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Clean Air Excellence Awards

Past Award Recipients

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Education/Outreach Award Recipients


Air Quality Partnership of the Delaware Valley
Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission

The Air Quality Partnership of the Delaware Valley (AQP) has been actively educating the public in the Greater Philadelphia region about ways to reduce emissions that lead to ozone pollution and fine particle pollution (PM2.5) since its formation in 1997. The AQP is a program of the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission and consists of a coalition of agencies, businesses and non-profits. The Partnership's network of members, employees and stakeholders encourage voluntary actions to reduce emissions by taking alternative forms of transportation, conserving energy in the home, educating the public about wastefulness of idling vehicles, and sharing ways to reduce emissions while refueling, among other efforts. The AQP is guided by a board composed of active members who serve as message advocates. Their grassroots efforts allow the program to sustain a presence in the region and extend the reach of paid media efforts. The AQP utilizes unique and evolving outreach and education strategies to maintain a fresh and relevant message that emphasizes the benefits of protecting air quality and engaging the public in preventing pollution. Examples include working with partners on an anti-idling campaign that resulted in the creation of an online idling reporting platform (www.idlefreephilly.org), partnering with local media outlets to faithfully report air quality conditions, publishing an air quality activity book meeting Common Core curriculum standards distributed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, holding a gas lawnmower trade-in event, and producing annual outreach campaigns. The AQP has played a role in the region's progress towards attaining the air quality standards for ozone and PM2.5 pollution by consistently utilizing its partnerships to educate the region about preventing air pollution and protecting public health.


Idle Free Louisville
Kentuckiana Air Education

Idle Free Louisville was developed in 2010 to combat rising summertime ozone levels in Kentuckiana, an area encompassing Metropolitan Louisville and Southern Indiana that has long struggled with air pollution. Idle Free Louisville is overseen by Kentuckiana Air Education (KAIRE), the education and outreach unit of the Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District. KAIRE communicates the Idle Free Louisville message through partnerships with local schools, businesses and organizations; TV and radio commercials; online via social media; press releases to news outlets; and direct conversations with the public at neighborhood festivals, community meetings, business expos, health fairs and other events.

The campaign's cornerstone is Idle Free School/Idle Free Business, which enlists parents, teachers, students, employees and business operators to adopt Idle Free principles. Schools, for example, discourage parents from idling while waiting to pick up their children. Businesses post signage asking customers and delivery drivers to shut off their vehicles. The more than 40 participating schools, businesses and organizations are also encouraged to promote Idle Free Louisville in newsletters and other communications.

Each year, KAIRE conducts a random, scientific survey of adults in the five-county area it serves. According to the most recent survey in October 2013, 1 in 3 adults mentioned the Idle Free Louisville message without prompting. More than half of consumers understood that idling longer than 10 seconds uses more gas than restarting the engine. A similar survey by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky corroborates these findings, reporting that 62 percent of Louisvillians were changing their idling behavior in response to Air Quality Alerts, another indication that Idle Free Louisville is making an impact.

Improving Tribal Indoor Air Quality
Tribal Healthy Homes Northwest

Tribal Healthy Homes Northwest is a coalition of American Indian and Alaska Natives from Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska. The coalition was formed in 2009, after tribes called attention to indoor air hazards in tribal housing - a largely unfunded, unaddressed but profound health risk. With the support of EPA Region 10 and the Tulalip Tribes, the coalition has served more than 200 tribes and villages, providing peer-to-peer learning and connecting tribes across the region and country.

Through its core programs of outreach, training and field research, the coalition develops and disseminates best practices that are evidence based and culturally informed. Its goal is to help families live, play and work in environments that are free from disease-producing toxins and free from housing conditions that cause stress and financial strain. To this end, the coalition works by building partnerships with government, non-profits, academia and tribal consortia. In tribal communities, they help to craft solutions through cross-program partnerships, including tribal housing, air quality, and health care staff.

Highlights of this successful program include the Circuit- Rider training program in Weatherization + Health, bringing training directly to reservations and tribal homes. The Wood Heat and Community Health Research Initiative promotes affordable, practical methods to reduce woodsmoke exposure. Finally, the Outreach program consists of webinars, workshops and resource guides to connect tribes to innovative tribal programs, funding and technical assistance. A central priority of all these efforts is to reduce the burden of asthma in native communities - the prevalence of which speaks to disparities in both housing quality and air quality.


Conservation and Climate Change Challenge for Schools
Broward County Pollution Prevention, Remediation, and Air Quality Division

Broward County's Conservation and Climate Change Challenge (C3 Challenge) is an educational competition intended to engage students, teachers, school administrators, staff, and parents in practical strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality. The main goal of the C3 Challenge is to facilitate educators and students in engaging their parents, peers, and community to reduce their carbon footprint and improve air quality. The project includes the C3 Toolkit which is a collection of hands on classroom activities for grades K-12 designed to promote the project in the classroom, at home and in the community. The activities provide teachers with real-life examples that can be implemented in their classrooms and used to foster education and awareness of climate change and air quality. Aside from the school environment, the kit also includes a take home pledge which prompts students and parents to commit to actions they can implement in their community. The Broward County Air Quality Program and Board of County Commissioners teamed up with multiple organizations to make the C3 Challenge successful - most notably Broward County Public Schools, Broward County Solid Waste and Recycling Services, Broward County Naturescape, Gold Coast Clean Cities Coalition, and the Broward County MPO. In 2009 and 2010, 1,158 teachers and 116,705 students from 80 schools participated in the C3 Challenge. The actions pledged during this campaign reduced an estimated 19 million pounds of carbon dioxide. The C3 Challenge has now become an annual competition amongst the Broward County public, private, and charter schools with three schools receiving awards each year (elementary, middle, and high).

