Agriculture + Environment

City recognizes environmental leaders

By April 12, 2011

The 17th Annual City of Davis Environmental Recognition Awards will be presented at the April 19 Davis City Council meeting.

This year’s recipients are Judy Moores and Lynne Nittler in the individual category, Waste Busters in the business category and the Holmes Junior High Green Team in the non-profit category.

The City’s Natural Resources Commission created the awards in 1995 to honor and recognize the environmental accomplishments of individuals, businesses and non-profit organizations working in and around the Davis area.

Moores and Nittler, nominated by Alan Pryor, are the co-chairs of the Cool Davis Foundation, a new non-profit organization formed last year to support the actions and activities of the Cool Davis Initiative. They have formed low carbon diet groups throughout Davis, and organized the running of the Cool Davis Green Festival last year. Other accomplishments include the sponsoring of two public showings of “No-Impact Man” at the Veteran Memorial Theater and the authoring of several articles that have appeared in The Davis Enterprise supporting the Cool Davis Initiative’s projects and goals.

The Holmes Junior High Green Team, nominated by Michael Dufresne, was organized by ninth-graders after witnessing a “Do One Thing” for Planet Earth Environmental Awareness Assembly. The group is advised by science teacher Martha Quenon.

The students of the Green Team are committed to spreading the “Do One Thing” for Planet Earth message to the entire Holmes community by creating environmental awareness and resource conservation presentations and by leading a campaign to raise awareness about recycling on campus through posters and advertising in the daily bulletin. The Green Team has also initiated a food composting program at lunch for the school, even enlisting the cooperation of the kitchen staff to participate.

Waste Busters, also nominated by Pryor, provides consultation and event services aimed toward producing zero waste or near zero waste events. They have provided their services for the Davis Farmers Market, which now has a 90 percent diversion rate. They have also advised the Davis Downtown Business Association on how to reduce waste during the Celebrate Davis event. Michael Siminitus, the principal of Waster Busters, is a regular participant of the Natural Resource Commission Zero Waste Subcommittee and has made contributions toward their efforts to restrict plastic bags in Davis.

Also nominated were:

* Christal Waters, who has been responsible for organizing numerous elementary school bike safety rodeos;

* Jo Ellen Ryan and Gene Trapp, who created “Friends of the West Pond” in an effort to improve areas of the West Davis Pond;

* The CALFIRE Nursery Program, which produces affordable and valuable local sources of the plant materials that are used throughout the region for conservation projects;

* The Cool Davis Foundation;

* The Davis Cemetery District, for taking environmental impact initiatives in water conservation and run-off, fuel use, electricity conservation, waste management and recycling, chemical use and animal habitat within the district;

* Quail Ridge Wilderness Conservancy, an environmental organization with a focus on protecting California landscapes;

* The UC Davis Arboretum, for being a leader in the fields of sustainable horticulture and environmental education; and

* West Yost Associates, a consulting engineering firm formed to provide sustainable solutions that benefit the environment, focusing on water, wastewater, reclaimed water and stormwater.

Special to The Enterprise

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