Green Sweeping Practices in the Power Sweeping Industry

A Brief Introduction to the Environmental Movement
When early environmentalists began to warn us that Nature was, in cold hard fact, not indestructible, there was obvious voices of dissention among the populations who produce the waste, as well as the companies that make all of the products that the populations consumed, who themselves caused more waste—industrial waste—in the production of the population’s consumption needs. The supply and demand cycle seems endless. In the early days most thought, and perhaps rightly so, that demands for supply have to be met and the more consumption the better because more consumption leads to more production, and more production leads to more profits, and there is nothing wrong with making money.
The American society, including many other parts of the world, has come a very long way from the 1960s when the Environmental Movement got its beginning. Early environmentalists began to warn the human race that it is already facing an environmental crisis due to excessive overpopulation, pollution, and serious harm, which is causing the planetary ecosystem to become unbalanced. Leading scientists, politicians, and world leaders slowly began looking at the problem with clear eyes and soon realized that Mother Nature was not indestructible, and human beings had to be become aware that Mother Nature was in fact not everlasting and that they can have a terrible and negative impact on Nature and its delicate ecosystems.
It began to change in the 1970s, however, when International Organizations such as The U.N. and its high profile organizations such UNESCO, etc. began huge scientific studies into how excessive industrialization has been destroying our natural environment. World-wide renowned scientific experts and world political and business leaders became convinced that the early environmentalists were right after all. Environmental Protection Laws began to be passed all over the world. In the United States we saw the early passage of the Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act. Who would have thought that Mother Nature could be that destroyed that the very air we breathe and the very water we drink and need to survive would be threatened?
Prominent scientists and business leaders continued to research the environmental problems and it came to a head with the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development UNCED, the so-called Earth Summit held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, where numerous and very credible science, political and social leaders started to prove with hard scientific evidence and sound scientific researchthat human impact on the environmental can have major negative consequences. Soon after, we saw the development of unprecedented world-wide cooperation to protect the environment with the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer, where 37 signatory nations agreed to cut, by half, their release of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) into the environment by the year 2000. IN 1997 over 150 countries negotiated to form the Kyoto Protocol, which requires nations to cut their emissions of carbon dioxide and other Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) substantially in the following years. With continued advanced amendments to such word-wide cooperation and other more advanced doctrines, treaties, scientific studies, protocols, laws, and legislation all geared to environmental protection have all proven and established, without a doubt, that we are deeply involved in an environmental crisis.
From this very brief history we can see where the “Green Movement” got its start and why now many American industries try to practice “Sustainable Development,” which means finding ways to produce, consume, and dump waste that does not slow down businesses or consumption, but at the same time changes the ways we produce and changes the way we get rid of our wastes.
The best way to get an understanding of Green Sweeping Practices in the Power Sweeping Industry is to hear from the very companies that manufacture the technologies, as well as environmentally conscious Power Sweeping Company owners. So, let’s first hear from Green Sweeping Technology Manufacturers and then below we will hear from eco-conscious Power Sweeping company owners and practitioners of Green Sweeping Practices.

Green Sweeping and Manufacturers of Power Sweeping Trucks and Technologies

Speaking with Mr. Tom Rokas, Internal Sales Manager at TYMCO was enlightening, especially when he said that “In many ways, all TYMCO products have always been Green Technologies. Environmental issues are at the heart of the very earliest Regenerative Air Sweepers, first invented and patented by TYMCO, and every subsequent model has continued to be designed with built-in environmental controls that protect the environment and especially protect any and all communities and its citizens where TYMCO’s innovative technologies operate.” He sent me a very informative history of the company and the first invention and subsequent development of the standard in eco-friendly Green Sweeping Technologies. The passage below has been very closely adapted from the History Mr. Rokas supplied; the text basically reflects the very text of the history, with only minor modifications. Here is the text adapted from “TYMCO Regenerative Air Sweepers: Roots and History”
The first air sweeper was actually developed to meet a need in the road construction industry by Mr B.W. Young of Young and Young Brothers Construction of Waco, Texas. In addition to one of the leaders in the construcition industry in Texas, Mr. Young was also an inventor with several patents in the road construction and compaction industries under his belt.
The first Regenerative Air Sweeper was another of his successful inventions, created to meet the demands of another of his inventions, a truck mounted process of coating asphalt. The asphalt repair process required a completly clean surface to effectively bond with the existing asphalt. Conventional broom sweepers proved to be ineffective because they only sweep the dirt and debris into roadway cracks and were costly to maintain. Mr. Young’s revolutionary concept was to use a truck mounted air compressor to blast the roadway surface clean, which required to remain clean after the truck had passed. So, the creative inventor that he was, he developed the idea of a regenerative air system that captured the dirt and debris in the hopper and reused only centrifugually cleaned air to complete the closed loop sweep cycle.
Quickly realizing the positive effect of his Regenerative Air System, Mr. Young envisioned multiple applications for improving the existing technology of cleaning streets and paved areas. His vision changed the sweeper market for the positive and it has never been the same again. In the late 1960s the Young family incorporated and federally registered TYMCO—The Young Manufacturing Company.
When Mr. Young passed away in the early 1970s, the company remained a family business, with his wife Mrs. Sophie Young, becoming president. Nowadays sons Kenneth and Gary continue the TYMCO vision and technologcial innovation in the Power Sweeping Industry. Still today, constantly innovating and inventing new and useful technologies, the TYMCO product line of Regenerative Air Sweeper Power Trucks are sold world wide, and continue to mainatin loyal customers such as the U.S. Air Force and Military, with over 1,500 units working in a dozens of large cities, municipalties, airports, etc.
The positive environmental impact of Green Sweeping Technologies first invented and developed at TYMCO continues to create innovative and interesting Regenerative Air Sweepers. TYMCO Sweepers, with their unique ability to pick up the fine dust particles to which pollutants adhere, and retain them in the hopper, remain one of the most popular industrial sweeping technologies invented so far.
The array of inovative and patented technological inventions begun by Mr. Young continue strong at TYMCO’s massive 100,000 square foot facility still located in Waco, Texas, and their sophisticated Research and Devleopment Department is staffed with some of the most prominent and qualfied scientists and engineers in the industry. They are unqualfied R&D leaders in the Power Sweeping Industry.
The numerous TYMCO line of innovative Regenerative Air Sweepers include their Model 210, Model 300, Model 600, Model 600 BAH, Model 500x (High side dump) Model HSP (High Speed Runway Sweeper), Model DST-6 (Dustless Sweeping Technology) and, finally, ther Model 435.

