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Volvo gets environmental award

November 26, 2006

Businesses for the Bay recently recognized Volvo Powertrain North America for its commitment to the environment.

Volvo Powertrain supplies engines for Mack Trucks Inc. and Volvo Trucks North America.

Maryland Gov. Robert Ehrlich presented the award for Outstanding Achievement for Pollution Prevention at a Large Facility to Volvo Powertrain officials at a ceremony sponsored by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Representatives also were honored with the Businesses for the Bay Environmental Excellence Award during the organization's annual meeting on Nov. 13 in Annapolis.

Businesses for the Bay is an organization that includes many businesses near the Chesapeake Bay that have made a commitment to help restore the health of the bay and its ecosystems.

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"Volvo takes the environment and its protection very seriously," Sten-ke Aronsson, senior vice president of Volvo Powertrain North America, said in a prepared release. "In fact, it is one of our company's core values.

"I am very pleased that efforts made to minimize our operation's impact on the environment as part of our day-to-day work processes have been recognized by Businesses for the Bay," he said. "We are committed to seeking ways of operating in the most environmentally sound manner possible and strive to be a leader in our industry with regard to environmental initiatives."

Aronsson said the Hagerstown facility in recent years has completed a variety of projects aimed at demonstrating Volvo's commitment to the environment.

In addition to an overall facility transformation, an environmental management system was implemented in 2002. This provided an organized system to help achieve the site objectives of reducing the facility's impact on the environment.

Specific steps were introduced to reduce energy consumption, waste generation and water use at the site:

The facility's heating system has been replaced with more efficient equipment, which has the ability to burn nonfossil fuels for heating.

Waste water from process equipment is treated at the site to recover clean, reusable water that can be used for industrial processes, such as equipment cooling.

Lighting fixtures have been replaced with more energy-efficient models, and the facility's roof was replaced with construction material that has a higher insulation value.

In addition, the Hagers-town facility's new Engine Development Laboratory not only features energy- efficient systems, but is the centerpiece for the development of new Volvo Powertrain products, such as cleaner diesel engines, and will also support research into alternative fuel sources.

"While all employees in Hagerstown are proud to celebrate these accomplishments, we are already planning more projects to increase waste recycling and are building on our environmental achievements," Aronsson said.

Businesses for the Bay (B4B) is a program of the Chesapeake Bay Program, managed by the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Inc., a 501(c)(3) environmental organization. B4B provides educational outreach, positive recognition and technical assistance to facilities to reduce their pollution to the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers.

B4B is the primary outreach vehicle to businesses for the Chesapeake Bay Program. The Chesapeake Bay Program partners include the states of Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware and New York, plus the District of Columbia; the Chesapeake Bay Commission, a tri-state legislative body; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and participating citizen advisory groups.

The Volvo Group is a publicly held company with headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden.

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