Environment and Conservation Seeks Environmental Achievers

The Department of Environment and Conservation is inviting Tennesseans to submit nominations for the Governor’s 2013 Environmental Stewardship Awards. The awards recognize Tennesseans who go above and beyond to protect the state’s diverse environment.“The continued health of Tennessee’s air, land and water is critical to keeping our communities strong,” Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam said.  “It is important to recognize the innovative efforts and unique projects that conserve and protect our natural resources because they provide economic benefits and boost Tennessee’s overall sustainability.” 
The Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Awards cover 10 categories: Building Green; Clean Air; Energy and Renewable Resources; Environmental Education and Outreach (business category); Environmental Education and Outreach (school category); Land Use; Materials Management; Natural Heritage; Sustainable Performance and Lifetime Achievement. 
Any individual, business, organization, educational institution or agency is eligible, provided they are located in Tennessee and projects were completed during the 2012 calendar year.  All nominees must have a minimum of three consecutive years in overall environmental compliance with the Department of Environment and Conservation.  Self-nominations are encouraged.
“The environment significantly impacts our daily lives and today’s efforts to ensure our communities remain healthy will affect future generations,” said Environment and Conservation Commissioner Bob Martineau.  “Tennesseans continue to make great strides in protecting our environment and these annual awards are an opportunity to acknowledge the people and organizations that work so hard to increase stewardship efforts across the state.” 
A panel of judges representing agricultural, conservation, forestry, environmental and academic professionals will select award recipients based on criteria including on-the-ground achievement, innovation and public education.  The deadline for nominations is March 29, 2013.  Award recipients will be announced in May 2013. 
For more information about each category, judging criteria and nomination forms, visit TDEC’s website at www.tn.gov/environment/awards.