by Rachel McIntosh-Kastrinsky
At last week’s Sustainable Fleet Technology Conference & Expo, the NC Clean Energy Technology Center presented Clean Air Carolina with the 2019 Mobile CARE Award (Organization Category). This award is given to an organization that has shown leadership in reducing transportation-related emissions in North Carolina. This can be achieved through educational efforts or through the enactment of internal practices and policies that reduce emissions. Clean Air Carolina was recognized for its Clean Construction Partnership and its work educating the public and important stakeholders (such as hospitals) on the importance of reducing emissions and improving air quality.
Hospitals should be a place we go to improve our health and recover. But whenever hospitals expand their facilities and campuses, diesel-powered construction equipment can become a major source of local air pollution, including particulate matter. Particle pollution has been shown to worsen numerous health issues, including heart disease, stroke, and asthma.
The Clean Construction Partnership works to reduce particulate matter in the air at construction sites, protecting the health of patients, visitors, hospital staff, and construction workers. Participating organizations are required to use EPA Tier 4 Low Emission construction vehicles and to reduce unnecessary engine idling. The Partnership currently includes Atrium Health, Novant Health, and the University of North Carolina Charlotte (UNC Charlotte).
“By [joining the Partnership], the University is contributing to improved air quality not only for members of the campus community but the greater public, too,” said Bart Bruchok of UNC Charlotte.