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GP mill wins environmental excellence award

Tom Evans, Brewton power and recovery; Jim Hannan, GP CEO; Roberto Flores, Brewton environmental manager; Bob Diercks, Brewton EH&S manager; and Randy Holland, Brewton environmental department accept the GP Environmental Award.

The Georgia-Pacific Brewton mill has won the company’s 2009 Environmental Excellence Award for its air emission project.

Company CEO Jim Hannan presented the award to mill employees last week.

The Brewton mill was recognized for the results of a cross-functional team’s achievement in improving air emissions. Though the mill operated within both permit limits and historical normal emission ranges, employees believed there was room for improvement. The process they put in place reduced visible emissions by more than 70 percent from 2008 to 2009. To date in 2010, the mill has not had any visible emissions.

In addition to the GP award, the mill received the Koch Industries Environmental Health and Safety Excellence Award for Environmental Excellence. Brewton mill representatives accepted the Koch award in Atlanta in March.

“The mill project to reduce visible emissions is a good indicator of the support our employees have for Georgia-Pacific’s commitment to the environment, our community and continually improving our operations,” said Jeff Joyce, general manager of the Brewton mill. “The work this team has done is a great example of striving for environmental excellence and we are all very proud of this accomplishment.”

The GP Environmental Excellence Awards are presented annually to company facilities or business groups to recognize outstanding environmental achievement. Entries are evaluated using a variety of criteria, including resource conservation, reduction of environmental impact, innovation, cost effectiveness, employee involvement, community benefit and overall program excellence.

“This project is an excellent example of how Georgia-Pacific employees are using innovative approaches to help reduce our environmental impact and be a sustainable business,” Hannan said. “We are committed to continuous improvement in our environmental performance. Our Environmental Excellence Awards help us recognize projects and programs that are leading the way.”