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EPA Recognizes Leaders in the Prevention and Diversion of Waste; the 2019 WasteWise National Award Winners

New York and New Jersey Winners Announced

04/20/2020
Contact Information: 
Sonia Mohabir (mohabir.sonia@epa.gov )
(212) 637-3241

NEW YORK  – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the 2019 winners of the national WasteWise awards. EPA is recognizing the outstanding accomplishments of 11 national WasteWise partner organizations. EPA Region 2 also announced its regional winners in New York and New Jersey.

“As we begin to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, it is fitting to highlight these WasteWise partners for their dedication to waste reduction, environmental stewardship and sustainable materials management,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “These efforts not only provide environmental and cost savings benefits, but they also increase the efficiency of these businesses and organizations positioning them for greater success.”

“WasteWise is an excellent example of the EPA partnering with communities and organizations to achieve environmental and economic benefits through resource management and waste prevention,” said EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez. “We commend sustainability-focused organizations like these for increasing awareness and knowledge about waste issues and providing examples for other organizations to take responsible actions toward improving the environment.”

This year’s winners used innovative best practices and tailored efforts to help them prevent and reduce waste from going into landfills and incinerators, such as:

  • Converting excess materials into new products.
  • Providing specialized training for staff on waste prevention and diversion.
  • Recycling numerous materials including pallets, scrap metal, paper, cardboard boxes, automotive fluids and parts, styrofoam and plastic bags.
  • Composting on-site and returning grass clippings back onto lawns.

One of this year’s winners collected plastic stretch film that was then recycled into trash can liners, which the winner purchased for use on their campus, providing the feedstock and market for that material. Another winner worked with a vendor to convert over 200,000 pounds of unusable liquid soap product into a commercial floor cleaner, achieving source reduction, the highest level of the waste management hierarchy.

WasteWise is one of EPA’s longest-running voluntary programs and celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2019. EPA’s WasteWise program encourages organizations to achieve sustainability and to reduce waste. In 2018, our national WasteWise partners, including today’s award winners, collectively reported preventing and diverting more than 1.9 million tons of municipal solid waste that would otherwise be disposed in landfills or incinerated, saving close to 100 million dollars in avoided landfill tipping fees. Of this amount, WasteWise partners reported preventing (also called source reducing) more than 890,000 tons of waste, meaning that no waste was created in the first place, EPA’s most preferred waste management method.

Every year EPA recognizes WasteWise partners in several categories who report the best overall improvement in waste prevention and recycling activities when compared to the previous year.

The 2019 national award winners are:

College/University Category

Partner of the Year: Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, Michigan

Local Government Category

Partner of the Year: City of Chesapeake Garage, Chesapeake, Virginia

Honorable Mention: Sand Creek Station Golf Course, Newton, Kansas

Tribal Government Category

Partner of the Year: Chumash Casino Resort, Santa Ynez, California

Non-profit Organization Category

Partner of the Year: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston Massachusetts

Small Business Category

Partner of the Year: Ravitz Family Markets, Price Rite Supermarkets, Inc., Camden, New Jersey

Honorable Mention: Home Market Foods, Norwood, Massachusetts

Large Business Category

Partner of the Year: Rooms to Go, Seffner, Florida

Honorable Mention: Peace Dining Corporation, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Very Large Business Category

Partner of the Year: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Washington

Honorable Mention: L Brands, Inc., Columbus, Ohio

The 2019 regional award winners are:

DC Safety Sales Company, Hauppauge, New York

“The WasteWise program has been a great value to DC Safety. Using their program has aided us in selecting effective goals to accomplish our commitment to our environment. It has been quite rewarding and encouraging seeing your efforts quantified. WasteWise program reporting has become a stimulus for further improvements in our environmental management system.” - Debra Restmeyer, QA & Regulatory Manager

Just Salad LLC, New York, New York

“Just Salad’s Reusable Bowl program proves that reusables can serve as a viable alternative to single-use disposables in the fast-casual industry. It’s a compelling program that simultaneously fosters guest loyalty and reduces plastic waste.” Sandra Noonan, Chief Sustainability Officer

Laddey Clark & Ryan LLP, Sparta, New Jersey

“Our entire firm regularly comes together to support causes that matter to us and our community. We decided well over ten years ago that waste prevention was one of our priorities, and we continue to escalate our efforts.” - Thomas N. Ryan, Managing Partner

Mayo Performing Arts Center, Morristown, New Jersey

“MPAC is proud of our sustainability initiatives and efforts. We have eliminated single use plastic bags, eliminated plastic straws and cocktail stirrers, and increased our recycling program by over 40%. We are proudest to state we recycle 45% of our generated waste, including bottles, plastics, cardboard and program books.” - Lee Kaloidis, Operations Director

Raritan Valley Community College, North Branch, New Jersey

“We had no idea that the program would lead to such a dramatic increase in recycling. Everyone gave it their full support. Intern Deidre Supple deserves a lot of credit for envisioning and implementing the program.” - Sue Dorward, Sustainability & Energy Coordinator

Ravitz Family Markets, ShopRite in Cherry Hill, Marlton and Mount Laurel, New Jersey

“Waste reduction is just the way we do things now. Newer employees have never known another way of conducting business.” - Ken Brahl, Senior Director of Labor Relations

University of Albany, State University of New York, Albany, New York

“Our students play a vital role in furthering our waste diversion efforts. The research and educational outreach they provide to our campus is invaluable and provides them real world experience as change agents.” - Dr. Mary Ellen Mallia, Director of Sustainability

Cummins, Inc.'s Jamestown Engine Plant, Lakewood, New York

Evelyn Hill, Inc., New York, New York

More information about each winner’s efforts and results is available at: https://www.epa.gov/smm/wastewise#AwardsandAwardWinners

Background

The WasteWise program is part of EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management efforts that promote the use and reuse of materials more productively over their entire life cycles. All U.S. businesses, governments, academic institutions and non-profit organizations can join WasteWise as a partner, an endorser or both. Partners demonstrate how they reduce waste, practice environmental stewardship and incorporate sustainable materials management into their waste management practices. Endorsers promote enrollment in WasteWise as part of a comprehensive approach to help their stakeholders realize the economic benefits to reducing waste. For more information, visit: https://www.epa.gov/smm/wastewise.

Follow EPA Region 2 on Twitter at http://twitter.com/eparegion2 and visit our Facebook page, http://facebook.com/eparegion2.

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