Environmental Health & Safety
GEC helps clients achieve and maintain regulatory compliance, including auditing, permitting, reporting, employee training, program development, assisting with accident investigation and enforcement support.
GEC provides clients with options. We focus on their specific needs, customizing programs and delivering innovative solutions. Services include regulatory analysis, evaluation of alternatives, and design of best management practices. We build on existing systems, adding only in areas that require more attention; clients can begin using programs immediately. Engineering analysis, training programs, Environmental Management Systems, and regulatory risk reduction programs are also available.
GEC helps companies reduce long-term liability by reducing worker exposure to harmful chemicals; better managing air, water, and waste streams; complying with shipping regulations; and ensuring workers have up-to-date skills and training. GEC involves key management, uses existing management systems, and enhances programs where gaps exist. During the process, GEC guides clients through the environmental regulations, program development, auditing and reporting. Our extensive experience yields best practices and how to easily integrate them into current operations.
GEC develops cradle-to-grave waste management systems, and advises clients on pollution prevention and waste minimization techniques, that minimize risk and save money. We review generator status, audit satellite and accumulation areas for compliance. By conducting audits and inspections, compliance issues are identified and corrected early. GEC investigates material reduction potential such as substitution, which may enable the facility to reduce its generator status, and lower cost and risk.
Many facilities use fuel-burning boilers, ovens, fuel storage tanks, solvent coating manufacturing operations, parts cleaning sinks, printers, dry cleaners, and other processes that require air permits. GEC helps clients with source registration and emissions reports to regulatory agencies. We also assist with emergency incidents, such as a spills or abatement device malfunctions. GEC incorporates new equipment or processes when facilities expand.
Construction often requires a stormwater permit. GEC helps clients avoid project delays and penalties with a thorough understanding of stormwater permits, including the latest design methodologies needed to meet requirements. Our team has worked on various types of construction projects requiring storm water permits, enabling our clients to meet their construction deadlines while maintaining compliance.
Stormwater pollution prevention plans are frequently required for industrial facilities where operations involve large outdoor areas (e.g., scrap metal, auto salvage, sand & gravel, marinas, precast concrete products, etc.). GEC has help many clients achieve their compliance goals.
DOT / IATA / FAA
Transportation of chemicals is highly regulated to manage associated risk. The Department of Homeland Security, Department of Transportation, and Federal Aviation Administration review all aspects of hazardous materials transportation. GEC reviews clients’ shipping, handling, and packaging procedures and makes recommendations for improvement. Our hazardous materials expertise ensures that shipping procedures meet regulatory requirements.
GEC provides comprehensive initial training and periodic refresher training to meet customer demands and schedules, by customizing training material, incorporating clients’ own hazards, chemicals, and wastes to make classes more relevant. Delivering classes at the client facility reduces downtime.
Permits & Reports
Most facilities require a variety of permits to operate in compliance, and they must also file periodic reports to satisfy the regulations. GEC identifies which permits apply, completes permit applications, and prepares periodic regulatory reports, such as wastewater discharge monitoring reports, Source Registration & Emission Inventory Reports, TRI Form R & TURA Form S reports, EPCRA Tier II Annual Reports, and many more.
GEC provides auditing for a variety of clients. Our audit capabilities range from targeted, topic-specific inspections to wall-to-wall compliance inspections. Audits often accompany due diligence evaluations during mergers or acquisitions. We understand manufacturing processes, and can pinpoint hazards and risks, to identify deficiencies or regulatory non-conformances, enabling managers to make informed business decisions. As facilities grow, subsequent audits may be appropriate to assure that compliance programs are up-to-date.
Federal, state and local rules define requirements for hazardous materials. Hazardous materials must be managed carefully from order placement, during transport and receipt, while storing and handling them, and through waste disposal. GEC works closely with clients to identify Best Management Practices (BMPs), review new chemicals prior to ordering, and explain the hazards, risks, and impacts on employees and waste streams. Companies that follow proactive compliance strategies and BMPs have fewer surprises when new chemicals enter their facilities. Most new chemicals trigger the need to train employees about potential hazards, proper protection, and safe handling.
