EPA Recognizes the Presidio Trust in San Francisco as Federal Green Challenge Winner
SAN FRANCISCO (Jan. 27, 2022) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is announcing awards for federal facilities across the country, in recognition of their practical, cost-effective measures to conserve resources as part of the Federal Green Challenge. In California, EPA is recognizing the Presidio Trust—the federal agency that preserves San Francisco’s Presidio National Park—with a regional Federal Green Challenge award for its leadership in conserving resources, promoting efficiency, and building a circular economy.
The Challenge, which began in 2013, is a national effort under EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management Program to encourage agencies to reduce the federal government's environmental impact. Reducing the size of a facility’s environmental footprint conserves natural resources and reduces pollution that contributes to climate change.
“It’s going to take a whole-of-government approach to build a more sustainable future, and the awardees announced today are leading the charge,” said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. “These agencies are addressing the impacts of the climate crisis by reducing the use of natural resources, resulting in an estimated cost savings across the federal government of $36 million in 2019.”
“Congratulations to the Presidio Trust on its recognition in this year’s Federal Green Challenge,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha Guzman. “We applaud our federal partner for its innovative effort to reduce waste and build a circular economy, while preserving the Presidio site here in San Francisco as an enduring resource for the American people.”
The Presidio Trust reduced their Construction and Demolition (C&D) waste stream, consisting of construction materials and other bulky items related to management of residential and commercial properties within the Presidio of San Francisco. When the Presidio Trust learned that 75% of their C&D waste stream went to landfill, they worked with their waste hauler to add additional construction materials collection for recycling, hosted training for over 80 staff, and developed high quality recycling signs and maps. The Presidio Trust has recycled 56 tons of co-mingled C&D material, 56 tons of metal, 44 tons of carpet, and 7.5 tons of cardboard. Overall, the amount of material kept out of the landfill rose from 40% to 68% in the nine months post-training.
“The Presidio Trust has been a model in Federal waste reduction for over two decades. More recently, we committed to becoming a zero waste park,” said Abby Morris, Presidio Trust Zero Waste Coordinator. “Our strategies are simple: monitor our disposal to find opportunities for improvement, work with our haulers to maximize recycling opportunities, and educate the staff and community. Buy-in from our on-the-ground staff has been the key to our success.”
Caption: The Presidio Trust recycled 44 tons of carpet and carpet padding.
Over the lifespan of the program from 2013-2021, more than 400 federal agencies have made many changes to become more sustainable. Some high-level achievements have resulted in over three million tons of waste being diverted from landfills and 3,000 tons of e-waste being recycled. Agencies have avoided purchasing 15,000 pounds of office paper by switching to electronic documents. The federal government has purchased more electric and hybrid vehicles, while reducing the fleet distance traveled by 28 million miles. These efforts and more have resulted in approximately $200 million saved for American taxpayers.
For more information on the Federal Green Challenge and this year’s winners, visit www.epa.gov/fgc.
Learn more about EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region. Connect with us on Facebook and on Twitter.