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April 21, 2010 > Local green leaders honored with 2010 Clean Air Awards

Local green leaders honored with 2010 Clean Air Awards

Submitted By Ralph Borrmann

With the 40th anniversary of Earth Day on April 22, Breathe California launched the world's annual green celebration by recognizing nine Bay Area businesses, organizations and individuals with its 2010 Annual Clean Air Awards on April 16.

"The innovative efforts of these individuals and organizations give me great hope for cleaner air and lung health in the future," said Rob Lawrence, Chair of the Board of Breathe California, Golden Gate Public Health Partnership. "Their extraordinary contributions help to combat climate change and improve air quality here at home and serve as a model for the rest of the country."

This year's awards honor the following:

Jack Broadbent & Kelly Wee, Bay Area Air Quality Management District (Applied Research)
For successfully implementing a Bay Area wood smoke rule using scientific data, dynamic public education and a progressive program of enforcement.

Kaiser Permanente (Leadership)
For its commitment to environmental sustainability through the promotion of healthy communities, green buildings and green buying practices in the Kaiser medical network, serving as a model nationally for the health care industry.

Altamont Landfill & Resource Recovery Facility (Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions)
For creating the world's largest landfill gas to liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant, producing almost 13,000 gallons of LNG per day, significantly reducing greenhouse gases emissions in its fleet of vehicles.

Solazyme (Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reductions)
For creating a natural algae production process on a commercial scale which results in high-value oil for use in fuels with significantly reduced greenhouse gas emissions when compared to conventional fuels.

Dr. Ware Kuschner (Medical Research)
For advancing the understanding of how respiratory toxins threaten cardio-pulmonary functioning and highlighting the public health hazards of indoor and outdoor pollution, including wood smoke.

Our City Forest (Public Awareness/Education)
For educating the San Jose community on the benefits of an urban forest and planting over 50,000 trees that reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases while promoting environmental stewardship.

Peninsula Traffic Congestion Alliance (Transportation)
For developing a comprehensive and synergistic transportation alternatives program in partnership with cities and employers in San Mateo County that led to a reduction of over 33 million vehicle miles traveled in a 12-month period.

CODA Automotive (Technology Development)
For developing an advanced automobile-grade battery technology for all-electric vehicles thereby reducing our dependence on foreign oil and leading to a cleaner environment.

First Community Housing (Green Buildings/Smart Growth)
For developing and renovating over 1,200 "green" multi-family housing units near transit hubs, thereby improving energy efficiency and indoor air quality while promoting public transit usage.


Air pollution and global warming present a significant danger to the environment and to public health. Exposure to high levels of air pollution is linked to the onset of asthma, the development of lung cancer and premature death. Short-term exposure can cause shortness of breath, trigger an asthma attack or cause serious complications for those with heart disease and/or diabetes. Global warming increases health risks due to higher levels of air pollution, extreme weather conditions (such as heat waves) and the spread of infectious diseases.

Breathe California is dedicated to fighting lung disease, advocating for clean air and advancing public health. For more than a century, the organization has addressed the most serious health threats through grassroots programs that empower individual, institutional and community change for better breathing and healthier living.

For more information about Breathe California, the Clean Air Awards or the award recipients, visit www.cleanairawards.org or call one of the organization's Bay Area affiliates at (650) 994-5868 or (408) 998-5865.

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