Environmental Management Systems
Management systems provide an effective framework of processes and procedures to ensure an organization achieves its objectives. These systems, initially designed for quality control (e.g., ISO 9000) were expanded to assure environmental health and safety compliance. Management systems include accountability, a schedule for activity completion, management of change, auditing tools for corrective actions, and continuous improvement. GEC analyzes current processes from top to bottom to develop management systems. We provide training to assure that management systems satisfy business objectives.
Safety and health are critical issues for every organization. Workers are a company’s most valuable asset. A management system assures employees, customers, suppliers, stakeholders, and the community that a company cares enough to do everything in its power to reduce health and safety risks. GEC can help minimize those risks.
Most accidents can be prevented. GEC has experience with most hazards that lead to workplace accidents, exposures, injuries, near-misses and illnesses. Our team develops and implements accident prevention programs in manufacturing and construction settings. A well-managed return-to-work program can lower insurance premiums and increase the morale and productivity of both the injured worker and their co-workers.
Company safety programs can lower insurance premiums and increase productivity. GEC assists clients by assessing workplace hazards and risks of injury, reviews past injuries and their causes, applicable OSHA regulatory programs, and identifies gaps. Then, we recommend modified procedures, processes, and equipment to lower overall risk. Our team has a variety of tools to improve workplace safety.
GEC develops customized training programs to clients from hospitals to manufacturers. Many companies use refresher training to review accident history, workplace hazards, near-misses, chemical handling, operating and management procedures, maintenance operations, and discuss what works best and what needs improvement. GEC develops site-specific training programs to complement clients’ existing programs by reviewing operations, interviewing key employees, and analyzing company records. Customized on-site training incorporating the facility’s own chemicals and process equipment is available.
Exposure to chemical hazards in the workplace can be detrimental. OSHA requires employers to disclose job hazards, educate employees on how they can protect themselves, and provide a safe work environment. When chemicals are present, overexposure is often a risk. GEC helps clients determine safe levels of exposure, and evaluate whether employees are being overexposed; and if so, works cooperatively to implement engineering and administrative controls to protect employees. GEC involves employers and employees at every step to develop workable solutions.
Audits & Inspections
GEC conducts workplace audits to identify hazards and propose cost-effective solutions to reduce risk of accidents and injuries. We work with safety committees or train them to take over the safety program themselves, enabling them to conduct future audits internally. GEC is experienced with OSHA inspections and can educate companies on what to expect and how to prepare for an OSHA visit.
The safe handling of chemicals decreases exposure, prevents injuries, and lowers employer costs. GEC assists in evaluating and mitigating hazards. Through proactive evaluation and training, we help clients improve worker safety, decrease downtime, and reduce regulatory risk.
GEC attended a meeting where an EPA representative relayed his experiences inspecting, purging, and inspecting, and organizing chemicals stored in science labs within schools throughout Massachusetts. His team, consisting of trained interns, found cabinets overstocked with unneeded chemicals, mercury thermometers, and numerous hazards. The team collected, assembled and inventoried all chemicals, and mercury thermometers. Chemicals were evaluated for container condition, hazard class, volume on hand, curriculum needs as compared to normal high school science and chemistry requirements and then either entered into a database, returned to inventory, organized, or staged for disposal. Unnecessary chemicals were lab-packed off-site, and properly disposed. A chemical inventory database was created that will serve as a useful tool for future chemical purchases, waste disposal, issuing chemicals, accountability, and tracking usage of all chemicals. The chemical team also measured and checked laboratory fume hood exhaust performance, and safety showers and eyewashes, often finding inoperable or inaccessible equipment. In the end, schools ended up with safer labs, educated faculty and staff, an in-house champion to carry-on after the EPA team was gone, and tools and equipment for improved chemical safety and control. Their motto: "Do No Harm to Our Children." Their offer to help schools in need is still open to anyone who cares to partner with them. Seems like a pretty good deal! Contact GEC for details.