The 2017 Mayor's Greenovate Awards - Waste Reduction Nominees
Learn more about the businesses, organizations, and individuals nominated for the 2017 Mayor's Greenovate Award nominees in the Waste Reduction category.
The City of Boston is committed to reducing waste by increasing recycling and reuse, and diverting organics. By keeping these valuables out of Boston's waste stream, we can collectively save money, create local jobs, and improve the environment. The City also welcomes innovative strategies to stop waste before it starts; that can include reducing consumption, comprehensive waste education, or new technologies to replace wasteful processes.
You can vote for your favorite Greenovate Award nominees now through April 7th. Votes will determine the top 3 finalists, and the winner will be announced live at Greenovate’s Earth Day Party on April 19th -- be sure to save the date and stay tuned for more details! Vote for Greenovate Award winners
Intercontinental Boston Hotel - Downtown
The InterContinental Boston hotel has several waste reduction efforts. In 2015, they started composting and have since collected over 650 tons of organic waste. The hotel hosts an in-house centralized pulper connected to all kitchens that grinds and compresses organic matter (food scraps, paper napkins, etc.) and extracts moisture to produce a dry, organic pulp that can be easily disposed. Recycling bins are available in all office areas and on all guestroom floors, and are made available in the meetings spaces for meetings.
The hotel also collects and donates a variety of materials, include used vegetable oil; clean, damaged bed linens, towels, pillows, and toilet paper; unclaimed lost and found clothing items, unclaimed cell phones; batteries from cell phones, remote controls, alarm clocks and guest room doors; ink and toner cartridges; and partially used soap and amenity bottles.
Boston Building Resources - Mission Hill
Boston Building Resources is a social enterprise in Mission Hill that provides affordable materials, both new and used, for home maintenance and improvements. In addition to buying good-quality used materials that would otherwise have been sent to a landfill, customers can also find expert advice, technical assistance, and hands-on workshops that teach home improvement skills. They have memberships available for low-income residents, and the organization as a whole is a source for energy-efficient, water-saving, and environmentally friendly items such as rain barrels, home compost bins, weather stripping, and materials made from recycled components.
In 2016, the Reuse Center at BBR took in donations of used materials with a fair market value of more than $2 million.
Boston Building Resources was awarded a ‘Green Business’ Greenovate Award in 2008.
Greg Rooney - Downtown
As the Director of Parking Enforcement for BTD, Greg Rooney implemented a comprehensive recycling program at the City of Boston's 200 Frontage Road office, and is now supporting improvements to recycling in City Hall in his role as Commissioner of Property Management and Construction Management. At just the Frontage Road office, it is conservatively estimated that 11,000 pounds of materials are recycled annually because of his initiative. His leadership to reduce waste in City of Boston offices demonstrates his commitment and understanding of the multiple benefits of engaging with City employees to reduce waste. He led the program by supporting and appointing employees to change the culture in order to waste less and recycle more.
The Furniture Trust - Downtown
The Furniture Trust's mission includes providing companies with environmentally responsible solutions for their excess office furniture and supplies. When businesses large and small are embarking on a move or remodel and they have office furniture and supplies they no longer need, The Furniture Trust provides them with an alternative to dumpsters. The Furniture Trust matches these unwanted resources with local schools, nonprofits and municipal departments who can use them. Organizations are able to get desks, tables, chairs, storage, workstations and lobby furniture for free, allowing them to put more money towards their mission. Recipients are often able to get better quality furniture than they would be able to purchase. Furniture that does not meet our standards is recycled. Since 2008, The Furniture Trust has donated $11 million worth of furniture and supplies, and diverted hundreds of tons from the waste stream. Much of the waste comes from Boston based businesses, and is donated back into the community including the Boston Public School, Boston Police Department and the Boston Fire Department, as well as many Boston-based nonprofits. Learn more about The Furniture Trust.
Bootstrap Compost - Jamaica Plain
Bootstrap Compost is a business that helps people reduce their waste. They pick up food waste and compostable materials from homes, restaurants and businesses. What makes them different is that they close the loop and provide finished compost material back to its customers – as well as closing the education loop about throwing things “away”. Bootstrap Compost also donates to schools and community gardening projects, and they raise awareness about food systems, sustainability and nutrition. Learn more about Bootstrap Compost.
Sierra Rothberg - Dorchester
Sierra Rothberg of Dorchester has led a grassroots movement to bring together different groups of people to reduce plastic bag litter throughout Boston. She started a Facebook group called Clean Up Boston, which has almost 700 members that shares citywide resources and ideas banning plastic bags, clean ups, and strategies for a cleaner city. She captains clean-ups along the Neponset River in coordination with the Neponset Watershed Association, organizes neighborhood and school clean ups, and brings awareness to the plastic bag issue in Boston. She has led and encouraged the Girl Scouts troop she co-leads to learn and speak up about environmental issues related to plastic bag usage and littering in Boston’s neighborhoods. She orchestrates reusable and socially responsible events, and is in the early stages of starting a bag share in Boston through Boomerang Bags.
Boston Public Works Department, Project Oscar team Danny Nee and Gilbert Costen - Citywide
Daniel Nee and Gilbert Costen operate Project Oscar, the City of Boston's community composting program. Their dedication to this pilot makes the well-loved community composting service available to residents through rain, snow, and heat.
CERO - Dorchester
CERO Cooperative is a worker-owner waste commercial composting company based out of Dorchester. They provide food waste pickup and diversion services for a range of commercial clients in the metro Boston area, and transport compostables to local farms where they are returned to the soil and used to support the local agricultural economy. CERO is comprised of a dedicated, bilingual team of worker-owners connected with Boston's working class and communities of color, committed to promoting green jobs and environmental justice. Learn more about CERO.
CERO was awarded a ‘Green Business’ Greenovate Award in 2014.
JP Shines - Jamaica Plain
This past year, JP Shines spearheaded a cigarette recycling initiative in Jamaica Plain. The all volunteer group, funded by local businesses, installed and maintain cigarette collection receptacles. Thirty-three (33) receptacles have been installed along the Centre-South Street area of Jamaica Plain, and there are numerous businesses in Hyde Square and other areas who have reached out to have them installed along their corridor as well. The receptacle company "Sidewalk Buttler" partnered with JP Shines to also bring tracking capabilities to JP's cigarette recycling -- a custom Android application communicates with an embedded RFID chip to track cigarette butt totals when each unit is serviced. Partnering with Sidewalk Buttler was the outgrowth of JP Shines' participation in the Clean Boston Task Force, which meets to discuss best practices to promote cleanliness in the city. Learn more about this project from JP Shines.