Images of Kitsap County
Public Communications (MS-11)
614 Division Street, Port Orchard, WA
Phone: 360.337.4598

Date: April 11, 2016
Contact: Toni Fuller, Programs Specialist, Education and Outreach
360.337.4472 or
No: 2016-035

Kitsap County announces Earth Day Award winners!

(Port Orchard, WA) – The annual Earth Day Awards presentation takes place at 5:30 pm on April 11, at the Board of County Commissioners regular televised meeting at the Kitsap County Administration Building in Port Orchard.

There will be a reception immediately following the presentation in the main lobby of the Administration Building. We invite the press to meet this year’s winners.

Solid Waste Division 2016 Earth Day Awards

The 2016 Solid Waste Division Earth Day Awards recognize individual citizens, organizations, schools, and businesses for their distinguishing environmental programs or projects. This year’s recipients exemplify environmental leadership qualities in programs or projects emphasizing sustainability, waste reduction, recycling, litter control, and hazardous waste management. These outstanding achievers make a difference with their choices and lead the way as they make others aware of environmental issues.

Waste Wise @ Work Business of the Year –
Christopher Plemmons, Chef Instructor Olympic College

The Waste Wise @ Work program is a voluntary technical assistance and recognition program for businesses with outstanding waste reduction and recycling practices.

In 2013, more than 37 million tons of food was wasted in America, with only 5 percent composted or incinerated for energy recovery. Food waste is the single largest component of common household trash, and in turn feeds our landfills. This school year the Chef Instructor at Olympic College took a stand against food waste and implemented pre-consumer food waste recycling in the culinary arts kitchen.

The staff and students are responsible for preparing food for the school cafeteria, restaurant, and culinary arts classes. Food waste recycling was integrated into the curriculum and multiple training sessions were held. In order to ensure a clean organics stream, education focused on learning about the types of materials accepted. Student chefs now have first hand experience with pre-consumer food waste recycling that they can utilize in their future careers.

“Implementing a new recycling program can be challenging”, said the Waste Wise @ Work Program Coordinator Eirik O’Neal, “however, Chef Plemmons and his team at Olympic College wholeheartedly embraced the idea of diverting organics from the landfill. From their kitchen alone, an estimated 800 pounds of pre-consumer food waste per month is now diverted to a local composting facility.”

Best Hazardous Waste Management Program: Jim Sund, North Kitsap Auto Rebuild, Inc.
Since 1996, Jim Sund has owned and operated North Kitsap Auto Rebuild. He developed this award winning business to meet the highest measures in both collision repair and environmental standards. North Kitsap Auto Rebuild has earned the highest level of EnviroStars certification. The auto body shop has exceeded industry standards by achieving “five-star” certification requirements for hazardous waste management and pollution prevention.

They implemented efficient hazardous waste recycling and disposal practices, maintaining a highly effective distillation process for solvent recovery. Distillation is a means to separate solvents and reduce chemical waste. The dirty solvent is reclaimed into clean solvent and is re-used. On a regular basis, the remaining waste is self-hauled by Jim himself from the North Kitsap shop to the Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility located in South Kitsap.

Since the selection of this award, Jim has sold the business and now spends his time serving on multiple boards, foundations, and committees; and tending his 8-acre mini farm in Poulsbo. Lisa Monroe, Local Source Control Program and Small Quantity Generator Program Coordinator, said, “It has been a pleasure working with Jim over the years. He has operated a model business in his field and been a leader in our community.”

Partner in Environmental Education: Bainbridge Island Boy Scout Troop 1564

Bainbridge Island Boy Scout Troop 1564 is a boy-run Troop. Boy leaders plan and execute their own program, with guidance and support from trained adult leaders, many of whom are Eagle Scouts.

For the past 20 years, Troop 1564 has recycled holiday trees on Bainbridge Island, each year striving to improve their service level over the last. Tree recycling is both a community service and a fundraising event for the troop. Residents are required to make reservations and a small donation is suggested for pick-up service.

David McVay, Committee Chair commented, “We pride ourselves in continuing a long tradition of service to our community and respect for nature." Despite the challenge of finding a disposal partner capable of chipping all these trees, Dave has persisted. Last year, the troop partnered with Bainbridge Island Parks & Recreation to chip the trees into mulch. They also received support from American Legion Colin Hyde Post 172, and Fairbank Construction loaned a truck.

By organizing a coordinated effort for 1,000 holiday trees picked-up annually, organic material is diverted from the landfill and mulch is given back to the community. The troop has set up a website to coordinate their tree recycling efforts and they even return numerous ornaments found hiding in the trees.

Adopt-A-Road Volunteer: Donna Martin
The Adopt-A-Road Program offers individuals, service groups, and other community groups – including local businesses – an opportunity to volunteer their time to help keep Kitsap County clean. Volunteers receive safety training, safety equipment, litterbags, and free disposal for roadside cleanup activities. Volunteers who meet the program’s annual cleanup commitment receive roadside recognition with an Adopt-A-Road sign.

Donna Martin joined the Adopt-A-Road program in 2006. She tirelessly removes litter on her frequent walks in her South Kitsap neighborhood. She chose to clean up two miles of roadway near her that are semi-rural and have had chronic litter and illegal dumping issues.
She has logged in 162 hours, removed 532 pounds of litter, and cleaned up 73 miles of roadway.

Kevin Bevelhimer, Adopt-A-Road Program Coordinator, said, “I believe she has been working diligently, removing litter and trash well before our program was established. These statistics in no way are meager, especially taken into account that most litter is made up of light weight material like plastic bottles and paper.” She has also assisted with the removal of over 1 ton of illegally dumped debris by identifying, reporting, and marking the material, making it easier for the crews to access.

Excellence in Waste Reduction and Recycling: Bainbridge Island Zero Waste
Bainbridge Island Zero Waste, an initiative of Sustainable Bainbridge since 2010, assists and applauds the efforts of local organizations to reduce landfill waste. Zero Waste members raise community awareness by promoting waste reduction, reuse, recycling, and composting.

With over 150 members, there are numerous volunteer opportunities. Some attend monthly meetings, others share information within their own networks, and many help at community events. At the Grand Old Fourth event, volunteers worked with vendors to make sure food packaging could be recycled or composted. Their public education about recycling and composting at resource recovery stations resulted in diverting 75% of event waste from the landfill.

Volunteers encouraged nonprofits to host low-waste events and implemented recycling and composting at various sites. By working with six major realty companies, they introduced recycling food and yard waste to new households. They are involved in special recycling collections, coordinating holiday lights recycling and hosting a Styrofoam recycling collection event.

While this award is to all Bainbridge Island Zero Waste volunteers, special acknowledgement goes to Diane Landry, long-time member and passionate waste reducer and recycler. She is quick to point out that many people devote many hours and emphasizes this is a team effort!

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Last Updated:  April 11, 2016