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DuPont Spruance Plant Wins Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence


The DuPont Spruance plant in Richmond, Va., was recently awarded the prestigious Virginia Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award during a ceremony at the 22nd Environmental Virginia Symposium at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Va.

The Spruance award was received for an innovative project in which a major waste stream was successfully reduced by approximately 400,000 pounds per year. The project consisted of identifying and working closely with a reclamation facility that could effectively process a major Kevlar® manufacturing waste stream.

Reductions in waste disposal and transportation costs from this project have resulted in a savings to the Kevlar® business. In addition, the Kevlar® business has gained a revenue source for the value of the solvent reclaimed. The significant reduction in transportation mileage has netted a reduction in greenhouse gases and hazardous combustion byproducts. Additionally, about 400,000 pounds per year of a usable product has now been made available.

According to Charles Bigby, project manager, approximately 65% of this material, a widely-used organic solvent, now is being reclaimed and sold as a product.

“The remainder of this former waste stream also is being utilized for fuel blending for firing a commercial kiln,“ Charles said. ”The ash produced led to the reclamation of a major portion of a Kevlar® manufacturing unit waste stream. This is a big win for environmental protection and energy conservation, as well as a source of revenue for our Kevlar® business"

The Spruance Plant continues to qualify as a member of the Virginia Environmental Excellence Program at the “E4” level (Extraordinary Environmental Enterprise).

Spruance is home to five DuPont businesses:

Kevlar® brand fiber
DuPont Teijin Films™ Mylar® films
NOMEX® brand fiber
Tyvek® nonwoven technology
Zytel® nylon resin

Spruance is currently DuPont’s largest manufacturing site in terms of both employment and capital investment. Located on 550 acres on the James River, Spruance was constructed on the Ampthill plantation site in 1929 as a Rayon® facility.


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