"Sustainability has become a key initiative for Indiana," IDOC Commissioner Bruce Lemmon said. "We started by looking at efficiencies in our facilities' operations, and we see in recycling programs such as Putnamville's, that there are significant efficiencies to be found. These programs not only reduce the budget and make better use of resources, but also provide offenders with meaningful work that teaches them the value of sustainability and environmental awareness."
During an America Recycles Day presentation at the Vigo County Public Library, Trees Inc. board member Jane Santucci presented Putnamville Supt. Stanley Knight with the award, citing the Putnam County correctional facility's accomplishments.
"It is so great to see an organization like the Putnamville Correctional Facility take such a massive positive step toward sustainability," Santucci said.
Under the leadership of Supt. Knight, the Putnamville Correctional Facility continues the incorporation and expansion of environmentally friendly practices, sustainable initiatives and the use of "green energy" into everyday activities.
The conservation of electricity, water, natural gas and steam, along with use of wind energy have provided an unprecedented monetary saving for the facility and to the taxpayers of Indiana.
Some PCF examples:
-- A 10-kilowatt windmill supplies the facility's Training Department with daily power requirements.
-- The installation of water conservation system has reduced water consumption from 547,114 gallons per day to 236,493 gallons per day.
-- The installation of a biomass boiler has generated a $850,157 annual savings.
-- Upgrades and replacement of steam traps and pressure regulating valves have reduced the facility's steam load by 32 percent.
-- Recycling sales have generated an annual revenue of $58,000.
-- And the facility processes an average of 2,000 cubic yards of compost annually saving the facility approximately $35,000 per year.
Part of the compost is used to bed native Indiana flowers for seed that is used to plant along Indiana roadways, in Indiana State Parks and rest areas. Beautification of our state is not the only reason for maintaining a viable seed center at the facility, the planting of flowers aerates soil and deters soil erosion.
Overall, the prison's sustainability efforts have equated to an annual savings of more than $1 million for the facility and Indiana taxpayers.
"I attribute the success of our sustainability efforts to the support given by Commissioner Lemmon and to ISF staff and offenders who work diligently to make it a success," Supt. Knight said. "I extend my appreciation and thanks to everyone involved in the process and to Trees Inc. for recognition of our efforts and for this award."
Trees Inc. is a Terre Haute-based, non-profit organization founded in 1990 to encourage the planting of trees.
The environmental volunteer group has pledged its efforts toward replenishing the declining urban forest, educating citizens about the importance of maintaining existing trees, improving the environment, beautifying the community, and stimulating community participation and civic pride.