Tribal Air Quality Education and Outreach on InnerTribal Beat
Spokane Tribal Air Quality Program and KYRS Thin Air Community Radio

InnerTribal Beat is the only locally produced Native radio show in Spokane, Washington. The radio show is a successful media venue through which a wider number of community members can access information about the importance of clean air, best practices, and community resources. The weekly radio show highlights stories and interviews with Tribal Partners about air quality and other environmental issues in Tribal communities, showcasing a variety of Tribal music. Jeff Ferguson, one of the hosts of InnerTribal Beat, says the point of the show is to bridge the gap between Natives and non-Natives, rural and urban Natives and the youth and the elders. KYRS, a community radio station airing the show, currently covers a listening area of some 300,000 people; a success that has resulted from a full power license and signal upgrade in November 2011. InnerTribal Beat can now reach additional communities and tribal members living and working on Indian reservations and both urban and rural areas.

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The Carbon Yeti Program
Cities of Bellevue Utilities

The City of Bellevue’s Utilities Conservation and Outreach Group created the Carbon Yeti program to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions to target levels. This program was created in response to Bellevue signing the U.S. Mayors Climate Protection Agreement, which set a goal to reduce community-wide greenhouse gas emissions to 7 percent below 1990 levels by 2012. The program raises awareness about climate change, motivates city residents to reduce their individual carbon footprints through behavior change, and measures the overall reduction in carbon emission equivalents associated with that change. The program messages include: waste reduction/ recycling, pollution prevention, water conservation, natural yard care, and energy conservation. Branded giveaways, a “smaller footprint” pledge book, online pledging, trading cards, a mascot, a Facebook page, and an interactive online Yeti house with embedded games(www.bellevuewa.gov/yetihouse), are popular program elements. The program reaches a wide audience, including students, parents, the general public, the business community, and regional jurisdictions. To date, the city has received over 850 pledge cards. This equates to 9,008 tons of CO2 which is equivalent to the annual greenhouse gas emissions of 1,563 passenger vehicles.

Commute Solutions Program
Houston-Galveston Area Council

Commute Solutions is a regional partnership program in the Houston- Galveston area that promotes voluntary trip reduction programs and services designed to reduce traffic congestion and improve the region’s air quality. These programs are funded through private and federal transportation funds. Commute Solutions offers advice, answers, and assistance to employers and their employees on all commuting options including: carpooling/NuRide, teleworking, vanpooling, guaranteed ride home, mass transit, biking and walking, and alternative work schedules. The NuRide program, an incentive-based rideshare network that rewards people for sharing rides, has been one of the most successful aspects of Commute Solutions. There are 14,643 NuRide members that have reported over 30 million vehicle miles travelled reduced since 2005. The regional vanpool program is the third largest in the nation with 749 vanpools and 7,830 average daily riders. There are also 3,500 participants in the regional telework program. Commute Solutions is marketed through radio, print, and web site advertisements, outdoor billboards, and over 150 public outreach activities per year.

Dust Handbook and Field Guide
Maricopa County Air Quality Department

After Maricopa County was designated a “serious nonattainment area,” the county is required to show a 5 percent reduction in particulate matter pollution each year until the standard is met. Controlling for particulate matter proved difficult in Maricopa County’s dry, desert environment and businesses needed help in understanding new, comprehensive dust control regulations. The Maricopa County Air Quality Department developed the Dust Abatement Handbook and accompanying Dust Abatement Field Guide for the construction industry as one component of a comprehensive, aggressive regional program to reduce dust emissions. Over the course of several months, stakeholders actively participated in a collaborative effort to develop a dust control handbook explaining the dust control rules and how they apply to different activities. In addition to the handbook, the department also developed an easy-to-use, pocket-sized “field guide” providing a quick reference on how to limit airborne dust during common types of dust generating operations. While the handbook and manual are being used as welcome tools to achieve compliance, perhaps the greatest immediate improvement was creating and strengthening relationships between regulators, regulated industries, and businesses. The handbook and field guide reflects a shared commitment to achieve improved air quality.

The MOVE! Program
Southern Maine Regional Planning Commission

The MOVE! Program, created to provide air quality based education from a transportation perspective, is a K-12 multi-disciplinary education program that promotes student awareness and understanding of the environmental, economic, societal, historical and technological elements of transportation and its impacts. The Program supports existing classroom units of study, aligns with the Maine Learning Results and encourages students to use grade appropriate skills in mathematics, reading, writing, science, social studies, technology, visual arts and career preparation. Over the last 11 years MOVE! has provided presentations to over 20,000 students and has extended learning opportunities and teaching resources to hundreds of educators in southern Maine. The MOVE! Program centers around three concepts: Connections, Choices, and Consequences. These themes are incorporated into all classroom presentations, teacher workshops, and educational resources. One such presentation, Trip Chainers, allows middle school students to collect their own transportation data that they use to calculate impacts such as CO2 output/savings and fuel used/savings. Students learn that by changing habits and thinking ahead they can generate real savings in pollution output and resources used. Other presentations such as Map Skills, Data Gathering and Graphing, The Lean and Green Challenge, Pollution and Climate Change are other examples of classroom presentations and activities that engage students in core learning activities while also making them aware of transportation choices and impacts.

