UNIVERSITY PARK – The Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program was awarded $655,000 in grant funding from the Environmental Protection Agency and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to offer free energy and environmental assessments to businesses across Pennsylvania.
PennTAP is a federal-state-university partnership program at Penn State that was created to enhance economic development across the Commonwealth by addressing needs that will improve a company’s competitiveness.
Each award has separate requirements:
- The EPA grant for $180,000 will be used by PennTAP to assist Pennsylvania manufacturers in the food industry to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; projects will focus on the reduction of hazardous waste, efficient use of raw materials, energy, water and conserving natural resources.
- The Pennsylvania DEP awarded $475,000 in grant money to PennTAP to provide energy-efficiency assessments and technical assistance to small and mid-size manufacturers. Technical advisers will focus on source reduction by studying processes and taking measurements of equipment, materials and energy use.
- Funds from both grants will also be used to offer Penn State College of Engineering students hands-on training and work experience in businesses utilizing PennTAP’s services.
Jason Grentus, senior environmental engineer for JLG Industries Inc., worked with PennTAP to complete energy assessments focused on compressed air and lighting usage at the McConnellsburg plant.
“The professionalism of the staff and students have been unmatched,” Grentus said. “This allows us to spend more time gathering data, improving processes, and developing an energy management manual based on the International Organization for Standardization. Without the support and recommendations from everyone at PennTAP, we would not be where we are today.”
Tanna Pugh, director for PennTAP, said the funding will enable them to continue to offer Pennsylvania companies the expertise and assistance Penn State can provide — at no cost — rather than having to pay an outside source to have the assessments done.
“PennTAP provides customized recommendations based on an individual company’s needs,” Pugh said, and, “therefore giving third party, unbiased assessments to support our clients.”
For more information about PennTAP programs and how to apply for assistance, visit pennTAP.psu.edu.