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UMASS-Lowell Student Team Wins EPA Grant for Innovative Project

Release Date: 04/19/2011
Contact Information: David Deegan, (617) 918-1017

(Boston, Mass. – Apr. 19 2011) – Students at UMASS-Lowell working on designing greener routes to halogen-free flame retardant material has received one of only six national EPA grants which are helping student programs to develop technological and scientific solutions that protect the environment and create jobs.

The grant was awarded in the seventh annual EPA People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) award competition held at the National Sustainable Design Expo on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

The team of UMASS-Lowell students has set an ambitious goal to develop a new class of non-halogenated flame retardant materials. Halogenated flame retardant materials are very hazardous to the environment after they have been discharged. Developing an environmentally safe alternate FR will contribute to a cleaner environment.

“This EPA grant to local students, and the other winners across the country, shows that EPA is tapping into our country’s student brain power to help identify environmental solutions,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator for EPA’s New England office.  “These students are showing innovation and creativity. I hope EPA’s help with their work will help them to do their part to address an environmental challenge, and help them to build a business.”

After an initial peer review process, this year winners were selected from 55 competing teams following two days of judging by a panel of national experts convened by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Each P3 award-winning team receives a grant of up to up to $75,000 to further develop the design, implement it in the field, or move it to the marketplace.

The P3 award competition and National Sustainable Design Expo were a part of the 2011 EPA Earth Day celebration event April 16-17. Since 2004, the P3 annual competition has provided a platform for teams to showcase their sustainable projects designed to protect the environment, encourage economic growth, and use natural resources more efficiently. These projects provide innovative, cutting-edge sustainable solutions to worldwide environmental problems.

More information on the P3 Award competition: http://www.epa.gov/p3/2011winners

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