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Celebrating Sustainable Commuting Champions

November 27 2019

CommuteSMARTseacoast celebrated the efforts of twenty-four employers for their effort in promoting carpooling, transit, walking, bicycling, and teleworking at a recent Sustainability Awards Celebration at the Portsmouth Brewery.  Companies applied for bronze, silver, or gold achievement levels based on performance in fourteen sustainable transportation activities such as giving sustainable transportation information to new hires,  offering preferred parking to carpoolers, providing bike sharing for employees, and participating in the region’s commuter challenges.

Two employers received Gold Level: the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Harbour Light Strategic Marketing.  Silver Level recipients included: Colonial Bicycle, Exeter Cycles, GPI, Global Aquaculture, Heinemann Publishing, HubSpot, IAPP, Lonza, Mad*Pow, McLane Middleton, NH Dept. of Environmental Services,  Oak Point Associates, Portsmouth High School, Portsmouth Planning Dept., Seacoast Science Center, Strafford Regional Planning Commission, Terracon, and VF Global Innovations. .  Bronze Level awardees included: COAST, Pease Development Authority, Portsmouth Dept. of Public Works, and Vital.

The colorful awards included an image of Dr. Seuss’s Lorax, the mythical figure famous for his quote, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better.  It’s not.”  As Anne Rugg, Manager of CommuteSMART, commented, “These companies and their internal champions really care.  It’s important to recognize their leadership in implementing practices that will lower greenhouse gas emissions, decrease their employees’ commuting expenses, and promote a healthy lifestyle.”

Captain Samuel Cordero, acting Shipyard Commander, commented, “Portsmouth Naval Shipyard is excited to once again be recognized as a Gold recipient of this prestigious award.  With a growing workforce, it is important that we explore and encourage every opportunity to efficiently commute to and from work.”

The awards celebration included a presentation by Greg Norris PhD, internationally acclaimed Life Cycle Analysis scientist from MIT and Harvard.  Dr. Norris talked about “handprinting” – a way to effect positive change for the planet by sharing one’s individual sustainable actions with other people who in turn influence more people and so on ad infinitum.