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New York State Environmental Excellence Awards

Environmental Excellence Awards 2018

Celebrating 15 Years of NYS Innovation - 2018 NYS Environmental Excellence Awards


Wednesday November 14, 2018


10:00 AM: Registration and Tabling

10:15 AM: Welcome

10:30 AM: Innovators Leading by Example: Case Studies of Past Award Winners

11:30 AM: Turning Ideas into Solutions: A Virtual Tour of Skidmore's Innovations

12:00 Noon: Lunch (must pre-register)

1:00 PM - 4:00 PM: Awards Ceremony and Reception at Gannett Auditorium


Skidmore College

815 North Broadway

Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

  • Morning Sessions at Murray Aikins Dining Hall
  • Award Ceremony at Gannett Auditorium

If you plan to attend, please register for the event. For more information, email NYSDEC or call 518-402-9160.

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation will recognize an upstate ski resort, a medical college, a wastewater treatment district, a community college and a partnership to enhance environmental stewardship. These efforts are outstanding examples of environmental sustainability, social responsibility and economic viability.

Come learn about these exciting examples of excellence!

Apply Now …

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is accepting applications for the 2018 New York State Environmental Excellence Awards. This marks the 15th anniversary of the awards! Completed applications must be submitted no later than Friday, April 13, 2018.

2018 Application (PDF, 591 KB) - This application is fillable. Please save to your computer before entering data.

Tips for Applicants (PDF, 436 KB) - Refer to this guide to help develop a competitive application.

Webinar: Lead By Example! Be a NYS Environmental Excellence Award Winner (link leaves DEC website and starts the webinar in a separate application)

This webinar provides details about the NYS Environmental Excellence Awards program and tips for submitting a competitive application. Participants will also hear from three previous award recipients about the importance and benefits of receiving statewide recognition and become part of a network of organizations that are leading by example.

The webinar will answer your toughest (and most basic) awards questions and you will:

  • Learn about the benefits of this recognition;
  • Get tips for submitting a competitive application;
  • Get inspired by hearing from previous winners.

The Environmental Excellence Awards are given annually in recognition of outstanding, innovative and sustainable projects or programs and unique partnerships that are contributing to a healthier environment and economy and serving as models of excellence. Award winners are an elite group of committed organizations leading by example as serving as models of excellence within their industry and community.

Eligible applicants include businesses (i.e., small, medium and large businesses, manufacturing, power generation, renewable energy, retail, agri-business, hospitality, sports, etc.); not-for-profit organizations; education, health care and recreational facilities; individual(s) and local, state, federal and Indian Nation government agencies.

Winners are honored each year at an awards ceremony. This year, a 15th anniversary event will be held in November. Those receiving awards will be asked to present and display information about their award-winning project or program. Some benefits of receiving an award include enhanced visibility as a sector leader and furthering your organization's mission through networking and marketing opportunities. For additional information, contact the Pollution Prevention Unit at: or call (518) 402-9469.

Get Recognized

Become part of an elite, statewide network of award winners! Since 2004, the program has honored 80 outstanding organizations for significant environmental benefits such as:

  • reducing or eliminating more than 174,000 metric tons of CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions;
  • producing at least 1.4 million kilowatt hours of electricity from solar installations and saving 214 million kilowatt hours of electricity;
  • reducing the use of petroleum products by more than 12 million gallons;
  • reducing water consumption by more than 90 million gallons;
  • capturing at least 46 million gallons of stormwater;
  • diverting nearly 350,000 tons of waste from landfills, including more than 2 tons of pharmaceutical waste and 6 tons of batteries annually;
  • composting nearly 224,000 tons of organic material;
  • eliminating the use of at least 400,000 single-use plastic shopping bags;
  • preserving thousands of acres of open space, planting thousands of trees, protecting sensitive and critical habitats and improving the health of lakes, ponds and other water resources;
  • engaging millions of adults and students in sustainable practices at home, work, school and while recreating or attending a sporting event; and
  • generating more than $2.5 million in revenue from transforming waste into opportunities by diverting reusable materials from the landfill.

Get Inspired

Award-winning projects showcase applicants who are:

  • Implementing innovative approaches and technologies
  • Advancing sustainable practices and generating economic growth
  • Harnessing the power of unique partnerships
  • Achieving extraordinary outcomes
  • Inspiring others to undertake like-minded projects
Picture of Finger Lakes ReUse honored in 2016
Finger Lakes ReUse honored in 2016

Project topics include but are not limited to:

  • Green infrastructure projects
  • Initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Adaptations to climate change
  • Cutting-edge, "clean-tech" and pollution prevention technologies
  • Initiatives to "green" businesses, farms, schools, health-care and recreational facilities, etc.
  • Innovative wind, solar or biomass projects
  • Creative natural resource/habitat protection or restoration efforts
  • Energy efficiency improvements
  • Innovative education/training programs
  • Innovative waste reduction and recycling efforts
  • Manufacturing process improvements
  • Creative approaches to advance "grown locally" or "farm to table"

For details about award winning projects, read the case studies below. Case studies about award-winning projects in the business and government sectors are being developed and will be posted upon completion. If you would like more information about business and government award winners, contact the Pollution Prevention Unit at or call (518) 402-9469.

Being an award winner gives your organization or business more visibility. Read about three award winners showcased in the February 2018 Conservationist magazine (page 14) (PDF, 13.2 MB).

2017 Award Winners:

Picture of Solar Wall - Mother Clara Hale Bus Depot (NYC) honored in 2016
Solar Wall - Mother Clara Hale Bus Depot (NYC) honored in 2016

In 2017, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation was pleased to recognize seven outstanding organizations at the 14th Annual New York State Environmental Excellence Awards Ceremony for their state-of-the-art programs and commitment to environmental sustainability, social responsibility and economic viability.

To read about them, see our 2017 press release.

Past Award Winners:

2016 press release

2015 press release (link leaves DEC website)

2004 - 2014 "Who's Who" Winners (PDF, 1.2 MB)

More about New York State Environmental Excellence Awards:

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    Bureau of Waste Reduction and Recycling
    Pollution Prevention Unit
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    Albany, NY 12233-7253
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