Thank you so much for your interest and participating in this year's Greenovate Awards! We had an overwhelming response in voting for the finalists. We're excited to announce this year's finalists- read more about them below. Make sure to RSVP to this year's Greenovate Awards Party on April 19th with Mayor Walsh where the winners will be announced. 

WASTE REDUCTION

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.

 

Boston Building Resources - Mission HillBoston_Building_Resources_Reuse_Center.png

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.


Bootstrap Compost - Jamaica Plain bootstrap_bucket.png

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.


CERO - Dorchester Cero.jpg

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.


COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

In order to reach Boston's climate action goals, every resident and business must help. Empowering residents and businesses to take climate action in their own neighborhoods, and empowering and educating youth are two priorities of the City of Boston.

The championing of climate action in partnership with our neighborhoods will enable the City to adopt smart policies and programs that prepare the City for climate change, and drive further GHG reductions over the long term.

 

Codman Square Library Seniors Organic Vegetable Garden - Dorchester codman_square_dream_team.jpg

Andrea Burns spearheaded an intergovernmental team --that included Patricia McCormack of the Elderly Commission, Friends of the Codman Square Library, Norfolk Hardware, Home Depot - South Bay, City Councilor Frank Baker, Jim Sheehan of the Boston Park Department, and City of Boston Dream Team-- and was able to build raised organic vegetable beds on land in back of the Codman Square Library for the seniors in the community with a zero dollar budget. In addition to working on the project itself, Andrea Burns fielded a team from Boston Center for Youth and Families, young people, Patricia and the Friends of the Codman Square Library. Through the salvage operation and construction, and the planting of the beds the project displayed an amazing collaboration between interdepartmental cooperation, neighborhood engagement, the support of Codman Square Librarian Janice Knight and the passion and commitment of Carl and Arnetta Baty and other members of the Friends of the Codman Square Library. The beds are still up and waiting for the Spring season to start!


Gas Leaks Allies - Citywide Gas_Leaks_Allies.jpg

The Gas Leaks Allies achieved real success in 2016 in our campaign to fix gas leaks by mounting a creative, sustained campaign pressing utilities to accelerate repairs.

The Problem. Boston’s underground gas pipes were laid in the 1800s and are among the oldest and leakiest in the US. The leaked gas is methane – 86x more potent than carbon dioxide in its first 20 years in the atmosphere. Not only is the gas a powerful climate-disrupter, it also kills trees, causes respiratory problems, and can explode. By the utilities’ own estimates, Boston had nearly 1,500 leaks in 2015.

Who We Are. In 2015, the Gas Leaks Allies coalition was launched – including representatives from Mothers Out Front (convener and chair), Clean Water Action, Sierra Club, BCAN, HEET, BU professor Nathan Phillips, Conservation Law Foundation, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, Friends of the Public Garden, Green Justice Coalition, Community Labor United and 10 other groups. The group has met every other week for two years to design and implement a focused gas leaks campaign, with each organization bringing complementary skills including community engagement know-how, legal and policy expertise, scientific knowledge, and connections with key constituencies like labor.

What We Did. We built community awareness in a variety of creative ways: in addition to offering gas leaks slideshow presentations and writing letters-to-the-editor, we held a birthday party for Boston’s oldest leak, invited people on gas leaks “safaris,” organized leak-tagging events that engaged hundreds of people (including youth), and coordinated a twitter-storm targeting the utilities for their inaction on high-volume “super-emitter” leaks. We also engaged politically. We met with 11 of Boston’s 13 City Councilors and with their help, drafted and shepherded a gas leaks ordinance through the council. At the two public hearings for the ordinance, we turned out over 100 supporters, and organized effective testimony. We also pressed for stronger state legislation on gas leaks, working with legislators and their staff and attending and testifying at public hearings organized by the Departments of Environmental Protection and Public Utilities.

Our Accomplishments. These efforts resulted in several key successes in 2016:

  • Passage of an energy omnibus bill including language requiring utilities to fix not only explosive leaks, but those that have a significant environmental impact. Governor Baker also issued an executive order on climate change that specifically included gas leaks.
  • Enactment of a new City of Boston gas leaks ordinance requiring expedited, better-coordinated and safer gas leaks repair.
  • Agreement by National Grid, Eversource, and Columbia Gas to work with us on a study of how best to identify super-emitters so that they can be targeted for repair. The study includes testing new technology to accurately measure methane emissions and sharing results nationally.