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Powerful Choices for the Environment — Puget Sound Energy

Powerful Choices is an environmental education program that is changing the way middle school students in western Washington think about air quality in their ecosystem.  Environmental educators from Puget Sound Energy partner with 18 local agencies to deliver this dynamic four-day program that works with students through a series of hands-on, inquiry-based activities that focus on local air quality, waste reduction, and energy and water use.  Students develop a greater understanding of how their individual decisions affect their local ecosystem as well as the global challenges facing the environment. Now in its 16th year, the Powerful Choices program reaches over 17,000 6th-8th grade students in more than 90 schools throughout the Puget Sound region. One focus of the four-hour program is air quality as one non-living component of the students’ ecosystem. Students discover how daily decisions affect air quality by examining their own transportation options, how they choose to acquire everyday items like clothes and shoes, and how they use electricity. They use a “transportation game,” and an “adventure book” to better understand their impact and ways to improve air quality.

5 Green Things — Bridging the Gap

Bridging the Gap is a nonprofit that manages dozens of environmental programs that include recycling centers, biking programs, city tree planning, and more. In April 2008, they created and launched an outreach program called Five Green Things to address the daily calls from citizens who want to “go green” but do not know what to do first. The campaign features four major elements. One is a flipchart presentation that highlights the top environmental problems in a simple, concise presentation.  The second is volunteer speakers. More than 110 speakers have been trained by Bridging the Gap to give the presentation. In 18 months they have presented to over 8,000 people.  Third, the website and a software program prioritize and track actions, which allows people to pledge to do at least five and up to 40, green things. The prioritization of actions allows for each participant to click the box indicating that they completed the Green Thing and the C02 emissions savings are totaled and added to the grand total on the home page. The last is the symbol of the program which is a small, plain, bright green lapel button given to audience members and participants. It serves as a word of mouth/conversation starter and builds a sense of belonging to the movement. Over 1,700 people have pledged online.

America’s Greeenest Campus — SmartPower

SmartPower launched the campaign America’s Greenest Campus to encourage college students and young adults to reduce their personal energy use.  AGC launched in April 2009, and the first year’s competition ends October 5th.  It has now become the nation’s largest college student energy reduction campaign in just 5 short months. Results to Date include over 15,000 student participants, 461 campuses, over 16 million lbs of CO2 reductions, 142,000 tons of paper reduction, 6,768 MWh electricity reductions, 152,271 gallons of gasoline conserved, 35,327 gallons of fuel oil reduced, and PSA viewership by over 500,000. As part of AGC, SmartPower also launched the $10,000 Energy Smart Ad Challenge, inviting participants to create 30-second ads promoting energy smart habits. Each submitted video is circulated on YouTube to promote the energy smart message. This combined America’s Greenest Campus contest incorporates online social media, competition and rewards to create a dynamic campaign, offers $20,000 in cash prizes. SmartPower launched ACG with the music video, “Save your Energy”. The video now has more than 500,000 views on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N5w9AmtUVnY Exit EPA disclaimer . SmartPower also recruited Russell Simmons, the legendary hip-hop mogul, who now brings the environmental message to young people of color and the world of hip-hop. SmartPower also partners with environmental groups including National Wildlife Federation, which promoted AGC to their 30,000 members in an August, 2009 mailing.

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Air- The Search for One Clean Breathe — Ventura County Air Pollution Control District, Ventura, Calif.

Air – The Search for One Clean Breath is a high definition film created by the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District with support from Media 360, the Port of Long Beach, Loma Linda University Medical Center, the British Antarctic Survey Core Programme, the National Geographic Society, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and many others. Narrated by Tony Award winning actor Joe Mantegna, the film showcases air as a vital resource to be protected. As executive producer and co-writer Barbara L. Page says, “We want to let audiences see air; to tell them the amazing story of air, up close and personal.” Viewers take a guided tour of the story of air, from its ancient beginnings to today’s clean air technologies. On this journey, they meet renowned scientist and scholars worldwide who are discovering the mysteries of air.

The goal is to instill in viewers the idea that they have a personal choice to help clean our air, and that personal action is an ongoing responsibility of everyone who breathes on this planet. A DVD was provided to every state and local air agency in 2008, and was officially released in April at the EPA Air Now Conference in Portland. Since then, it has been shown nationally to thousands of viewers via theater venues, community screenings, local cable access television, classrooms, museums, and libraries. In addition, a teacher’s guide to the film will be available in summer 2009 that will contain lessons in social science, science, and history and can be located on the film’s Web site at www.airthefilm.org.

Air North Texas — North Central Texas Council of Governments, Arlington, Texas

Air North Texas is a regional clean air partnership between public, private, and non-profit sectors designed to inform residents and encourage them to make clean air choices. The goal of the partnership is to offer the public a comprehensive air quality resource while promoting a consistent regional air quality message. By leveraging existing resources and program strengths, the partnership increases public awareness of specific opportunities to reduce ozone-forming emissions.

