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†www.thegreenawards.com.
Green entrepreneurs around the world are working to change business and make a difference in their local communities. The winner and two finalists in the¬†Green Entrepreneur category are three examples on what can be done when inventors and business owners focus on making a positive impact on the environment.
Will Allen and The Good Food Revolution are working to do two things – bring farm-fresh food to inner-city communities and teach others in his community, especially teens and African American men, ways to farm using renewable energy and renewable resources. ¬†He currently trains over 1,000 farmers each year and takes to market over 150 vegetables to nearly 10,000 customers. ¬†Allen plans on using the money from the Green Awards to work with more youth and provide more food to the community.
Matt Zanetti created Tree Trunks last year in the Minneapolis, Minnesota area to provide sturdy, reusable plastic crates as “A New Way to Move”. Cardboard used as moving boxes frequently winds up in landfills and the plastic crates eliminate the extra waste. Zanetti tries to make the service as convenient as possible by dropping off and picking up the crates.
The second finalist in the Green Entrepreneur category is Andrew House of power-inverted. Access to sustainable energy sources is often not available to low-income families — either due to lack of home ownership or extremely high upfront costs. House’s team in Bethesda, Maryland allows low-income households to invest in sustainable energy by paying for solar panels on a solar farm, which also helps bring down their energy costs.