Boston Food Forest Coalition - Citywide Boston_Food_Forest_Coalition_(1).jpg

The Boston Food Forest Coalition (BFFC) creates edible food forest gardens. They bring together a wide diversity of neighbors through harvest festivals, potlucks, bbqs, workshops, and other community events. Volunteers work together on local stewardship teams, which ensures cultural preferences are honored. The BFFC, working in collaboration with Alternatives for Community and Environment and Greater Four Corners Action Coalition, brought neighbors together to clean-up and plant a food forest on a pair of neglected trash lots. To date, BFFC has helped with 125 garden raisings across the city - over 125 neighbors have joined hands to transform their unused yards into food forests.


BUILDINGS AND ENERGY

Energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives are critical to meeting Boston's GHG reduction goals. Whether it's a single-family home, a tripledecker, or a large building downtown -- every action matters. As residents and businesses continue to take advantage of incentives from our utility partners, voluntary commitments and leadership above and beyond will be what inspires others to take action and drive the greatest reductions.

 

Second Church in Dorchester - Dorchester Second_Church_Dorchester_(1).JPG

Members of Second Church in Dorchester and other community leaders launched Codman Square Goes Solar, an initiative focused on expanding access to solar to low-moderate income homeowners. As part of the 2016 Boston Interfaith Community Solar Project, Second Church in Dorchester recently installed a solar array on their historic church building. Through this program, anyone with a qualifying roof can participate as a solar host for no cost, and receive electricity savings. The coalition is seeking additional homeowners and property owners to sign-up to host solar through the Codman Square Goes Solar initiative and or participate in the Community Solar initiative where additional panels can be added to the church roof for the benefit of the community.


Boston Public Library - Citywide BPL_(1).jpg

Recent capital improvements to three of library’s iconic buildings have yielded nearly $50,000 in annual utility savings for the lifetime of the installed improvements. The improvements will also eliminate over 140 tons of greenhouse gas emissions each year, which is equivalent to removing more than 40 cars from the road for a year.


The Gas Leaks Allies - Citywide Gas_Leaks_Allies.jpg

The Gas Leaks Allies achieved real success in 2016 in our campaign to fix gas leaks by mounting a creative, sustained campaign pressing utilities to accelerate repairs.

The Problem. Boston’s underground gas pipes were laid in the 1800s and are among the oldest and leakiest in the US. The leaked gas is methane – 86x more potent than carbon dioxide in its first 20 years in the atmosphere. Not only is the gas a powerful climate-disrupter, it also kills trees, causes respiratory problems, and can explode. By the utilities’ own estimates, Boston had nearly 1,500 leaks in 2015.

Who We Are. In 2015, the Gas Leaks Allies coalition was launched – including representatives from Mothers Out Front (convener and chair), Clean Water Action, Sierra Club, BCAN, HEET, BU professor Nathan Phillips, Conservation Law Foundation, Emerald Necklace Conservancy, Friends of the Public Garden, Green Justice Coalition, Community Labor United and 10 other groups. The group has met every other week for two years to design and implement a focused gas leaks campaign, with each organization bringing complementary skills including community engagement know-how, legal and policy expertise, scientific knowledge, and connections with key constituencies like labor.

What We Did. We built community awareness in a variety of creative ways: in addition to offering gas leaks slideshow presentations and writing letters-to-the-editor, we held a birthday party for Boston’s oldest leak, invited people on gas leaks “safaris,” organized leak-tagging events that engaged hundreds of people (including youth), and coordinated a twitter-storm targeting the utilities for their inaction on high-volume “super-emitter” leaks. We also engaged politically. We met with 11 of Boston’s 13 City Councilors and with their help, drafted and shepherded a gas leaks ordinance through the council. At the two public hearings for the ordinance, we turned out over 100 supporters, and organized effective testimony. We also pressed for stronger state legislation on gas leaks, working with legislators and their staff and attending and testifying at public hearings organized by the Departments of Environmental Protection and Public Utilities.

Our Accomplishments. These efforts resulted in several key successes in 2016:

  • Passage of an energy omnibus bill including language requiring utilities to fix not only explosive leaks, but those that have a significant environmental impact. Governor Baker also issued an executive order on climate change that specifically included gas leaks.
  • Enactment of a new City of Boston gas leaks ordinance requiring expedited, better-coordinated and safer gas leaks repair.
  • Agreement by National Grid, Eversource, and Columbia Gas to work with us on a study of how best to identify super-emitters so that they can be targeted for repair. The study includes testing new technology to accurately measure methane emissions and sharing results nationally.

SUSTAINABLE FOOD

Access to healthy, local food is a clear community priority for Bostonians. Urban farming, local farmer's markets, community garden plots are all starting to shape the rich culture of local food in our City and will help support a local food system that will make Boston more resilient in a changing climate.

