Compiled By Traci Purdum The U.S. EPA presented Bayer Corp. with the 2000 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award for developing an industrial coating material that uses water instead of chemical solvents, thus reducing volatile air emissions by as much as 99%. The Bayer technology, a two-component waterborne polyurethane, cuts VOC released into the atmosphere by 50 to 90% and hazardous air pollutant (HAP) emissions by 50 to 99% while maintaining durability and aesthetic standards previously only achieved by solvent-based coatings. The Bayhydur waterborne coatings raw materials are used in a broad range of applications, such as industrial and wood finishes, floor and automotive coatings, adhesives and paper applications. "Bayer has a long-term commitment to protect our environment by continually improving our environmental performance," says Helge H. Wehmeier, president and CEO, Bayer Corp. "At our company, this means both inventing new products and operating plants that have lower and lower impact on the environment." The EPA presents only five Green Chemistry Challenge Awards each year, the four other winners are: Prof. Chi-Huey Wong of The Scripps Research Institute, Academic Category; RevTech Inc., Small-Business Category; Roche Colorado Corp., Alternative Synthetic Pathways Category; and Dow AgroSciences, Designing Safer Chemicals Category. Pittsburgh-based Bayer is a research-based company with major businesses in health care and life sciences and chemicals. The company had 1999 sales of $8.9 billion and employs approximately 22,200 people. It is a member of the worldwide Bayer Group based in Leverkusen, Germany.