The partnership formed a task force to develop the Air North Texas goals into a comprehensive and versatile regional public awareness campaign utilizing print, radio, Internet, and non-traditional communication strategies, such as gasoline pump toppers at refueling stations.

Air North Texas members participate in community events and outreach in an effort to promote clean air choices. Educational and marketing materials like “Go Green-Breathe Clean” bracelets and Air Quality Index crayons are distributed to citizens. These materials encourage people to think about air quality and to visit the Web site, www.airnorthtexas.org. This site serves as a comprehensive resource for the general public and Air North Texas partners. Here, residents can sign up for Clean Air Mail, a monthly e-mail with air quality information and tips for reducing emissions, as well as air quality warnings. Another campaign element crucial to the success of Air North Texas has been performance measures such as Web traffic tracking, which is continuously implemented to monitor and evaluate campaign effectiveness. This measure, along with the use of surveys and focus groups, allow the coalition to identify new opportunities to enhance the initiative, all the while promoting clean air choices.

Cool School Challenge — Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, Seattle, Wash.

Simple actions, taken together, can create a climate of change. This is the founding principle of the Cool School Challenge, a climate education program that engages students and teachers in practical strategies to reduce carbon dioxide emissions school-wide. The program also encourages student leadership and empowerment, fostering a new generation of air quality advocates.

The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and partners Puget Sound Energy and Northwest Clean Air Agency built the program around an idea created by environmental science teacher Mike Town and the students of Redmond High School. Inspired by the U.S. Mayor’s Climate Protection Agreement spearheaded by Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels, the Redmond High students decided, “if mayors and cities can take action on climate change, so can students and schools.”

In the Cool School Challenge, student teams conduct energy audits of classrooms, assessing the greenhouse gas emissions of electricity use, waste and recycling practices, transportation, and heating. Classrooms then pledge to shrink their carbon footprint through simple but effective behavior changes, such as turning off one panel of lights, using durable coffee tumblers instead of disposable cups, or carpooling instead of driving alone. The Web-based program is designed for grades 7-12 and includes a Web site (http://www.coolschoolchallenge.org Exit EPA disclaimer), a Challenge toolkit, classroom carbon calculator, classroom activities, and supplemental resources.

To introduce the program into schools, the partners offer free teacher training workshops throughout western Washington, which to date have drawn nearly 200 teachers and educators. Subsequently, more than 30 schools have pledged to reduce their carbon footprints, reporting nearly 600,000 pounds in potential greenhouse gas reductions.

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"Drive Clean Across Texas" Campaign — Texas Department of Transportation & Texas Commission on Environmental Quality

Drive Clean Across Texas (DCAT), a partnership between the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), is the nation’s first statewide public outreach and education campaign designed to motivate drivers to take steps to reduce their personal vehicle emissions.

The campaign, focusing on nine urban areas in Texas with poor air quality, has five simple messages: 1) maintain your vehicle; 2) drive less; 3) buy a “cleaner” vehicle; 4) drive the speed limit; and 5) reduce idling.

DCAT has a successful public outreach program. They advertise to the general public in English and Spanish through TV, radio, billboards, gas pump toppers, and through their website, where they offer free videos, music, and printed materials. The DCAT web site also offers free educational materials to teachers, as well as links to other air quality programs and related sites. DCAT also reaches out to teachers by regularly displaying booths at teacher conferences.

Every two years, DCAT conducts a statewide survey to quantify the effectiveness and success of the program. The latest survey results show that nearly 70 percent of those who were aware of the DCAT message have adopted at least one of the behavioral changes. 

Georgia Radon Education Program — University of Georgia College of Family and Consumer Sciences

Since 2003, the University of Georgia (UGA) Radon Education Program has worked to reduce lung cancer by promoting radon awareness through education, testing, and reducing high radon levels in indoor air. Radon, the second-leading cause of lung cancer, kills approximately 600 Georgians per year. The UGA Program encourages collaboration and partnerships with hospitals, schools, media outlets, and builders.

The program specifically targets children, who are especially susceptible to radon due to their body size and breathing level. From March 2003 through March 2007, UGA met with more than 35,000 people and distributed more than 22,000 radon test kits. Overall, the program has reached out to more than 145,000 people.

In a survey of 2,000 program participants, 96 percent stated that the program was helpful and said it improved their radon knowledge. Increased knowledge was demonstrated by an average test score improvement of 45 points between pre- and post-testing, and 79 percent of participants stated that they planned to test for radon. The program’s success has also been demonstrated through the actions and behaviors of the participants. As many as 163 homes have performed home radon mitigations and 273 families have adopted radon-resistant new construction. The medical savings of these radon mitigations and outreach efforts is estimated at nearly $10 million.

The UGA Radon Education Program is an effective and easily replicable program that greatly impacts the health and wellness of the community.

Life is a Breath of Fresh Air — Auntie Litter, Inc.

Since 1998, Auntie Litter Inc. has served as the lead Education Partner for the Alabama Partners for Clean Air, a consortium of business, government and civic organizations dedicated to improving air quality in the greater Birmingham area. Auntie Litter Inc. creates and implements new programs and materials to teach students and their families in the Jefferson and Shelby counties about the importance of clean air and the harmful effects of air pollution.

