ISTC News Highlights

DOE-funded project to find beneficial uses for coal combustion wastes

coal fire power plant featuring emissions stacks at top of building

Scientists at the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) are beginning a $1 million, two-year project to find new and value-added uses for fly ash, a powdery remnant of burning coal. Confining the ash in vegetable oil will potentially reduce the amount of fly ash waste and lessen the risk of heavy metals from waste piles leaching into surface and groundwater.


‘Plastics don’t ever go away’—ISTC scientist John Scott studies impact of microplastics

disposable face masks

Plastic products permeate our environment and over time they break down. The microscopic size of particles, how long they last, and what is associated with them raise health concerns.


Solar-Powered Savings: Impacts of Net Zero Electricity at BEER NUTS

display of three classic Beer Nuts products: peanuts, cashews, and almonds

In fall of 2019, ISTC and their partners completed an Economy, Energy, and Environment (E3) assessment at BEER NUTS, a small, family-owned Illinois snack facility. At the company’s request, the assessment included the feasibility of on-site solar photovoltaics (PV).


Technical Assistance Program collaborates to connect surplus food with hunger relief agencies

extra produce

The University of Illinois, Feeding Illinois, the Illinois Specialty Growers Association, and the Illinois Farm Bureau are collaborating to collect and collate information on the locations, types, and quantities of “surplus” specialty crops in Illinois, including potential acquisition costs. Through a producer survey, a series of focus groups, and implementation of pilots across the state the team looks to uncover the optimal mix of incentives and program interventions to overcome the current barriers to efficient flows of fresh food produced in Illinois, to Illinois residents, with as little waste as possible.

See all of ISTC’s upcoming events.

 

 

The ISTC Quarterly newsletter keeps you up-to-date with information, research, and technical assistance developments that advance the responsible management of our natural resources and a healthy environment. Subscribe