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EPA Honors Clean Air Projects for 17th Year

01/12/2021
Contact Information: 
EPA Press Office (press@epa.gov)

WASHINGTON (January 12, 2021) — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes seven groups and individuals for their innovative work on clean air projects. The 2020 Clean Air Excellence Awards were given to state, local, tribal, and private sector programs that educate the public in improving air quality or reducing harmful air pollutants that threaten health and the environment.

“For 17 years, the Clean Air Excellence awards have honored those who go above and beyond to improve air quality both at the local and national level,” said Anne Austin, Principal Deputy Assistant Administrator for EPA's Office of Air and Radiation. “Our winners’ inspirational dedication to environmental protection is a model for all of us, and we look forward to many more years of clean air innovation and collaboration.”  

This year’s winners include:

Clean Air Technology Award: Caterpillar Inc. (Deerfield, Ill.) – Changing the Dynamic in Dual Fuel: Cat 3512E Tier 4 DGB. The first and only Dynamic Gas Blending (DGB) engine in the industry certified to U.S. EPA Tier 4 Final emission standards, the Cat 3512E enables operations to reduce diesel consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions while maintaining power, performance, and reliability.

Community Action Award: Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (Baton Rouge, La.) – TLC Ambient Air Monitoring Program. The Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) has been working to promote environmental justice in Louisiana for almost 30 years. The LDEQ began fostering relationships with under-served communities by bringing in assistance via the Temporary Located Community (TLC) Air Monitoring Program. TLC Air Monitors collect ambient air quality data in neighborhoods, and data is relayed to LDEQ’s website, providing real-time data on the extent of outdoor pollution and air quality pollution trends of certain regulated pollutants.

Education/Outreach Award: South Coast Air Quality Management District (Diamond Bar, Calif.) – South Coast AQMD Mobile App. The South Coast AQMD Mobile App is the official air quality app for residents of the South Coast Air Basin. Using a blend of data from regulatory monitoring stations, low-cost sensors and an air quality model run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the app is now the most advanced in the region. With over 1,200 distinct locations, residents can get real-time air quality information for multiple cities right down to their neighborhood.

State/Tribal/Local Air Quality Policy Innovations Award: National Tribal Air Association, administered by Northern Arizona University's (NAU) Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (Flagstaff, Ariz.) – National Tribal Air Association (NTAA) is the nation's second largest Tribal membership organization with 151 federally recognized member Tribes. Led by an Executive Committee (EC) made up of Tribal air leaders across the country, the NTAA's mission is to advance air quality management policies and programs consistent with the needs, interests, and unique legal status of American Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives.

Transportation Efficiency Innovations Award: Aperia Technologies (Burlingame, Calif.) – Halo Tire Inflator. Aperia Technologies is on a mission to increase transportation sustainability through clean technology innovation. The Halo Tire Inflator provides the greatest sustainability benefit per dollar invested for trucking fleets than any other retrofittable efficiency technology currently on the market. By actively combating tire underinflation, Halo not only helps commercial vehicle trucking fleets tackle their sustainability objectives, but also delivers a rapid return on investment by mitigating the impact of tire underinflation. 

Gregg Cooke Visionary Program Award: Port of Long Beach (Long Beach, Calif) – Port of Long Beach Community Grants Program. The Port of Long Beach Community Grants Program is a voluntary seaport mitigation program, investing in community-based projects to reduce environmental and public health impacts from Port operations on surrounding communities. The Grants Program funds projects that are scientifically proven to reduce air, noise, traffic, and water pollution.

Thomas W. Zosel Outstanding Individual Achievement Award: Lucinda Smith (Fort Collins, Co). Lucinda Smith, City of Fort Collins Environmental Services Department Director, has dedicated her career to working on environmental programs at the municipal level. Lucinda Smith’s work has involved leading updates to the City’s Air Quality Plan. During her tenure, she also has led climate action planning efforts including adoption of greenhouse gas emission reduction goals.

Established in 2000, the Clean Air Excellence awards recognize programs and individuals that serve as pioneers in their fields, advance public understanding of air pollution, and improve air quality. Entries are judged by the EPA and the Clean Air Advisory Committee, and winners were recognized today at a virtual awards ceremony.

More information on the award winners: https://www.epa.gov/caaac/clean-air-excellence-awards