START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

Green Civic Leaders Changing Local Communities

Green Civic Leaders Changing Local Communities

Editor’s Note: This week we’ll be featuring stories of people working to make a difference either at home, working with students, in the community, or working within local governments. The Green Awards were sponsored by Green Giant and the winner received $25,000 to continue and expand their work. The runner-up finalists each received a $2,500 prize. The project was supported by Green Giant and 19 environmental organizations, including Bioneers, the Rainforest Alliance and the Nature Conservancy. For more information on these and other Green Awards finalists and winners, please visit

In today’s tough economic times, local governments are faced with difficult decisions and many are needing to cut basic services. Special programs, including those to help with the environment, are seen as extravagant. The Green Civic Leader award was designed for an elected official or civil employee that is making a positive impact on the environment.

Treating wastewater in most communities is an expensive and energy-consuming process. In Santa Rosa, they are working to reduce the costs and amount of energy used and also increase biogas production at the same time. As Caden Hare describes The F.A.B. Project, “We use sunlight and aquatic plants to remove nitrogen and pharmaceuticals from wastewater.  Next, we harvest the plants, add local organic waste  and make biogas for electricity. We then use the leftover waste as a fertilizer to grow healthier strawberries.” Additionally, they plan on using the money from winning the Green Awards to continue research in three other projects —  developing new sources of biogas, scaling up their wastewater scrubber, and using other waste products to remove phosphorus from the wastewater.

The first finalist is R.T. Rybak, mayor of Minneapolis, Minnesota who is working to expand the bike share program Nice Ride Minnesota. The program is a non-profit business and is looking to expand to 700 bikes with 73 stations. They already offer discounts to low income residents. Bike sharing has proven to be popular in several major cities around the world and Minneapolis is hoping to continue to that trend.

The second finalist in the Green Civic Award project is another mayor. Bruce Carlos Delgado of Marina, California wants to preserve the wilderness beauty of a stretch of land that previously belonged to the U.S. Army as Fort Ord. The land was turned over to the City of Marina, and they would like to plant native vegetation including live oak, Monterey cypress and lupine to ensure that its natural beauty will exist for generations.


Read more: , ,

have you shared this story yet?

some of the best people we know are doing it


+ add your own
12:13PM PDT on Jun 25, 2011

I hate this new petition-signing system. Why can't we just go back to the old one?! :-(

4:54AM PDT on Jun 25, 2011

Thanks for the article.

11:35AM PDT on Jun 24, 2011

Greatt projects!!!

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

Care2 - Be Extraordinary - Start a Care2 Petition
ads keep care2 free

Recent Comments from Causes

There are many unsung heroes and I am glad to see this man get the attention. He is a role model that…

I signed Naomi's petition too. Hopefully it will make a difference. It seems when there is money at stake,…

meet our writers

Lindsay Spangler Lindsay Spangler is a Web Editor and Producer for Care2 Causes. A recent UCLA graduate, she lives in... more
ads keep care2 free

Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!