Auntie Litter Inc. created an original musical comedy play, “Life is Breath of Fresh Air,” which was performed by professional actors and reached over 50,000 students. The organization also developed a series of entertaining and educational music videos for students in grades 3-8. After watching the videos, students were provided the opportunity to learn more about how to protect the air and their health with reinforcement materials. Then, the videos were condensed into 30-second Public Service Announcements that air on local channels.

Educating children about the importance of taking action to improve air quality is a top priority of Auntie Litter Inc. The organization is currently developing and implementing an Idle Free Zone program for area schools which will include an interactive CD, colorful signs for school driveways, coloring activity pages for students, and a Pollution Patrol Club for kids.

Spare the Air in Greenville County, SC: Improving Air Quality in Greenville County Public Awareness Campaign — Greenville County, South Carolina

Greenville County, South Carolina began implementing an aggressive program in July 2006 called the Improving Air Quality Public Awareness Campaign. Using radio, TV, newspapers, websites, brochures, and billboards, the campaign disperses information to the public about improving air quality. They are also active in community outreach. In addition to discussing air quality at festivals and community events, they also offer educational presentations to organizations, such as municipalities’ planning commissions and city councils.

The County has partnered with public and private entities to host campaign activities such as the “Gas Can Exchange” in April 2007, and a “Car Care Clinic” in May 2007. At these events, residents could trade in old cans for new no-spill plastic containers, and drivers could have their car tire pressure, air filters, fluids, batteries, and emissions checked.

The Awareness Campaign has also encouraged student participation through the Breathe Better Air at School Program at the Fountain Elementary School. The program works to educate students, parents, and staff about the importance of not idling vehicles on campus. Because of these improvements, this program is now being expanded to other schools.

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Carpool Crazy — City of Lawton & Evergreen Productions, Inc., Lawton, OK

The City of Lawton, OK, a heavily car-dependent city, promoted air quality improvements through the development of the Carpool Crazy program that rewarded residents for sharing rides.  The City of Lawton and Evergreen Productions Inc., a public relations firm commissioned by the city, joined forces with local businesses and media, in the summer of 2005, to launch the Carpool Crazy campaign., Carpool Crazy encouraged motorists to share rides and minimize emissions.  Over 5,000 Carpool Crazy decals were distributed through live radio remote kick-off events, at the radio stations, and at City Hall.  Drivers affixed these decals to the back windows of their cars and spotters were sent into the city to look for vehicles with both the marked decal and two or more people in the vehicle.  Instant prizes were announced live on the air and awarded to winning drivers.  These drivers were also entered into a grand prize drawing for a special getaway for two.  Carpool Crazy increased in environmental awareness, reduced CO2 emissions, and improved air quality in the Lawton Metropolitan area. 

Ozone Theater: Setting the Stage for Air Pollution Education — Mothers for Clean Air, Houston, TX

Ozone Theater is a program that uses interactive, performance-based lessons to teach students about important air quality issues.  The program, created by Mothers for Clean Air in partnership with University of Texas Medical Branch Theater Outreach and Education, was developed specifically for the Houston-Galveston area and is closely aligned with state-mandated teaching objectives.  The lessons are taught in a classroom setting in the form of a 35-minute interactive game. One lesson, entitled “Pesky Polluters,” is targeted at pre-K through second grade classes and teaches air quality basics and pollution sources. Children are asked to act out different air pollution sources (e.g., bus or factory).  The program for grades three through five, entitled “Good Ozone, Bad Ozone,” focuses on ozone and the Air Quality Index (AQI). uses a set of colored flags that correspond to the colors of the AQI.  The students act out safe activities for each of these air pollution levels. After the lesson is complete, the school is issued a free set of AQI flags, which is used as an outdoor air quality warning at the school.  According to pre- and post-testing conducted on students receiving these lessons and teachers’ evaluations, Ozone Theater has been especially effective in transmitting air quality lessons to Houston-area students. 

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ConocoPhillips Billings Citizen Advisory Council — ConocoPhillips Billings Refinery

The ConocoPhillips Billings Refinery Citizen Advisory Council (CAC) highlights a special relationship between the refinery and surrounding community. The CAC is a group of citizens representing different sectors of the community charged with the task of establishing a dialogue between the refinery and the public. Through the CAC, the refinery is able to educate and inform the public about routine operations and special refinery activities, as well as receive public feedback on issues of mutual concern. The CAC addresses serious issues such as air quality, safety, aesthetics, and community enhancement. The persistent supervision from this group, coupled with the Refinery’s commitment to reduce emissions, resulted in an overall reduction of SO2 emissions from 2,400 tons in 1992 to 270 tons in 2005. The CAC simple formula to educate and inform is an important first step in addressing and solving problems of clean air.

Pioneering Full-scale Electric Vehicle Motor Sports to Promote Energy Efficient and Environmentally Friendly Automobiles — Brent Singleton

High school student Brent Singleton is showing that youth can be environmentally friendly in a fast way. Mr. Singleton’s passion for electric vehicles made him the first to bring Full-Electric, Hybrid, Tribrid, and Quadbrid vehicles to the world’s most famous land speed raceway, the Bonneville Salt Flats. He is the first-ever individual youth to receive a Clean Air Excellence Award. He will also be honored with the President’s Environmental Youth Award later this month. Mr. Singleton hopes that alternative drive advancements initiated in race cars will lead to improved environmentally-friendly performance capabilities for highway vehicles. By driving his electric vehicle to school on a daily basis, he continues to demonstrate to his peers and the world that more energy efficient and environmentally friendly automobiles are a very realistic option.