Schwarze Industries
According to Mr. Jim Adair, Product Manager at Schwarze Industries sweepers have come a long way and so has the business of sweeping.
“All of our street sweepers conform to and have past the SCAQMD (South Coast Air Quality Management District) Rule 1186 requirements. These tests measure both performance and emissions of air borne particles. Since the first round of tests, sweepers have become more efficient and the exhaust from the engines used in them have has become much cleaner. Today’s diesel fuel contains 97% less sulfur than the diesel fuel of 2006. The engines have also become much cleaner drastically reducing the discharge of soot, ash and nitrogen oxide. The introduction of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) systems and the use of Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) has been a great improvement in emission systems. The diesel exhaust fluid is injected into the high temperature exhaust to convert the nitrogen oxide into harmless nitrogen and water vapor. By the end of this year, 2015, all of the engines used in our sweepers will be EPA Tier 4 final.
Sweeping today is not just about picking up litter for appearances; it has been recognized by the US EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) as a best management practice to reduce storm water runoff. By collecting the debris closer to the source, the sweepers not only prevent the larger debris from plugging up catch basins, storm drains and streams. It also keeps the finer particles from reaching our water ways that can impact the ecosystem, killing plants, wildlife and harming human beings. Most people would be amazed at the amount of debris that is corrected by a sweeper in just a few blocks. To think that if it wasn’t picked up by the sweeper it would all end up washed into the storm drains and into our water ways.
Schwarze Industries prides itself in producing a full range of sweepers, from parking garage to highway, from mechanical broom to regenerative air machines. Our machines have been used in many tests and studies to help set industry standards and protocols for environmentally sound technologies.”

Professional Power Sweeping Business Leaders

Mid-State Industrial Service, Inc.
Mr. Jim Dodson, owner of Mid-State Industrial Service, based in Eugene-Springfield, Oregon, one of the undisputed leaders in the Power Sweeping Industry, and one of the first 20 Sweeping Companies to become officially recognized by the North American Power Sweeping Association (NAPSA) and its Certified Sweeping Company (CSC) certification process and designation. Here is what Mr. Dodson has to say on the topic of Green Sweeping in the Power Sweeping Industry:
“Other than the sweeping that we do for paving projects where the surface is soon to be covered with asphalt, I think that almost all sweeping could be considered to be green and always has been. It is true that years ago the main reason for sweeping was aesthetic, mainly make your business look better than the other guy. That’s still the case, but now because of the green initiative there is a little more emphasis on sweeping. Government mandates and the clean water act have pushed things a little. EPA rules on zinc levels in storm water runoff in particular have made a difference in our area, but only because they are being enforced. Many government agencies should be sweeping more frequently but aren’t because they aren’t pushed to do so. In the local area, the DEQ is monitoring storm water runoff. A number of facilities have either started to sweep or increased their sweeping schedules with air sweepers because of high zinc and or copper in their storm water samples.
We recycle almost everything that can be, including used oil and filters, gutter brooms and main brooms, card board and paper. We sell our used tube brooms to farmers who put them out in their fields as scratching post for their animals. We screen all of the sweepings that come back to our yard, only the trash segment goes to the landfill, the dirt and gravel segment goes to a certified sand and gravel pit to reclaim the pit. The overall weight and amount of piles of waste at our yards after careful sifting and separating is reduced up to 65% depending on the size of the piles. We use B-5 or B-20 biodiesel in our trucks. We buy almost all of our trucks new so that they have the newer emissions systems on them. We use regenerative air machines on the parking lots. We try to have the most efficient equipment for the job. We have multiple types and sizes of sweepers so that we have a choice of what equipment will do the best for each specific job. Anytime we are sweeping when it is dry, we are using water to keep dust to an absolute minimum in the hoppers. We also clean storm water catch basins. All of that debris goes to a county operated disposal site.“
Mid-State Industrial Service, Inc. has one of the most impressive and varied fleet of Sweeper Trucks around. Just take a look at all of the kinds of sweeper trucks they use.

• 2006 & 2005 Elgin Road Wizard High Dump Street Broom
• 2003 Schwarze A800 High Dump Air Sweeper
• 2003 & 2000 Wittke Road Wizard High Dump Street Broom
• 2005 & 2004 Tymco 435 Air Sweeper
• (2) 2001 Tymco 210 Air Sweeper
• 2000 Tymco 210 Air Sweeper
• 2006 & 2004 Camel 200 Vacuum Truck and Jet Rodder
• 2000 Guzzler Ace Industrial Vacuum Loader
• 1996 Camel 200 Vacuum Truck and Jet Rodder
• 1991 Camel 200 Vacuum Truck
• 1993 6117 Supersucker Vacuum Loader
• 1988 3800 Gallon Street Flusher
• 1978 International Dump Truck w/ PB Loader

For more information on Mid-State Industrial Service,
visit their interesting and informative website at:

Story by Mark Joseph Manion