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Seabrook Puts Pedal to the Medal in Effort to Help Protect Environment and Save on Fuel Costs

August 6, 2011

Latest Program Helps Lower Emissions, Fuel Costs, and Allows Community to Continue to Meet its Mission of Helping Care for the Earth

TINTON FALLS, NJ - In its continuing effort to help protect the environment, Seabrook rolled out its latest program - a four-wheeled electric security vehicle that produces no emissions and saves on fuel costs.
The vehicle is called a Global Electric Motor Car (GEM), which patrols the full-service retirement community - operating on six gel batteries and 12 fuses.  This vehicle plugs into a standard A/C outlet and takes six hours to fully charge.
"We are serious about cost savings, but protecting the environment is paramount," said Art Sparks, Seabrook's executive director.  "Our community has a proven track-record of helping look after our earth and this latest step is an extension of this mission."
Seabrook General Services Director Karen Kollmer said, "The energy conservation and pollution reduction measures such as this are important because they show how we can give back to the planet.  However, it's important to note that these efforts are only a tiny piece of a much larger picture - everyone can do their part to be environmentally conscious."
"This community is doing all that it can to find innovative strategies to meet the urgent problem of climate change, energy consumption and waste," said Lisa Vargas, Seabrook security manager.  "We are pleased that we have the GEM at our campus to be an instrumental part of our ongoing efforts to reach out to our residents and help the earth at the same time."
Gas prices throughout New Jersey and the U.S. are surging.  The state average is $3.62 a gallon for regular gas - and the national average is just a bit higher at $3.66 per gallon.
In one month, Seabrook saved approximately $250 in fuel costs with the GEM vehicle, and the community estimates that there will be a savings of $2,500 - $3,000 throughout the year.
Seabrook also expects to save approximately another $3,000 in repair costs by utilizing the GEM vehicle.
In 2008, the New Jersey Senate and General Assembly acknowledged Seabrook for its environmentally conscious efforts through a joint legislative resolution.
Other environmentally conscious efforts at Seabrook include:
• This past January and April, Seabrook held two plastic bag exchanges at the community where residents were urged to recycle plastic shopping bags for a cloth tote bag.  At both events eight and ten large black plastic bags were filled with plastic bags respectively.
• Distribution of new recycling containers to each apartment (one for plastic/cans, one for paper), in exchange for donated old single recycling containers to another non-profit.  This program was done in partnership with the Borough of Tinton Falls.
• Continue to increase our use of CFL bulbs to replace incandescent where possible.
• Changing paper towel dispensers to automated single sheet dispensers to reduce our waste tonnage.
• Changing housekeeping cleaning chemicals to "green chemicals."
• A reduction in lighting wattage.
• Running HVAC units more efficiently.
• Pulse powered water treatment plants opposed to chemical softeners.
• Using organic soil treatment measures.
• Planting trees throughout the campus.
Currently, Seabrook is exploring other environmentally friendly programs, including adding solar panels to the roofs of the buildings.  Residents are also being educated on other energy conservation steps they can take in their own homes, including shutting off lights and televisions when not in use, water conservation and heating and air condition usage.
More than 1,400 people live at Seabrook, an Erickson Living full-service retirement community that promotes a vibrant lifestyle.  Erickson Living develops and manages 16 full-service retirement communities that provide worry-free living for America's seniors - the country's fastest-growing population segment.  Erickson Living's refundable entrance deposit and predictable monthly service fees provide residents across the country financial peace of mind. Comprehensive health and wellness services, integrated into every community, lead to demonstrated resident benefits.  For more information, visit