Who Should We Honor on Earth Day?

By Todd Calongne

Calling all environmental do-gooders! We need your help to find New Yorkers who are making a positive impact on health and the environment.  Each year EPA seeks candidates for its annual Environmental Quality Awards and nominations are now invited.  Hopefully, you’ll take a few minutes and nominate friends, neighbors, colleagues, officials and organizations who are making a difference for the environment!

How about recommending a company that puts the environment above sales goals?  Do you know someone who started a community recycling program? Or someone who teaches youngsters how to be green? Or when a friend who volunteers for a green cause rather than sitting home on Saturday clearing off a week’s worth of recorded TV programs.  You know what I mean. While clearing your DVR doesn’t classify as a green initiative, it’s a better alternative than buying than buying DVDs and VHS tapes only to have them end up in a landfill. 

I personally see so many acts of environmental activism here at EPA’s New York City offices.  Regional Administrator Judith Enck is active in assuring we all “walk the walk” with better recycling, double sided printing and reusable materials in the office to name a few.  Kudos to the EPA Region 2 employees who are fighting the environmental fight daily.

Please tell us about your favorite environmentalist.  The awards recognize achievements in six categories:

  • An Individual Citizen with an impact on the environment
  • Non-Profit Environmental Organization or a Community Group
  • Environmental Educators
  • Green Business and Industry making strides to make our surroundings safer and better
  • Federal, State, Local or Tribal Government or Agency who can show excellence in environmental management or environmentally minded thinking
  • Press and Media who cover or uncover important issues assuring the public is aware of concerns in their area and of course shine a light on key issues serving as a check on government organizations

Nominations are due February 21st and can be submitted at: http://www.epa.gov/region2/eqa.

About the Author: Todd Calongne serves as the Intergovernmental and Community Affairs Branch Chief for EPA’s Region 2.  New to EPA, Todd spent years working on community outreach for the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Agency for International Development.