ARE YOU – OR IS SOMEONE YOU KNOW – AN ENVIRONMENTAL CHAMPION?

It’s that time of year again, when EPA Region 2 seeks applications for its annual Environmental Champions Awards (ECA). Each year we honor environmental trailblazers – individuals, businesses and organizations that have contributed significantly to improving the environment and protecting human health.

EPA is now seeking nominations of environmental stewards from New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and eight federally recognized Indian Nations who have gone above and beyond for environmental progress in their communities. Winners will be honored at a ceremony in the Spring at EPA’s regional office in Manhattan. The Agency is accepting Nominations through February 3, 2017.

Last year, one of our ECA winners was Dr. Joseph A. Gardella, Jr., a distinguished professor at the University of Buffalo who served as co-chair of the Community Action Council at the Niagara Falls Storage Superfund site in Lewiston, NY. Dr. Gardella was instrumental in helping facilitate a dialogue between the community and the government which resulted in the excavation of 200,000 cubic yards of radioactive waste stored at the site, remnants of the Manhattan Project that produced the country’s first nuclear weapons.

To nominate an individual or organization, please visit EPA’s Environmental Champion Award webpage at http://www.epa.gov/aboutepa/environmental-champion-awards

The webpage includes details about award criteria, prior winners and application instructions.

Murray Fisher (left), Founder of the New York Harbor School, ECA winner Dr. Joseph A. Gardella, Jr., and EPA Regional Administrator Judith A. Enck

Murray Fisher (left), Founder of the New York Harbor School, ECA winner Dr. Joseph A. Gardella, Jr., and EPA Regional Administrator Judith A. Enck

Editor's Note: The views expressed here are intended to explain EPA policy. They do not change anyone's rights or obligations. You may share this post. However, please do not change the title or the content, or remove EPA’s identity as the author. If you do make substantive changes, please do not attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

EPA's official web site is www.epa.gov. Some links on this page may redirect users from the EPA website to specific content on a non-EPA, third-party site. In doing so, EPA is directing you only to the specific content referenced at the time of publication, not to any other content that may appear on the same webpage or elsewhere on the third-party site, or be added at a later date.

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Every Community Has an Environmental Champion: Nominate Yours

EPA’s Judith Enck presents Troy Lancaster with an Environmental Champion Award.

EPA’s Judith Enck presents Troy Lancaster with an Environmental Champion Award.

By Judith Enck

 

Protecting human health and the environment is our mission at EPA, but it isn’t just a job for EPA. No one individual or group can do it alone – it takes all of us. Informed, engaged community members have an important role to play in protecting the environment.

Each year, EPA Region 2 (which includes New York, New Jersey, eight Indian nations, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) honors individuals, businesses and non-profit groups with Environmental Champion Awards for their dedication to protecting public health and the environment. Awards are given out for achievements in environmental stewardship. Nominations are being accepted through March 1, 2016. Individuals and organizations chosen for the award are trailblazers who promote better ways of doing things for the health of their neighborhoods and the planet. I believe every community has environmental champions.

If last year’s award winners serve as a signal for what’s to come, I fully expect to be astounded by the ingenuity and commitment of this year’s award winners. Last year I traveled to the Bronx to award community leader, Troy Lancaster, with an award. In 1996, Mr. Lancaster established the Dred Scott Bird Sanctuary, 7.5 acres of parkland in the South Bronx as habitat for migrating birds. The park is part of New York City’s Department of Parks and Recreation system and serves as a youth educational facility, where the importance of neighborhood conservation is taught in a hands-on learning environment through activities, such as art workshops, birdwatching and annual harvest events. Not just a stopover for migrating birds, the Dred Scott Bird Sanctuary is a much-needed green space in the Bronx.

The work that Mr. and Mrs. Lancaster and their family and others do for the environment is invaluable, and this is only one example of the great work being done in our region. I urge you to look closely around your community – there’s important environmental work being done there. Thank your fellow community members for safeguarding your community by nominating them for this prestigious award.
Visit EPA’s Environmental Champion Award website for criteria and nomination instructions: http://www.epa.gov/aboutepa/environmental-champion-awards.

 

About the Author: Judith Enck is the Regional Administrator of EPA Region 2’s Manhattan office, which serves New York, New Jersey, Eight Indian nations, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Editor's Note: The views expressed here are intended to explain EPA policy. They do not change anyone's rights or obligations. You may share this post. However, please do not change the title or the content, or remove EPA’s identity as the author. If you do make substantive changes, please do not attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

EPA's official web site is www.epa.gov. Some links on this page may redirect users from the EPA website to specific content on a non-EPA, third-party site. In doing so, EPA is directing you only to the specific content referenced at the time of publication, not to any other content that may appear on the same webpage or elsewhere on the third-party site, or be added at a later date.

EPA is providing this link for informational purposes only. EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of non-EPA information provided by any third-party sites or any other linked site. EPA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies, internet applications or any policies or information expressed therein.