Hawaii News — 2013 Keeping It Green Hawai`i Award Recipients Announced

SPACE zero waste station

Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education (S.P.A.C.E.) display (courtesy of Recycle Hawaii)

(Media release) — Recycle Hawai`i and Earth-Friendly Schools Hawai`i announce the recipients of the 2013 Keeping It Green Hawai`i (KIGH) awards. The KIGH program highlights projects and activities by organizations, businesses, schools and government agencies that promote recycling, resource awareness and sustainable practices in Hawai`i. The program recognizes the positive “green projects” that are being implemented in our community, thereby encouraging others to create projects that care for our environment and take action to address local and global issues.

To be considered for a Keeping It Green Hawai`i award, nominees must meet at least three criteria established by Recycle Hawaii.  Criteria include practicing the 3 R’s: reduce, reuse, recycle; protecting natural resources and native species; alternative energy and green building practices; respect for native Hawaiian gathering rights and cultural practices.

Awardees for 2013 KIGH are The Green House Center for Sustainability and Going Green Recycling Community Clean-Up Program on Oahu, plus Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education (S.P.A.C.E.) and Hualalai Academy on Hawaii island.

The Green House (TGH) Center for Sustainability educates children, adults, families, and communities in adopting living practices that build on traditional knowledge with respect for the `aina.  In 2009, TGH collaborated with the Institute for Human Services (IHS) to create training programs to prepare a workforce for “green” jobs. Green Basic Training (GBT) is an introductory organic gardening program, while Green Sleeves Training (GST) is an advanced organic farm and plant production program. These programs provide hands-on experience plus job-ready skills for prevocational and vocational needs of persons experiencing homelessness, and empowers participants to be self-supporting by advancing their employment skills while helping to feed shelter residents.

Going Green Recycling Community Clean-Up Program is a monthly one-stop drop off event held on Oahu and Maui usually on Saturdays at schools, churches, community organizations or government agencies. Private businesses as well as federal, state, and county agencies donate resources for collection of recycling materials. Everything collected is recycled or reused and not going into the landfill.  The host organization receives cash for certain items like scrap metal, cell phones, printer ink cartridges, lap top computers, used cooking oil, lead acid batteries, shredding of confidential document, and HI-5 containers.  This program also supports youth service learning projects designed to protect our natural resources while practicing the 3 R’s: reduce, reuse, recycle.

Seaview Performing Arts Center for Education (S.P.A.C.E.) is a multi-purpose facility used as a school, farmers market, performance arts education center and community meeting place.  Owned and operated by Hawaii’s Volcano Circus (HVC), a non-profit organization, SPACE was built using ohia and mango wood harvested from their own land in Puna district.  Windows, doors, flooring and other materials were recycled or repurposed from other building projects. SPACE uses a solar power grid tie electrical system and has a 22,000 gallon water catchment system.  Natural lighting and ventilation eliminates the need for any daytime lighting or air conditioning.  Restrooms use sanitary reusable cloth towels rather than disposable paper towels, and bathroom tissue made from recycled paper.

Hualalai Academy empowers students grade K to 8 through an integrated curriculum and experiential learning to develop academic, artistic, social, and physical skills. In an effort to improve environmentally sustainable practices on campus students formed the C.R.E.W. (Clean, Renewable Elimination of Waste) Committee.  They determined that 61% of their trash could be reused, recycled, or composted.  With financial support from the William H. Hurt Foundation, they purchased recycling bins, recycling stations, and compost bins to place around campus. Students grades K to 5 served as recycling and compost monitors to collect and sort recyclable materials from every office and classroom on campus.  Within two months, a follow-up waste stream analysis found that 35% of the trash could be reused, recycled, or composted. Significantly, paper went from 20% down to 2%. C.R.E.W. aims to divert 100% of recyclable, reusable, and compostable materials from the waste stream, as well as to reduce their overall landfill waste by 20%.

For more information on Keeping It Green Hawai`i, go to www.recyclehawaii.org or call 808.969.2012

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