The Nevada Business Environmental Program (BEP) within the College of Business at the University of Nevada, Reno recently announced a new partnership with the Washoe County Health District Air Quality Management Division (AQMD). The partnership seeks to provide improved air-quality compliance and hands-on assistance for a wide range of businesses throughout the Washoe County area.
From supporting small businesses initially starting out or working with existing businesses hoping to expand their operations, the Nevada BEP helps business owners evaluate compliance and permitting requirements and develop environmental management strategies that minimize pollution to both reduce the business’s environmental footprint and reduce operating costs. Under this partnership, the Nevada BEP will provide residents and business owners with several benefits, including assistance with air quality regulations, permitting and registration, informative workshops and assistance with other air quality-related questions.
By working with the Nevada BEP, businesses are better prepared to navigate the requirements of regulatory agencies during the permitting process.
“We have a good sense of what the agencies are looking for,” Chris Lynch, director of the Nevada BEP, said. “If we work with businesses from the start of the permit application process, we can ensure they have everything they need in their application and can hopefully get through quicker.”
In addition to the recent partnership with the Washoe County AQMD, the Nevada BEP has also taken part in promoting environmental sustainability and climate strategies, improved waste management practices, preventing air pollution and spreading awareness to local businesses about how they can efficiently maintain an environmentally friendly operation.
The Nevada BEP is a statewide program initially established in 1988 that promotes the economic and community development mission of the university. “Back in 2017, the State Division of Environmental Protection came to me looking to expand BEP advisory services beyond hazardous waste and environmental sustainability to include air quality technical assistance and education to businesses in the state,” Lynch said.
It was this successful expansion of Nevada BEP’s advisory services into air quality with the NDEP that led to this new partnership with AQMD. Lynch described the partnership as a crucial way to serve the community and a beneficial opportunity for the Nevada BEP and the College of Business.
“We will be providing outreach, education and technical assistance within the business community,” Lynch said. “We will be available as a neutral third-party resource that businesses can come to with questions and help for both regulatory compliance and environmental air quality permits.”