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Dixon Correctional Center Sustainability 

 
The Dixon Correctional Center collects cardboard from various locations within the institution and delivers it to a central location for pick-up by Self Help Enterprises. The mission of Self Help Enterprises of the Rock River Valley is to provide quality rehabilitative programs and services that promote advocacy, empowerment, and the development of independent functioning skills of individuals with disabilities. The donation of the cardboard from the Dixon Correctional Center helps in funding this effort.

Additionally, a
ll fluorescent,incandescent light bulbs, and electronics are collected and taken to local vendors to be recycled.  Used motor oil is picked up by a vendor to recycle it.  All brass shell casings of discharged ammunition are sent to the Training Academy in Springfield to be recycled.

D
ixon Correctional Center's Greenhouse is used  to house many varieties of plants and flowers which have grown from seed. The flowers are used to beautify various locations throughout the institution. Seeds from the Menard Correctional Center Seed Repository have been planted and will be relocated throughout the institutional grounds when mature.

Another sustainable and cost savings practice
Dixon Correctional Center has implemented, is the use of mesh laundry bags for transporting purchases from the inmate commissary and is in the process of eliminating brown paper bag use; saving the facility’s commissary $13,000/year in bag expenses and also significantly reducing the amount of paper waste.
 
The greenhouse at Dixon Correctional Center
Inside the greenhouse at the facility
Commissary staff member providing goods in a laundry bag, rather than a brown paper bag.
The facility is working to reduce energy cost by adding a program to the controls of the Health Care Unit's chiller. This program will stop the chiller from short cycling and only turn on when the outside air temperature reaches the controller’s set point. The program will not only save on electricity but will also protect the chiller from unnecessary starting and stopping.

The waste water treatment plant located at the Dixon Correctional Center not only makes sure that the waste water delivered to the Rock River is clean but the sludge produced by the treatment plant is used and applied to a state owned agricultural field that sits adjacent to the facility.  Land application of raw or treated sewage sludge can significantly reduce the sludge disposal cost component of sewage treatment as well as providing a large part of the nitrogen and phosphorus requirements of many crops.

In honor of Earth Day, on April 22, 2012, Dixon Correctional Center planted four (4) Silver Maple Trees between Building 1 and the main entrance of the facility. Special thanks were given to our LAN Administrator Tim Jacobsen who donated the trees in an effort to help the facility sustain the environment.  

The Dixon Correctional Center continues to search for ways in which waste and expenditures can be reduced by implementing new "green" initiatives. Plastics and metal cans are slated to be recycled as soon as a baler can be acquired by the facility. The facility committee is also considering ways in which to reduce consumption of utilities and to reduce the waste stream that affects the impact our facility has on the environment.