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Earth Day award winners feted

Butch and Myrna Ashby of South Kitsap were recognized with a Clean Water Partner award for their farming practices. - Aaron Burkhalter/Staff Photo
Butch and Myrna Ashby of South Kitsap were recognized with a Clean Water Partner award for their farming practices.
— image credit: Aaron Burkhalter/Staff Photo

Kitsap County presented its 2008 Earth Day awards, recognizing people throughout the community who have combined sustainability and imagination.

“Each year Kitsap County recognizes individuals, organizations and businesses for their notable contributions to the environment,” said Public Works Department spokesperson Vicki Bushnell. “We try to recognize them for their efforts, but also the opportunities they take to actively seek solutions and finding innovative ways to protect the environment.”

The awards were presented at Monday night’s meeting of the Kitsap County Commissioners.

Recipients for 2008 include:

• Outstanding Achievement in Sustainability: Grounds for Change, Kelly Marshall. This coffee roasting company in Poulsbo emphasizes that all decisions of the company are made with environmental and social implications in mind. That’s why they roast only shade-grown, Fair Trade organic coffee.

They use only 100 percent recycled content paper and recycle all materials — even the burlap bags which are sewn into reusable totes.

They also participate in Puget Sound Energy’s Green Power program to bring essential financing to wind farms and solar power projects — while offsetting their own carbon footprint.

• Outstanding Achievement in Environmental Education, Bill McKinney. An employee of the city of Bremerton’s Forestry Division. McKinney provides community outreach about watersheds, sustainable forestry practices and biosolids recycling.

In addition, he regularly provides information about watershed restoration and the salmon life cycle at Jarstad Park.

In 2001 he was instrumental in replacing a 750-foot concrete channel at Gorst Creek with a streambed that replicates a more natural system.

• Clean Kitsap Award: Greater Hansville Community Center Volunteers. Year-round, up to 20 people clean the roads of litter in the Hansville area. These are the Hansville Community Center Volunteers; a group of residents who joined the Adopt a Road program and regularly organize group clean-ups to keep Hansville looking clean and green.

• Green Building: Kitsap Community Resources. The new 29,000-square-foot building in downtown Bremerton serves as the new headquarters for the many services offered by KCR.

The consolidation of two previous facilities enables KCR to conserve energy, water and other resources.

• Green Building Education: Home Builders Association of Kitsap County. The group’s Low-Impact Development program is well known by now here in Kitsap County. The Home Builders Association not only developed a comprehensive educational campaign on stormwater management, but they also followed up by forming partnerships throughout the community to retrofit approximately 11,000 square feet of their own grounds, turning it into a demonstration project.

• Best Hazardous Waste Reduction Program: Sabelhaus West. This paint contractor has implemented a comprehensive environmental program.

Its employees are rewarded for their efforts with a hazardous waste reduction award. Additionally, they have a patented process to filter lead-based paint chips from water after power washing.

All thinners are re-used, and any leftover sludge is properly disposed. Outreach efforts include performing presentations to industry trade associations, which has resulted in more stores carrying low emitting paints.

• Environmental Adult Leadership: Olympic Printer Resources. Olympic Printer Resources started in a Kingston basement as a business that remanufactured used toner cartridges.

Since 1993, the company has grown to include selling or leasing remanufactured copiers and collecting electronic waste.

In 2007, they held collections in Poulsbo and Silverdale that resulted in responsible recycling of 70 tons of computer equipment and televisions.

• Environmental Youth Leadership: Bainbridge High School Youth Service Corps. In addition to recycling at their school, the youngsters worked with the city of Bainbridge to ensure recycling at community events, were involved in the recycling of 50 percent of the construction waste when their cafeteria was built, and convinced the school administration to convert to reusable lunch trays.

Their waste audit resulted in a grant from the Department of Ecology to purchase a 10-foot compost tub, which will help them raise money to fund other projects.

• Waste Wi$e Kitsap: Don Schultz, Road Superintendent. This year the Public Works Roads Department received recognition.

Roads continued to re-use asphalt and road sand onsite, saving more than $500,000 on disposal, transportation and avoided purchasing costs for new materials.

The county’s Surface and Stormwater Management Program also awarded its 2008 Clean Water Partner Awards, given to Kitsap citizens, community groups and businesses that have partnered with the county to improve local water quality.

The four agencies funded through the program each chose a recipient, including Express Car Wash (stormwater)‚?Butch and Myrna Ashby (agriculture), Friends of Wilson Creek Organizers (Stream Team) and Paula and Richard Chandler (septic system repair).

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