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For Release: Thursday, April 12, 2012

DEC Accepting Applications for Environmental Excellence Awards

Applications are now being accepted for the 2012 Environmental Excellence Awards program, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced today. The awards program recognizes outstanding, innovative and sustainable projects or programs. Eligible applicants include businesses, educational institutions, not-for-profit organizations, facilities, government agencies and individuals implementing innovative, sustainable actions or working in creative partnership to improve and protect New York's environmental resources and contribute to a viable economy.

DEC is especially interested in acknowledging projects that achieve significant environmental benefits through: innovative and cutting-edge pollution prevention technologies, manufacturing process improvements, initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, projects using green infrastructure practices, programs to "green" schools and businesses, energy efficiency and green energy production efforts, waste reduction and recycling efforts, and innovative environmental protection and restoration efforts.

Completed applications for the 2012 awards must be post marked no later than Friday, May 18, 2012. Award winners will be honored at a ceremony held in late fall 2012. Winners will have an opportunity to present and display information about their award winning project or program.

Over the past nine years, previous award winners have helped improve New York's environment through initiatives that have eliminated 2.1 million pounds of hazardous waste, saved 26 million kilowatt hours of electricity, reduced water use by 15 million gallons, composted 2.2 million pounds of food waste, recycled 383 million pounds of solid waste and preserved 149,000 acres of open space.

Information about the Environmental Excellence Awards program, the application materials and information on past award winners is available on DEC's website; by writing to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation, Pollution Prevention Unit, 625 Broadway, Albany, New York 12233-1750; by phone to DEC's Pollution Prevention Unit at (518) 402-9469 or by email at awards@dec.ny.gov.

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