November 7, 2016
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PNNL, UW and WSU pledge closer collaboration

When most people think of public research institutions, the University of Washington and Washington State University spring to mind. Fortunately, Washington is also home to another publicly-funded institution that conducts research for the greater good: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL).

Last week, the ties between those three institutions grew stronger as they signed a joint memorandum of understanding to increase research collaborations on complex challenges and provide additional research and training opportunities for students in the state.

PNNL and the two universities already collaborate on several research efforts. Recently, the three institutions were selected to host a federal-state clean energy test bed project designed to develop and demonstrate the technologies needed to create smart buildings, campuses and cities which better manage energy use. The Transactive Campus project is building on previous collaborations between the three institutions in the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration Project, whose results are helping create a more efficient and effective power grid.

One important outcome of the new agreement will be to increase the number of joint or dual appointments among the three institutions. This will give students and interns opportunities to conduct research they might not be able to do otherwise. It will also bring more science and engineering graduates to PNNL.

Read more here.

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Focus on Sustainability

Boeing, Alaska Air lauded for leadership in reducing greenhouse gas emissions

By Andrew McIntosh, The Puget Sound Business Journal.

Two of Puget Sound's biggest aerospace companies are working hard to cut emissions as part of the regional efforts to combat climate change, a new report says.

Boeing Co. and Alaska Air Group each adopted a series of small but important measures that can make a difference, according to a new Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce report.

Entitled "Bright Green in an Emerald City," the report lists dozens of examples of emission-reduction efforts at companies, a university and some non-profits.

Boeing and Alaska Airlines are praised for developing shorter, more precise routes for incoming aircraft traffic flying into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport... Every Sea-Tac flight using such approaches conserves an average of 87 gallons of fuel, and saves passengers nine minutes of flying, the Seattle Chamber's report said.

Greenhouse gas emissions reduced with each of these flights equals to what a small car would use, driving all the way from Seattle to Minneapolis, the report added.

Read the full story in The Puget Sound Business Journal
The Risks of I-732

Collaborate, don't regulate carbon

By AWB President Kris Johnson

Washington state employers are proven leaders and innovators in energy conservation, carbon reduction and environmental efforts.

The record proves this is already taking place without a carbon tax, but rather through innovation and collaboration.

Washington's population has increased 43 percent since 1990 and the economy has grown 260 percent, yet carbon emissions are down 18 percent, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

From small operations to large steel mills, companies have built sustainability and environmental stewardship into their operations, not as an afterthought.

Despite this solid environmental record, voters will be faced with a choice to raise the cost of energy -- the engine that keeps Washingtonians moving and warm -- through Initiative 732. It would put in place a carbon tax under the guise of doing what employers and residents are already doing -- lowering carbon emissions. But, it is not without risk to the economy, K-12 education and our low- and fixed-income neighbors...

Read the full op-ed in The Puget Sound Business Journal
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