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DEQ/DHS Public Health Laboratory

  • Address:  3150 NW 229th St, Hillsboro, OR 
  • Tenant(s): Departments of Environmental Quality and  Human Services
  • Square footage: 85,750
  • Year Constructed: 2007 
   Public Health Lab 

Building History
The building history section is under construction.

Green Team

 The DEQ/DHS Public Health Laboratory (PHL) launched a Green Team in the 1990s and maintained it at their previous site. The group continues to thrive at the new lab in Hillsboro.  . Learn more about Green Teams
Current Efforts:
  • Projects:
    • Soap: One of our latest attempts at reducing our impact is to supply foam soap in all the restrooms. These soaps contain much less soap and less phosphates and are not supplied by the company that does our cleaning and re-supplying.
    • Compost Bin: Our new effort is the compost bin. Stay tuned for updates on this project.
  • Field Trips:
    • We started out educating the staff about recycling. This included a field trip to Far West Fibers recycling facility where we saw firsthand how mixed recycling gets separated. We followed that up with bringing their representative here for a brown bag session which included door prizes for attendees.
    • We next went to Blue Heron Paper Mill in Oregon City to see how paper is recycled. This trip helped to educate us about the importance of separating office paper from cardboard stock and glossy paper. We were also fascinated to see how paper is made
    • Our last field trip was to the local compost facility here in Hillsboro (Nature’s Needs). We were really interested in how a commercial composter does their work (and to see if they would be willing to take our lunch room scraps). They were not interested in our scraps but gave us an exhaustive tour of the facility and supplied us with a lab report of their compost material.  Sometimes it pays to be a bunch of lab nerds because we get the really good information that probably only we are even excited about!
  • Monthly Meetings: the meetings are intended to trouble shoot issues. Some of our biggest issues are Styrofoam recycling, plastic bags and glass. PHL generates a lot of Styrofoam waste from their purchases. For the plastic bags and glass, we have stationed plastic bag collection points around the lab and take those to either Far West to the local Fred Meyers store. Finally, we have red bins especially for glass since we cannot have glass in the mixed recycling containers.

Energy Conservation
The Department of Administrative Services (DAS) has designated its buildings as resource conservation zones. This means DAS works hard to save energy and water in its buildings, as well as ensure employees and tenants recycle to the best of their ability. The goal is to save taxpayer money and care for the environment to the greatest extent possible.
Energy Savings Report
  DAS compares all bills to the calendar year 2000 as a baseline.  The goal and OAR require a 20 percent reduction in electricity and natural gas usage by 2015. DAS does not adjust the buildings without baseline adjustments for weather or any other factors. The savings column represents the combined electric and gas savings in Btu’s compared to the year 2000 usage. The Energy Cost column includes the totals for electric and gas – not all utilities.    
The Public Health Laboratory's energy use is under evaluation and won't be posted until a revised baseline can be established. This is due to the fact it was not constructed until after the state's 2000 baseline.
Electricity Scorecards
The quarterly scorecard provides a quick report on electricity reductions, compliance with the 20 percent reduction target, recent night audit results, and tips for conservation. Here are the scorecards for the building.

Night Audits
 As part of the effort to conserve resources, DAS conducts quarterly night audits of the buildings. They walk through the spaces to ensure that lights, appliances, and equipment remains off during unoccupied times. Here are the results of the audits for the building.
DAS plans to conduct an audit of this building soon, but it hasn’t occurred yet.



 The manner in which we travel to and from the building impacts sustainability and greenhouse gas emissions. The following summarizes the sustainable transportation options around the building.