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EPA is Accepting Nominations for 2017 Environmental Merit Awards

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EPA Public Affairs

BOSTON - The U.S. EPA is now accepting nominations for the 2017 Environmental Merit Awards. Most of the awards will recognize environmental achievements during the past year. Award categories are available for individuals, businesses, governmental entities, and other organizations. Awards are also given under a lifetime achievement category.

These regional awards have been given out annually since EPA was created in 1970. Past recipients have included scientists, community activists, business representatives, public officials and other individuals committed to preserving the environment. An independent EPA panel will select the winners based on the following criteria: definition of the specific environmental problem or need; actions taken to address the environmental problem or need; measurable, sustainable and lasting public health or environmental results; connections to EPA’s mission to protect human health and the environment (i.e waste reduction or reduction in air, water, land pollution); ability of the program/activity to be replicated or widely shared; and promotion of innovative ideas or approaches.

Awards are traditionally given in four categories: individual; business, industry, trade, and professional organization; local, state or federal government; and environmental, community or non-profit organization. The Lifetime Award category is given to an individual(s) who have demonstrated a sustained commitment toward improving New England’s environment during a career or over a lifetime.

For the second year in a row EPA will also be awarding the Children's Environmental Health Award for an Individual or group that has made significant progress, contribution, leadership toward protecting children from environmental health risks in schools, homes, and childcare environments in New England.

A final award category is the Ira Leighton "In Service to States" Environmental Merit Award. This award recognizes an individual or organization that has made significant strides in facilitating state and federal partnerships through innovative sustainable solutions addressing critical environmental challenges in New England. The successful candidate will have actively demonstrated conviction and leadership in protecting the environment and in promoting sustainable practices, and will be determined by a collaboration among the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission (NEIWPCC), the Northeast States for Coordinated Air Use Management (NESCAUM), the Northeast Waste Management Officials' Association (NEWMOA), in coordination with the New England state Environmental Commissioners.

The deadline for nominations is February 10, 2017. Awards winners will be invited to a ceremony in May in Boston. Nominations are only accepted online.

More information on Award categories, evaluation criteria and how to submit nominations (

Contact Kristen Conroy at with comments or questions.