The U.S. EPA announced the 2019 winners of the National WasteWise Awards this month. The City of Chesapeake Garage, in Chesapeake, Virginia, was recognized as Local Government Partner of the Year. In 2018, EPA’s WasteWise partners, including recent award winners, collectively reported preventing and diverting more than 1.9 million tons of municipal solid waste that would otherwise be disposed in landfills or incinerated, saving close to $100 million dollars in landfill tipping fees.

The City of Chesapeake’s Central Fleet Management Department is setting an example for practicing environmental stewardship in a city. They carefully track waste oil, antifreeze, used oil/fuel filters, tires, solvents, aerosol cans, scrapped metal, recycled paper and cardboard.

In 2018, Chesapeake Garage placed additional emphasis and training on environmental stewardship. These efforts increased participation by the workforce in recycling, resulting in saving 113,800 pounds of paper/cardboard and 106,436 pounds of scrapped metal and saving $9,000 in revenue. “As we continue to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, it is fitting to highlight these WasteWise partners for their dedication to waste reduction, environmental stewardship and sustainable materials management,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “These efforts not only provide environmental and cost savings benefits, but they also increase the efficiency of these businesses and organizations, positioning them for greater success.”

EPA’s WasteWise program encourages organizations and businesses to achieve sustainability in their practices and reduce select industrial wastes. Participants in the program work to prevent and divert waste that would otherwise be disposed of in landfills or incinerated. “WasteWise winners demonstrate outstanding leadership in sustainability, waste reduction, diversion and environmental stewardship,” said EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Cosmo Servidio. “Sustainability-focused organizations like the Chesapeake Garage increase awareness and knowledge about reducing waste and provide examples and inspiration for other organizations to take responsible actions toward a sustainable future.”

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