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L & J of New England, Inc.

April 12, 2010

L & J of New England, Inc. Recognized for Environmental Leadership

Public, Private Partnership Helps Small Business Stay Competitive

L&J

LOWELL, Mass. – At a ceremony today, representatives of the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) Program and state dignitaries presented L & J Manufacturing of New England in Worcester with an award to acknowledge the company’s environmental leadership in Massachusetts.

L & J Manufacturing, a metal finishing supplier for the manufacturing industry, has taken a long-term proactive approach to reducing toxic chemical use by working with the State’s Office of Technical Assistance since 1989. Today, the company is one of 17 being recognized by the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA) Program as a “TURA 20th Anniversary Leader.” The awards and facility tours are intended to showcase environmental accomplishments — use of safer materials, water conservation and energy savings — since the Toxics Use Reduction Act was enacted by the Massachusetts legislature in 1989.

“We selected L & J Manufacturing because of the company’s outstanding environmental and financial achievements that resulted from a willingness to work together to analyze business processes and identify safer technologies and materials,” said Rick Reibstein, manager of outreach and policy at the TURA program’s Office of Technical Assistance that provides free, confidential onsite assistance to Massachusetts companies.

By using less hazardous chemicals for more than 15 years, L & J has improved employee safety and increased profitability due to saving tens of thousands of dollars yearly in chemical and permitting costs. For instance, the company has replaced the solvent ethylene glycol monobutyl with a safer chemical, reducing the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) by 20,000 lbs. at a savings of $23,000.

“We’re a small company and don’t have a lot of resources to do this work,” said Duncan Leith, owner and president of L & J Manufacturing, an employer of 30 people.  “So when the state government says they are here to help, we very much appreciate it because we want to do the right thing. The Office of Technical Assistance has helped us find safer chemicals and change some of our processes as well as stay ahead of the regulatory and penalizing agencies. Without a doubt, these activities have played a major role in keeping us in business.”

The Toxics Use Reduction Act was expanded in 2006 to include water conservation — and L&J Manufacturing has achieved significant improvements in this area as well. By implementing filtration and flow-control systems, the company is saving $10,000 annually in water use.

The Toxics Use Reduction Act does not ban chemical use but requires companies to evaluate toxic chemical use, and submit usage reports and plans to the state. The plan assesses the financial implications of switching to safer alternatives or making changes in production. Since 1989, Massachusetts companies have voluntarily reduced toxic chemical use by 41 percent, waste by 71 percent and on-site releases by 91 percent.

About L & J of New England, Inc.

L & J of New England, founded in1969, provides protective and decorative finishing for the manufacturing industry. Located in Worcester, Mass., the family-owned business employs 38 people. For more information, visit www.ljne.com.

About the Toxics Use Reduction Act Program

Twenty years ago, the Massachusetts legislature passed landmark legislation—the Toxics Use Reduction Act (TURA). Today, the TURA Program is considered a model environmental policy by other states and countries. The three agencies below have provided training, grants, technical assistance and support to help companies reduce toxic chemical use and costs, improve health and safety and establish new green markets.

  •  Office of Technical Assistance & Technology (OTA). A non-regulatory agency within the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs that provides free, confidential, on-site technical and compliance consultations to Massachusetts businesses and institutions.
  •  Toxics Use Reduction Institute (TURI) at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. Provides education, training, and grants for Massachusetts industry and communities; sponsors research and demonstration sites on safer materials and technologies; provides policy analysis; and manages the TURA Science Advisory Board.
  •  Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP). Certifies Toxics Use Reduction (TUR) Planners, receives and reviews toxics use reports submitted by companies, provides guidance, takes enforcement actions, and collects chemical use data and makes it available to the public.
We’re a small company and don’t have a lot of resources to do this work. So when the state government says they are here to help, we very much appreciate it because we want to do the right thing. The Office of Technical Assistance has helped us find safer chemicals and change some of our processes as well as stay ahead of the regulatory and penalizing agencies. Without a doubt, these activities have played a major role in keeping us in business.
- Duncan Leith, owner and president of L & J Manufacturing