updates!

Taking the time to help a person or animal in need
Written By: Whirlwind Clean & Green Team ~ 9/12/2019

Taking the time to help a person or animal in need… We would like to celebrate an amazing team member who saved a baby eagle which fell out of its nest recently. Kerstyn stopped on the road and tried to get wildlife rescue out but in the end, she drove the baby eagle to a rescue center where it could be taken care of until it can make it on its own in the wild again. We are very proud of her actions on this day and celebrate her day to day dedication to our company and our clients as well!!

She does a great job every day for Whirlwind keeping properties clean and addressing emergencies of all sizes—she enjoys music of all kinds anything from George Jones to Ac/DC. She enjoys free time with friends and family but when it's time to relax her quiet time is spent with her foster pets, giving them all the love and attention, they deserve. Working at Whirlwind Clean & Green has been a great journey, and she said she is blessed to be working with an amazing group of people, “I have had some once in a life time encounters, from a baby bald eagle in the middle of the road, to shoveling 16 inches of snow in a blizzard. My time at whirlwind has been more than a job it's been an adventure”. Thank you for all you do for Whirlwind and your community, Kerstyn!

 


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Protect local streams, the Puget Sound, Fish, and Orcas
Written By: Whirlwind Clean & Green Team ~ 8/29/2019

Tymco600_09062018s.jpgSweeper09062018s.jpgOne of the EPA’s #1 recommended Best Management Practice is to sweep to reduce the amount of pollutants entering local rivers, lakes, and streams. Sweeping with Regenerative Air Vacuum Trucks is one of the best BMP’s for Stormwater as the air used to gather the material isn’t redistributed back into the air. Any trash, sediment, heavy metals, hydrocarbons, oil, rubber from tires, and grease are all pollutants reduced to help the environment. It is also 1/3 the cost of cleaning these pollutants out of these storm system devices with vactor trucks once it ends up in catch basins, vaults, swales, and ponds.

RetailPressureWashing09062018s.jpgAfter sweeping pressure washing can get all the tough grease and oil spots that may be left to get a really deep clean on your parking lots and sidewalks. Pressure washing is especially important around all dumpsters and grease enclosures. When pressure washing water should be reclaimed and properly disposed of, as soaps, detergents, or any other chemical can’t go into the storm system. We also suggest placing landscape fabric over all storm grates to stop debris from washing into the drains, this will eliminate future maintenance costs of having your drains cleaned.

SpillRevised09062018s.jpgCleaning out your storm drains before the influx of water we get with fall rain is very important as you get all the oil, dirt, and debris out of the drains before the water comes through and washes it into local waterways such as streams, rivers, and lakes. The best way to clean out storm drains is with a vactor truck. Another measure is to install catch-basin filters or to clean them if they are already installed. The filters sit in the lid of catch-basins and filter out key contaminants and pollutants from stormwater runoff.

BigstockSockeyeSalmon09062018s.jpgOrcas09062018s.jpgOnce oil, dirt, and debris get into local waterways they can harm the fish as well as other plants and animals in the waterways and near them. There have been studies on the effect of stormwater runoff on Coho salmon and it concluded that one or more substances in the runoff causes mortality. When fish populations are down other animals higher up in the food chain suffer as well. Orcas in particular are struggling throughout the world and the Puget Sound as they eat salmon, mainly chinook, which has a dwindling population. This makes the already endangered Orcas very stressed over food causing them to not have a successful birth in over 3 years. Toxins and vessel traffic are also believed to be responsible for the hardship of these whales as Orcas carry the highest levels of pollution of any marine animal.

SalmonMap09062018s.jpgFish will be coming up the ladders soon and will be able to be seen jumping up the streams, we don't want to see them jumping through a film of oil though. Help protect our fragile environment in the Northwest. Call or email us today for a free estimate for sweeping, pressure washing, or our vactor services to keep contaminants out of your storm drains and local waterways.

 

 

 

 


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Facilities Teams Can Help Sustain a Healthy Planet
Written By: Whirlwind Clean & Green Team ~ 8/16/2019

The 2018 Yale Climate Opinion Map showed that 70 percent of people in the United States believe that protecting the environment is more important than growing the economy. The facilities management industry definitely plays a part in protecting the environment. Globally, the industry was reported to be worth almost $35 billion in 2018 and is forecasted to knock on the door of $60 billion before 2024.

These are some pretty hefty numbers that indicate a laser focus on the facilities industry by not only the government but consumers and fellow citizens alike. With the Environmental Protection Agency, EPA, firmly dedicated to supporting those policies and processes that help keep the world clean and sustainable, the way organizations treat their landscaped areas, parking lots and more must be up to EPA standards to avoid painful penalties.

In 2017 alone, offenders of environmental laws dished out almost $2 billion to pay fines and indemnities. Many guilty parties were required to do time in jail with sentences totaling over 150 years served. By these numbers alone, it’s clear that a commitment to the environment by the facilities management industry and its professionals is pivotal in helping to ensure a long and healthy life.

It all sounds like a huge challenge to continue to stay ahead of what may be harming the environment and to be doing such work all for the good of mankind. Things don’t get much bigger than that, however, there are many quick and easy things that can be done to help support environmental sustainability.

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Here are a just a few simple ways to make a positive impact:

Keep the facilities team up to date on all current environmental compliance laws. The EPA offers direction on obtaining accredited certifications and their website is an excellent resource. Encourage the team to proactively stay on top of industry best practices to create an informed, engaged and empowered team that creates positive change.

Put time into choosing mulch, whether it’s being used for high-end landscape maintenance at the statehouse or when there’s a drought and only two to three inches of mulch is needed over soil to keep it cool and protected from the sun. The University of Massachusetts Amherst did a study revealing that wood recycled from garbage and used in some mulch contains dangerous chemicals. One of the contaminants found was CCA, chromated copper arsenate, which has harmful compounds such as arsenic.

Be smart and about water conservation. Conserving water can be as simple as fixing leaks and updating old equipment or get more complex when considering the installation of more modern water management equipment. Seeking the advice of facilities management professionals, or outsourcing some of the more complicated work to a third-party are helpful options to consider as well.


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