Students Fueling the Future Fuel Cell Education Program — Students Fueling the Future, Inc.

Students Fueling the Future is a unique, non-profit educational program. This program teaches educators and students about the environmental impact of using fossil fuels for energy and transportation, the benefits of renewable sources of energy, and fuel cells. The program provides participants with educational materials, supplies, and leadership as they become active in environmental issues within their community. The program includes workshops, school visits, and student activities including oral presentations, designing web sites, and designing and building model fuel cell cars competitions. Recognition for the program is generated through community involvement, information dissemination, and a statewide championship to showcase renewable energy and fuel cell projects.

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AirShare.info: Linking the Nation’s Air Quality Communicators — Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District

AirShare.info Exit EPA disclaimer is an air quality “supersite” specifically targeted to air quality communicators. AirShare brings the nation’s air quality communicators together by providing an unprecedented mix of resources and allows them to easily share information about public outreach and education programs. AirShare is an excellent way to multiply the impact of EPA-funded public education grant projects. AirShare contributors can easily submit air quality projects and items to the database. Search capabilities allow all communicators to quickly identify information, products and items that may be useful in developing their local outreach programs. Extensive lists of key words and search criteria enable communicators

Clean Air Counts — Metropolitan Mayors Caucus

Clean Air Counts is a non-profit campaign that offers a voluntary approach for significantly reducing smog-causing pollutants in the Chicago metropolitan area from sources not traditionally subject to air regulations such as non-industrial businesses, institutions, and households. Clean Air Counts is designed to remove 5 tons of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) per day. Through outreach and education Clean Air Counts focuses on demonstrating the relationship between individual behavior and regional air quality. Participants in the Campaign are asked to pledge their commitment to cleaning the air by selecting, implementing, and reporting on recommended emission strategies. The Campaign also has a website, www.cleanaircounts.org Exit EPA disclaimer , which averages 200 visits a day with 45,000 hits per month. Through the efforts of the nearly 200 businesses and governing bodies that have joined the Campaign, Clean Air Counts is well on its way to meeting its 5 tpd goal.

Tulsa Air Quality Enhancement and Education Program — Indian Nations Council of Governments

The Indian Nations Council of Governments (INCOG) implemented an educational program designed to improve air quality in the Tulsa region by teaching Tulsa high school students the air quality benefits that result from reducing Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). At the same time, INCOG hosted carpool competitions among the area high school driver education programs. During the carpool competition, students were challenged to carpool, bike, walk, or ride the bus to school for six weeks in order to reduce VMT and thus improve air quality in the area. As a result of the program and competition, 600 new drivers were educated about ways to reduce air pollution and more than 1,987 gallons of fuel were saved by reducing 33,792 VMT. These savings resulted in the displacement of 47 lbs of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), 742 lbs of carbon dioxide (CO2), and 49 lbs of nitrogen oxides (NOx).

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A Public Awareness Health and Air Pollution Campaign — Ventura County Air Pollution Control District; Ventura County, California

From July through October 2002, the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) ran the Public Awareness Health and Air Pollution Campaign. To market the campaign, the APCD partnered with local doctors, using their images and words to promote one main message: air pollution is harmful to health and individuals can make choices to benefit the air and their health. The APCD used a variety of media to reach the public, including: four posters distributed throughout the community (with one poster in Spanish); a six-week radio campaign during which 660 one-minute spots were aired (with spots translated for Spanish radio); an eight-page brochure distributed to over 250,000 people; and a media launch at a regional medical center.

Air Victoria – Keep It Clean — City of Victoria and Victoria College; Victoria, Texas

The City of Victoria collaborated with Victoria College to create the Air Victoria — Keep It Clean program to educate the community about air quality issues and reduce emissions associated with urban growth. The campaign includes a number of different outreach strategies: free tune ups for older cars; a partnership with McDonalds to educate the public via tray liners; window displays on buses promoting public transit use; pro-environment billboards with messages in English and Spanish; radio and TV public service announcements; a gas can exchange initiative; and the creation of the Air Victoria Team, a voluntary partnership of small businesses and local government that promotes environmental best practices.

Gas Cap Wrench — Wisconsin Partners for Clean Air in cooperation with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and R.A.M. Products Limited; Southeastern Wisconsin

The Gas Cap Wrench is a device that helps individuals with limited strength or flexibility in their hands tighten and loosen a vehicle gas cap more easily. A loose or missing gas cap can cause up to 30 gallons of gasoline to evaporate from a gas tank each year. In Wisconsin, use of the 30,000 Gas Cap Wrenches being distributed could translate into a savings of up to one million gallons of gasoline per year.

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PM2.5 Forecasting Program — Forsyth County Environmental Affairs Department; Winston-Salem, North Carolina

To provide the public with real-time information concerning particulate matter (PM2.5) levels and their effect on public health, the Forsyth County Environmental Affairs Department began a PM2.5 forecasting program. Year-round, forecasts are provided on a daily basis through the Department's web site, an email list service, a toll-free number, and by newspaper and television broadcasts. The program provides a valuable product to increase public awareness of air quality issues and the seriousness of health problems created by fine particles.

