The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes federal facilities for conserving resources and saving taxpayers’ money as part of the Federal Green Challenge (FGC). These efforts across the federal government have not only resulted in approximately $22 million in cost savings in the last year, but also further the goals of a May 17, 2018 Executive Order (EO) Regarding Efficient Federal Operations.
In 2017, FGC participants reduced the federal government’s environmental impact by reducing fuel oil consumption by more than 206,000 gallons, sending nearly 300 tons of end-of-life electronics to third-party certified recyclers, using almost 59 million fewer gallons of industrial, landscaping and agricultural water, and diverting over 422,000 tons of waste from landfills. Participants also prevented more than 840 tons of food from being landfilled through food donation and composting efforts.
FGC participants are leading the way in advancing the goals of the President’s EO, which directs agencies to prioritize reducing waste, cutting costs, enhancing the resiliency of Federal infrastructure and operations, and that these reductions should be tracked to ensure accountability.
EPA has awarded the following participants for their efforts in improving the efficiency of their facilities in FY17:
FY17 Highest Percentage of Materials Managed:
- The General Services Administration’s Fort Worth Federal Center in Fort Worth, TX, managed its materials for a 97% diversion rate in FY17.
- The U.S. Department of Energy’s Bonneville Power Administration in Portland, OR, managed over 92% of the materials in its waste stream in FY17 (2,410 tons recycled, 28.8 tons composted, 202.7 tons landfilled).
Improvement by Target Area – Highest Increased Percentage Over Previous Year
- Waste: The Department of Transportation’s Volpe National Transportation Systems in Cambridge, MA, increased collection of compost from 0.2 tons to 4.4 tons, from FY16 to FY17.
- Electronics: The Veterans Administration’s Sam Rayburn Memorial Veterans Center in Bonham, TX, increased its purchasing of EPEAT registered electronics 542%, from 87 to 559.
- Purchasing: The Drug Enforcement Administration’s El Paso Intelligence Center in El Paso, TX, reduced paper purchased 53% from 4,500 pounds down to 2,099 pounds.
- Energy: The Department of Energy’s East Tennessee Technology Park in Oak Ridge, TN, increased their renewable energy purchased or installed on site by 648% from 19,968 kWh to 149,361 kWh.
- Water: The Drug Enforcement Administration’s Southeast Laboratory in Miami, FL, reduced potable water use to 69% from 950,710 gallons to 293,964 gallons.
- Transportation: The Veterans Administration’s Sam Rayburn Memorial Veterans Center in Bonham, TX, increased its number of hybrid vehicles by 260% from five to 18, and increased the number of alternative fuel vehicles by 84% from 91 to 167.
The FGC is a voluntary, fiscal yearlong commitment under EPA’s Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) Program, in which participants focus on efficiently managing their resources to reduce the costs of building operations, maintenance, and supplies. Read more about these National Winners as well as Regional Winners at www.epa.gov/fgc.