 

The Daily Table - Dorchester Daily_Table.png

As a new business startup in Dorchester, Doug Rauch and Daily Table are pioneering efforts to provide healthy, fresh, local, affordable food to people who might not otherwise have access to it. In pursuing its mission, Daily Table is also significantly reducing the amount of food waste in Boston's food system, thereby increasing the resiliency and carbon integrity of the food system. Learn more about The Daily Table.


Fresh Truck - Dorchester Fresh_Truck.png

Fresh Truck operates two renovated school buses as mobile food markets, stocked with fresh fruit, vegetables, and healthy snacks. They partner with health centers and other community organizations to combine their services with access to affordable, healthy food.

Fresh Truck programs celebrate healthy neighborhood food culture while providing access to fresh food for families that need it the most. Learn more about Fresh Truck.


Urban Farming Institute - Roxbury UFI.jpg

UFI supports urban farms, farmer training and an annual conference that attracts 400+ people who are engaged in urban farms. Each year, UFI trains 10 - 20 new farmers, supports 4 farms in low-income neighborhoods, and is building out the historic Fowler Clarke Farm in Mattapan with Historic Boston as a center for fresh food access and education. UFI is creating a land trust, and regularly engages hundreds of residents in farmers markets and training to access healthy food. Learn more about Urban Farming Institute here:  http://www.urbanfarminginstitute.org.


TREES, OPEN SPACE, AND LANDSCAPING

Trees and open space clean Boston's air, reduce the heat island effect, absorb flood waters, and improve the overall wellness of city dwellers. Maintaining our historic park system requires the public and private collaboration, and further development of green spaces will be critical in new phases of development.

 

Arnetta and Carl Baty - Dorchester Batty.JPG

Carl and Arnetta Baty, on behalf of the Friends of the Codman Square Library, spearheaded an initiative to green the space around the Codman Square Public Library. They built several large raised bed planters for native vegetation to positively affect air quality and brighten the neighborhood in an area previously bare and under-utilized. This was a largely senior citizen- led initiative that promoted physical activity, community building, and essential outdoor time.


Boston Food Forest Coalition - Mattapan Boston_Food_Forest_Coalition_(1).jpg

The Boston Food Forest Coalition (BFFC) creates edible “forest garden” landscapes with community participation. BFFC currently has 7 food forest sites across Boston neighborhoods, with its 1-acre flagship educational site at Mattapan's Boston Nature Center. Their flagship site has over 50 different edible trees and shrubs, including “restoration Chestnuts” bred and donated by the American Chestnut Foundation. Site visitors are able to discover new edible varieties they may have never heard of, such as paw paw and shagbark hickories.

BFFC also offers workshops that help children and adults connect with nature. In 2016, BFFC organized 40 educational workshops including: tree planting, mushroom log building, medicinal herb planting, edible landscaping, healing contaminated soil, low-maintenance gardening techniques, cover cropping, food forest design, and many other subjects. Workshop attendees leave having learned the importance of biodiversity and thoughtful landscaping. Many workshops and festivals are also held in the food forest open spaces, open to the whole community. BFFC is also committed to training teen-youth leaders at Mattapan’s Boston Nature Center, so they can lead the way in edible landscaping and preservation of biodiversity.


Pam Sinotte - Roslindale Pam_Sinotte_(1).jpg

In May 2016, Pam and GreeningRozzie launched The Memory Tree Project. Volunteers are matched with City street trees to care after and water, helping ensure that they reach maturity while also publicly honoring a loved ones by displaying an Memory Tree sign. Thanks to the more than twenty volunteers in 2016, a number of trees that might have succumbed to the severe drought have a good chance of surviving to maturity, helping to reduce the impact of climate change, and beautify the Roslindale community.

As volunteers John and Dorothy (right) have stated: “win/win all around”! The Project is ongoing and the hope is that it will expand to other Boston communities.

Pam has also coordinated volunteers to water 14 trees, planted by GreeningRozzie with a grant from Grow Boston Greener, at the Roslindale MBTA Station.


SUSTAINABLE MOBILITY

Boston and its community continues to rise to the challenge of balancing our historic landscape with the need to adapt and evolve to our changing mobility needs. Public transportation, walking, biking, carpooling, car-sharing, and ride-sharing are all pieces of the puzzle that will help Boston meet its climate and sustainability goals.