Lawn Care for Cleaner Air — Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District/Louisville, Kentucky

Lawn Care for Cleaner Air, a program of the Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District, educates the public about reducing emissions from gasoline-powered lawn maintenance equipment. The program promotes the use of cleaner alternatives including electric or reel mowers and low-maintenance landscaping techniques.

Active National Directory of Source Emissions Testing — Colleen Hodge, Owner and Executive Producer; Worldwide

The web site www.ActiveSET.org Exit EPA disclaimer provides a global forum to exchange air quality information electronically. The web site helps increase awareness about the importance of clean air and effective methods for reducing harmful emissions at their source. The web site's electronic newsletter provides the latest information on business opportunities, featured firms, announcements, and other useful information. More than 1.7 million stakeholders worldwide have accessed the web site since August 2000.

Partners for Clean Air - Green Pays on Green Days Education Program — Illinois Environmental Protection Agency; Chicago, Illinois

The Partners for Clean Air coalition members have pledged to notify their employees about Ozone Action Days and take actions to reduce air pollution on these days. The coalition's outreach includes a web site, radio advertisements, a billboard campaign, and the Green Pays on Green Days initiative, in which citizens sign a "Clean Air Pledge" to take one or more green actions to improve air quality. A survey showed that, as a result of the overall program, 73 percent of those who heard about an Ozone Action Day took action in response.

Easy Breathers — Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources; Southeastern Wisconsin

Recognizing that driving behavior and purchasing habits develop during the adolescent years, the Easy Breathers program educates teens about simple and inexpensive transportation choices they can make to reduce air pollution. The program includes an educational video and an interactive web site (www.easybreathers.org Exit EPA disclaimer ), both created by students in partnership with the Department of Natural Resources and a multimedia firm. The result is a program that speaks to teenagers in their own language, while conveying the science of mobile source pollution.

EV Challenge — Carolina Electric Vehicle Coalition, Inc. — In partnership with over 30 business and government organizations; Southeastern U.S.

The Electric Vehicle (EV) Challenge educational program uses the activity of electric vehicle construction to teach young people about the air quality effects of their transportation choices. The EV Challenge includes a year-long educational program that has both middle school and high school components. In addition, the EV Challenge provides schools with professional development for teachers, curriculum materials, project funding, technical support, and product discounts through a vendor sponsorship program. The program also operates a mobile classroom, which features educational displays and sample electric vehicles. List of all partners:

Advanced Energy Corporation
CP&L/Progress Energy Corporation
Dominion Virginia/North Carolina Power
Duke Power Company
Energy Office, North Carolina Department of Administration
North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Air Quality Division
U.S. EPA, Office of Transportation and Air Quality

Alternate Neighborhood Transportation, Inc.
Design Dimension
Flying Foto Factory, Inc.
Triangle Electric Auto Association

Tarheel Sports Car Club
Trojan Battery Company
Wake Soil and Water Conservation District

Conway Photo
DC Power Systems
Electric Vehicle Association of the Americas
Electric Vehicles of America
Enterprise Rent-a-Car
Wake Technical Community College
Zapi, Inc.

Classic Car Services
DC Electric Auto Association
Electric Auto Association of Coastal Carolinas
Florida Division of Air Resources Management
Frankie & Zoe's Screenprinting
Hands-On Technology Systems
KTA Services
National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium
North Carolina Department of Agriculture
North Carolina Solar Center
Triangle Clean Cities
TrophyUSA.com, Inc.
York Technical College

Air Pollution Educational and Research Scholarship Program — Mid-Atlantic States Section of the Air and Waste Management

The Air Pollution Educational and Research Scholarship Program awards four $25,000 scholarships each year to doctoral and post-doctoral students. The program enables recipients to pursue research careers in air pollution reduction and brings innovation to the field.

Vapor Recovery Compliance Assistance Manual on Interactive Compact Disc — California Air Resources Board; California

Vapor recovery systems are designed to recover the equivalent of 36 million gallons of gasoline per year. The success of these systems depends on the hundreds of local inspectors and industry personnel who must be trained and updated on test procedures and certified equipment for vapor recovery systems. The California Air Resources Board has created the two-ounce Vapor Recovery Interactive CD to replace the two-volume, 11-pound paper manual previously used to convey this material. The environmentally-friendly and cost-effective CD is easy to navigate and provides links to the Internet for up-to-date information.

Agricultural and Outdoor Burning Notification and Information System — Washington State Department of Ecology; Washington

The Washington State Department of Ecology Agricultural and Outdoor "Burn Team" has developed a web site to provide access to information related to agricultural and outdoor burning. The site provides information on where and when burning will occur to help people with respiratory diseases to manage exposures. The web site promotes clean air by providing easy access to information on burn restrictions, permitting requirements, best management practices for emissions reductions, and burning alternatives.

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Tour de Sol: The Great American Green Transportation Festival — Northeast Sustainable Energy Association;  Northeast U.S.

The Tour de Sol Festival is a unique, year-round public education campaign that culminates in a series of festivals linked by a road-rally competition.  The program educates consumers about transportation and environmental decisions. Annually, over 40,000 people attend Tour de Sol festivals, and 50 to 90 million learn about the festivals and transportation options through the media. Clean air solutions are promoted through the festivals, the official program, a public relations campaign, school curricula and workshops, and the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association's web site (http://www.nesea.org) Exit EPA disclaimer .

