2017 Green Globe Awards
Kicking off Earth Week, King County Executive Dow Constantine today honored 13 businesses, cities, organizations, and groups for the work they're doing to protect and improve the local environment.
The Green Globe Awards are the County's highest honor for local environmental efforts. The Lummi Nation took the top award for leading the effort to oppose construction of a coal export terminal that would have impacted human health and endangered fish and wildlife throughout Puget Sound.
"The Green Globe recipients reflect our region's steadfast commitment to protecting the natural environment that is central to our quality of life," said Executive Constantine. "We are the proud home to innovative businesses, nonprofits, cities, and tribal nations that are helping us create a more sustainable future."
The top honor — Environmental Catalyst Award — went to the Lummi Nation, which led a broad coalition of Indian Tribes, environmental groups, local governments and individuals in opposition of building what would have been the largest coal export terminal ever constructed in North America in northern Puget Sound — posing a tremendous threat to the health of people, water and air quality, and to fish and wildlife habitat.
The Green Globe Awards are presented every two years to coincide with Earth Day activities.
Leader in Climate Justice:
Puget Sound Sage
This non-profit organization works to improve the lives of all families by building power for shared prosperity in our regional economy. Sage combines research, innovative policy and organizing to advance racial equity, stronger democracy, good jobs, affordable housing, accessible transit and a healthy environment. Sage's coalition-building approach works to center the communities disproportionately impacted by climate change at the heart of climate resiliency strategies.
Leader in Open Space Conservation:
A founding member of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust and with a 37-year career with the Washington State Department of Natural Resources, McClelland's leadership has helped secure a sustainable future for a much-loved landscape that includes many of the most popular trails and conservation lands in Washington. He is dedicated to ensuring access to nearby forestlands is a fundamental part of quality of life for everyone living in our region.
Leader in Supporting Rural Sustainability:
Snoqualmie Valley Preservation Alliance
Formed in 2010, the Snoqualmie Valley Preservation Alliance has forged relationships between farmers, residents, and county and state officials. They advocate for creative solutions to shared challenges, making great progress on issues central to protecting the Valley, including flooding, development impacts, and water rights. Stakeholders know they can make their voices heard to protect what makes the Valley special — and what it will take to make it even more of a remarkable place.
Corporate Leader in Community Stewardship:
REI is one of the King County Parks' top corporate partners. REI promotes participation in the County's parks and trails system to their customers, and uses Parks' lands for outdoor classes, workshops, volunteer stewardship projects, and employee trainings. The relationship between REI and King County Parks continues to deepen, as the co-op's new store and future headquarters are located along the Eastside Rail Corridor in Bellevue, where King County is planning a regional trail.
Leader in Environmentally Sustainable Business Practices:
King County Housing Authority
The King County Housing Authority provides rental housing and rental assistance to more than 18,000 families, serving people with low and moderate incomes throughout the county. Guided by its five-year sustainability plan, KCHA is reducing energy and water consumption, diverting materials from the waste stream, using environmentally responsible maintenance and landscaping practices, and more. Additionally, it incorporates Evergreen Sustainability and/or Built Green standards into all new construction projects.
Leader in Sustainable Building:
Northwest EcoBuilding Guild
The Northwest EcoBuilding Guild is committed to engaging in the cooperative and balanced creation of an ecologically sustainable built environment. Its members work to encourage building practices that reduce carbon emissions, are self-sustaining, contribute to economic development, and strive to create optimal conditions for human health and community. What is now the exception in the construction industry will become the norm, and "green" will no longer be needed to define building practices.
Leader in Product Stewardship:
LightRecycle Washington is a statewide product stewardship program for mercury-containing lights. The network of more than 220 sites in Washington includes businesses and municipal facilities — even King County's popular Wastemobile household hazardous waste collection events. Since launching in 2015, LightRecycle has collected and recycled more than two million mercury-containing lights. They are affiliated with the Product Care Association, which develops programs to keep targeted products out of landfills and waterways by making special waste recycling easy for everyone.
Leader in Air Quality Solutions:
Just Health Action
Just Health Action led a broad partnership to address the most pressing environmental issue in Georgetown — air pollution. Engaging the community on air quality solutions, they helped implement the community's choice of a green wall. The result is the largest freestanding green wall in the Seattle area — a 126-foot long, 13-foot high vegetated trellis at CDL Recycle which helps stop the dust from the industrial area from blowing into nearby homes. As a result, awareness is growing of this green solution for air quality.
Leader in Community Stewardship:
Cascade Middle School Drug and Alcohol Prevention Team
Cascade Middle School's Drug and Alcohol Prevention Team is taking ownership of its White Center community, investing time and energy into activities that promote health, service, and social justice. In response to past students' concerns about cleanliness, safety, and substance use in neighboring Dick Thurnau Memorial Park, student team members help restore the park by providing monthly service at the park - pulling weeds, planting new greenery, and picking up litter. The team hopes to be a positive influence in the school community.
Leader in Supporting Waste to Resources:
Since 1993, Northwest Biosolids has provided leadership, guidance and coordination in emphasizing the beneficial use of biosolids — the nutrient-rich organic materials created through the wastewater treatment process. Thanks to Northwest Biosolids' support, 88 percent of the biosolids in the Pacific Northwest are recycled as a fertilizer and soil conditioner, compared to 60 percent nationally. Northwest Biosolids provides a voice for biosolids and biosolids managers, funds biosolids research, and is a strong advocate for sustainable reuse of wastewater products, as well as sustainable agriculture.
Leader in Renewable Energy Innovation:
Puget Sound Energy
Puget Sound Energy is putting their energy into clean power solutions to help their customers and the environment. PSE is a nationally recognized leader in renewable energy and energy efficiency, and is America's second-largest utility owner of wind energy — with enough capacity to meet the needs of nearly 200,000 homes. PSE is proud of the work they do and the emphasis they have placed on renewable energy, as well as energy efficiency, to empower their communities to be the best they can be.