MILAN, Tenn. -- Milan Army Ammunition Plant knows that protecting and preserving this nation's way of life is not about just munitions.
No, MLAAP understands that defending our lifestyle also involves internal sustainment, especially concerning our natural resources.
In fact, as Lt. Col. Norbert Fochs, MLAAP commander, explains, "We are not just stewards of the nation's money, but stewards of the nation's natural resources too. I always encourage my staff to 'do the right thing.' Team Milan knows that protecting the environment is the right thing to do."*
That is why, along with high quality ammunition, MLAAP produces shredded steel and shredded paper, bundled cardboard, empty aluminum cans, plastic drums, and a number of other recyclable products.
That is also the reason the Tennessee Recycling Coalition recently named MLAAP Government Recycler of the Year for 2011.
MLAAP operates under a fence-to-fence ISO 14001 certified Environmental Management System, overseen by government and contractor environmental employees and implemented by every MLAAP employee.
Corine Claybrooks, property manager for American Ordnance at MLAAP, while submitting the application, remarked in reference to photographs of recycling receptacles and piles of scrap metal, "You can see we are committed to waste prevention and recycling."
Annual training programs bring employees up-to-speed on EMS regulations and procedures. Each employee emerges from training equipped with a set of responsibilities and a renewed awareness of the environment.
"Recycling at a facility this size requires a team effort. No one department does it alone," Claybrooks explained.
Along with the collection and sale of scrap metal, MLAAP recovers metallic byproducts from the water used during the production process in order to reuse these substances in future production.
The plant also encourages employees to bring their recycling from home. Receptacles for rechargeable batteries, cell phones, and aluminum soda cans are set up in common areas for convenient employee access.
"I am pleased with the recognition Team Milan has received for our recycling efforts," Fochs shares. "But I am even more pleased with our employees for taking on recycling as their own personal mission."*
In 2010, MLAAP was in second place for this same award, which is one reason, according to Claybrooks, that the team is so motivated to continue improving the recycling program.
"There is not a second place award, so coming in at a close second in 2010 enhanced the challenge to see if we could nudge ahead and win in 2011. We did it!" she enthused.
Beverly Atkins, industrial property specialist for the MLAAP government staff, shared, "This award represents the hard work and dedication that our operating contractor, American Ordnance, has put forward to make our program a success. I am very proud of what Team Milan has accomplished."
Milan Army Ammunition Plant, established in 1941, is a subordinate installation of the Joint Munitions Command. If a Soldier, sailor, airman or Marine shoots it, Joint Munitions Command provides it.
*Editor's Note: Comments from Lt. Col. Norbert Fochs added after initial publishing.