Save Planet Polluto — Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District; Sacramento, California.

Save Planet Polluto is an innovative CD-ROM adventure designed to teach air pollution concepts to children in grades four through eight. Save Planet Polluto teaches children that mobile sources are a major source of air pollution and shows them how the choices people make every day can have a positive or negative effect on air quality. 

Great Stove and Fireplace Changeout — Hearth Products Association and four regional affiliates; Great Lakes Region.

The Great Stove and Fireplace Changeout was a co-operative public/private program designed to educate residents of the Great Lakes states about the impact of woodsmoke on toxic loading in the Lakes (specifically Benzo(a)Pyrene levels).  As part of the program, the Hearth Industry offered a discount to any resident who surrendered an old woodstove or fireplace insert for destruction.  According to the 120 participating retailers, over 1,200 old woodstoves and woodstove inserts were removed and destroyed. Results also indicate that 40 percent of the households switched from wood heat to gas and the other 60 percent moved to EPA-certified woodstoves or pellet stoves. The reduction in Benzo(a)Pyrene annual emissions is estimated to be at least 4,870 grams per year.

American Indian Air Quality Training Program — Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals; Flagstaff, Arizona.

Since 1992, the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP), based at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, has offered air quality management education and support to Indian tribes. ITEP's American Indian Air Quality Training Program provides comprehensive air quality management training through workshops tailored to address tribal needs.  ITEP also provides air-management technical support and problem-solving assistance to tribes and is a clearinghouse for tribal air quality data.

Air Adventures Puppet Show and Music Video — North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Division of Air Quality; North Carolina.

The North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources created the Air Adventures Puppet Show and Music Video to educate children about ozone and air quality.  Throughout the puppet show video, children are exposed to the concepts of air pollution, specifically ozone, and are educated about its effects on people and vegetation.  In addition, children are taught common actions that can be taken to reduce ozone formation and are introduced to the Air Quality Index color codes.  

TNRCC MeteoStar System — Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission; Austin, Texas.

The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) MeteoStar System is an automated, quality-controlled environmental data collection and reporting system that displays both near real-time and historical data on easy-to-use Internet Web pages. The MeteoStar System collects air and water quality data every five minutes at monitoring sites located throughout Texas.  Several thousand users have subscribed to the MeteoStar e-mail ozone forecast and alert notifications. The System is also used to create and display animated maps that show ozone movement.  The simplicity and efficiency of the MeteoStar System has allowed the TNRCC to expand its monitoring network from 32 air monitoring stations to over 150 air and water monitoring stations without added labor costs. 

Tally the Toucan Rideshare Education Program — Palm Tran; West Palm Beach, Florida.

Palm Tran, the transit agency that provides bus service for Palm Beach County commuters, has developed the Toucan Rideshare Education Program. This Program is designed to teach children from kindergarten through fifth grade about the environment as it relates to public transportation (bus, car pooling, and the train).  In spring 2001, the Program gave over 83 presentations to more than 2,000 students in 14 schools. Children learned how public transit affects the environment and how to use public transportation. Partnering with South Florida Commuter Services, the Florida Department of Transportation, and the Palm Beach County School Board, Palm Tran has been successful in teaching potential drivers about the benefits of using public transportation and ridesharing.

Minnesota E85 Project — Minnesota E85 Team; Minnesota.

The private-public Minnesota E85 Project provides motorists a competitive, bio-based gasoline alternative that is better for air quality, the economy, and national energy security. E85 is an alternative fuel blend of 85 percent ethyl alcohol (ethanol) and only 15 percent petroleum. This alternative fuel is designed for use in many new car models, or flexible fuel vehicles, which may fuel on any combination of E85 and/or gasoline.  In two years, E85 sales in the state have grown by 600 percent.  

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Air Quality Index Work Group. This Work Group strives to promote a clear message about the relationship between air pollution and public health throughout the Tampa Bay Area. The Work Group created and distributes daily the Air Quality Index Resource Guide, an information kit that educates local media sources about the Air Quality Index.

Air World CD-ROM. Developed by the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District and Media 360, Air World is an innovative approach to air quality outreach, using video-clips, photos, graphics, and more to provide air quality information to users of all ages.

Pima County Clean Air Program. Pima County's Program promotes a Voluntary No-Drive Day Program, which encourages Arizona residents to use alternative modes of transportation, reduce vehicle miles traveled, and telecommute or work compressed schedules. This outreach effort reinforces the direct relationship between motor vehicle use, traffic congestion, and air pollution.

Going Places, Making Choices: Transportation and the Environmental Curriculum. The National 4-H Council encourages individual action through its Going Places, Making Choices curriculum. The curriculum provides students in grades 9 through 12 and educators the tools and information necessary to make more-informed transportation choices.

Susquehanna Valley Ozone Action Program. This Program informs and educates the public about Susquehanna Valley's ground-level ozone problem. With the help of its private sector partners, the Partnership produced educational and promotional materials distributed at community events. The Program prompts residents and businesses to adopt practices that decrease ground-level ozone production.

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If you have any questions about the Clean Air Excellence Awards Program, please contact Catrice Jefferson of EPA's Office of Air and Radiation at (202) 564-1668, or jefferson.catrice@epa.gov.

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