News Releases from Region 04
EPA Recognizes Rooms to Go in Suwanee, Georgia for Outstanding Waste Reduction Efforts
ATLANTA --- Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes the waste reduction accomplishments of Rooms to Go in Suwanee, Ga. along with the other 28 participants in and endorsers of EPA's Waste Wise program and EPA's Food Recovery Challenge. These collaborative initiatives apply sustainable materials management practices to decrease wasted food and municipal and industrial wastes in the United States, leading to economic and environmental improvements. EPA provides tools, resources and support to help participants establish baselines, set objectives, track progress and realize their waste reduction goals. EPA reviews the data submitted by participants by employing an extensive quality assurance process.
"Food Recovery Challenge participants diverted nearly 606,000 tons of wasted food from entering landfills or incinerators in 2014, nearly 88,600 tons of which were donated to people in need," said Mathy Stanislaus, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. "These innovative efforts will help us achieve our ambitious national wasted food reduction goal - a 50 percent reduction by 2030. I encourage other organizations to follow their lead by joining the Food Recovery Challenge."
In 2014, nearly 800 governments, businesses and organizations participated in EPA's Food Recovery Challenge, including grocers, educational institutions, sports and entertainment venues and restaurants. These entities diverted wasted food from entering landfills or incinerators through a variety of innovative actions, including creative re-use of trimmings by university dining staff; donating excess, wholesome food to food banks, shelters and soup kitchens; composting in urban settings; and using wasted food to produce electricity.
EPA recognizes Food Recovery Challenge participants and endorsers with awards in two categories: data-driven and narrative. The data-driven award recipients achieved the highest percent of wasted food diversion and prevention in their sector in 2014. Narrative award winners excelled in the areas of source reduction, leadership, innovation, education and outreach, and endorsement.
Data-driven Improvement by Sector:
Colleges and Universities: Salem State University, Salem, Massachusetts
K-12 Schools: Pearl City High School, Honolulu, Hawaii
Grocers: Sprouts Farmers Market: 24, Tucson, Arizona
Hospitality: Ortega National Parks, LLC: White Sands Trading Company, Alamogordo, New Mexico
Restaurants and Food Service Providers: Serendipity Catering, Denver, Colorado
Sports and Entertainment Venues: SAVORChicago-McCormick Place South, Chicago Illinois
Other Organization: Orange County Sheriff's Department, Theo Lacy Facility, Orange, California
Source Reduction Winner: University California (UC), Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, California
Source Reduction Honorable Mention: Clark University, Worchester, Massachusetts
Leadership Winner: MB Financial Park at Rosemont/Village of Rosemont, Rosemont, Illinois
Innovation Winner: Crystal Creamery, Modesto, California
Innovation Honorable Mention: City of Philadelphia, Philadelphia Prison System, Philadelphia Pennsylvania
Education and Outreach Winner: Keene State College, Keene, New Hampshire
Endorser Winner: Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
WasteWise participants also reported impressive results in 2014, preventing and diverting more than 6.7 million tons of municipal and industrial waste from being disposed. These colleges and universities, federal, local and tribal governments, businesses and non-profit organizations implemented a variety of waste prevention and recycling initiatives to both reduce waste and increase efficiencies throughout their operations.
EPA recognizes exceptional WasteWise participants for their annual improvement, overall improvement and waste prevention performance by sector in 2014. Additionally, the endorser award recognizes outstanding efforts to promote WasteWise as a means to help organizations reduce waste and promote overall sustainable materials management.
Federal Government Winner: U.S. Postal Service Headquarters Facilities, Orlando, Florida
Federal Government Honorable Mention: The Presidio Trust, San Francisco, California
Tribal Government Winner: Chumash Casino Resort, Santa Ynez, California
Local Government Winner: City of Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Small Business Winner: Exel Lockport, Lockport, New York
Small Business Honorable Mention: Command Packaging, Vernon, California
Mid-Size Business Winner: Madison Precision Products, Madison, Indiana
Large Business Winner: Commonwealth Edison Company, Terrace, Illinois
Large Business Honorable Mention: Rooms to Go, Suwanee, Georgia
Very Large Business Winner: Toyota Motor North America, Torrance, California
Very Large Business Honorable Mention: Kohl's Department Stores, Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
College and University Winner: Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado
College and University Winner: Clark University, Worchester, Massachusetts
Non-profit Organization Winner: Cannon Grange #152, Wilton, Connecticut
Endorser Winner: Global Fiberglass Solutions, Inc., Bellevue, Washington
For more information on WasteWise: http://www3.epa.gov/epawaste/conserve/smm/wastewise/
For more information on the Food Recovery Challenge: http://www2.epa.gov/sustainable-management-food
Connect with EPA Region 4 on Facebook: www.facebook.com/eparegion4
And on Twitter: @EPASoutheast