 

A Better City TMA - Citywide ABC_TMA.png

A Better City TMA works with developers, property managers, and employers all over Boston to decrease the number of commuters in the Boston region who drive alone. They do this by offering commuter programs to member tenants and employees that reward people for taking a sustainable commute mode and incentivize them to try an alternative mode of transit with financial assistance and support. In addition to the commuter programs, A Better City TMA is always looking for ways to further encourage people to commute sustainably. They are currently in the midst of a bike reimbursement pilot program that reimburses people for bike expenses such as a new bike, bike maintenance or safety gear. A Better City TMA is always looking for ways to engage their members to build a community around modes other than drive alone commuting. By getting people to leave their car at home even a few more times each month, they are helping to improve congestion challenges in the city, and reducing the pollution in our atmosphere. Learn more about the A Better City TMA program.

A Better City was awarded a 'Green Business' Greenovate Award in 2011.


Geekhouse Bikes - Charlestown Geekhouse_Bikes.png

Geekhouse specializes in building custom fit premium bicycles in Charlestown. Established in 2002 by Marty Walsh, Geekhouse is rooted in the world-renowned community of New England frame builders. Marty has been working in the bicycle industry the majority of his adult life, starting in retail and progressing up the line to owning his own custom shop. Known throughout the bike industry for its bright colors and irreverent humor, Geekhouse stands as an approachable fun company that embodies the phrase, ‘self-deprecating perfectionists’. They have been building bicycles within the city for years now, and have helped build a culture to support sustainable travel in Boston and beyond. Learn more about Geekhouse Bikes.


Green Streets Initiative - Citywide Greenstreets_initiative.png

Green Streets Initiative (GSI) was founded in 2006 to cultivate the car-light movement. For civic and business leaders committed to sustainability, GSI is the volunteer organization that celebrates car-light transportation with concrete, inclusive, and engaging programs which inspire healthy lifestyles and thriving communities.

Our signature event, Walk/Ride Days, is a monthly day of awareness about healthy and environmentally friendly commuting opportunities. Walk/Ride Days take place the last Friday of the month, year round. They encourage individuals, schools, workplaces and communities to meet their transportation needs using healthy and environmentally friendly modes, such as walking, bicycling, or using mass transit.

Since 2012, GSI has conducted an innovative cross-industry competition for workplaces who want to promote sustainability and health, called the Walk/Ride Day Corporate Challenge. The Challenge competition helps companies meet their sustainability goals, energize employees, and build team spirit. Over 60 companies have taken part, including Dana Farber Cancer Institute, City of Cambridge, and State Street Corporation. By combining specific and easily achieved goals, gentle peer pressure, and a sense of competition and fun, Walk/Ride Days give people positive experiences that lead to immediate and long-term behavior changes. For more information, visit www.GoGreenStreets.org


CLIMATE PREPAREDNESS AND RESILIENCY

Although climate change will inevitably shape our city in big ways, our response can make sure it is for the better. We can do that by using climate preparedness and resiliency measures to spur economic development, create jobs, invest in public green space, and improve our air and water quality.

 

The Trust for Public Land - Downtown Trust_for_Public_Land.jpg

Through partnerships with the City of Boston and the Metro Mayors Coalition, the Trust for Public Land is demonstrating how parks and open space can prepare Boston for a growing population as well as a warmer, wetter, low-carbon future. By planning, funding, protecting, and creating new parks and open spaces that benefit vulnerable populations, The Trust for Public Land is cooling heat islands with new trees, connecting neighborhoods with improved pedestrian corridors, absorbing stormwater with urban farms, and protecting neighborhoods from coastal flooding by promoting new funding sources for coastal resilience. Learn more about the Trust for Public Land’s Climate Smart Boston program today.


ACE Action Fellowship - Citywide ACE.png

The Alliance for Climate Education’s (ACE) Action Fellowship program empowers high school students from Greater Boston to increase public support for climate action and hold elected officials accountable on climate science and the need for just solutions to the climate crisis. The 2016-2017 ACE Action Fellows have shown immense leadership in pushing for a climate future that is equitable, just and stable.  Their campaign seeks to make the City of Boston more prepared and climate resilient by educating and activating Boston’s youth residents on this critical issue and by calling for systemic change that is commensurate with what the realities of science and principles of justice demand.


Reverend Mariama White-Hammond - Citywide Rev._Mariama_White-Hammond.jpg

Rev. Mariama White-Hammond has been a lifelong leader in Boston, passionate about utilizing her own experiences and organizational skills to work across Boston communities in the fight against climate change. She serves the Boston community as a board member of FOCUS Inc., and UP Academy in South Boston and Dorchester, and also holds advisory roles at ArtsEmerson, Green the Church and Right to the City VOTE Boston. Rev. Mariama White-Hammond shares her powerful voice and resiliency to continue to make positive impacts in the Boston community.


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