Monday, June 18, 2018

PEC Honors Cycling Advocate Robert Thomas, Philadelphia Water Commissioner Debra McCarty, Philadelphia Eagles Go Green Program

On June 14, the PA Environmental Council honored Cycling Advocate Robert Thomas, Philadelphia Water Commissioner Debra McCarty and the Philadelphia Eagles Go Green Program at their 48th annual Philadelphia Environmental Partnership Dinner.
Dinner attendees were also among the  first to get a glimpse of the Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Plan developed by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
Longtime Philadelphia cycling advocate Robert P. Thomas, AIA, received a standing ovation as he received the 2018 Curtin Winsor Award.
Named for PEC co-founder and former board member Curtin Winsor, the award recognizes a person who exemplifies his vision, commitment, and lifetime achievement.
Thomas is a founding member of the Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition, a leading advocate for the Circuit Trails and East Coast Greenway, and a champion for accessibility and historic preservation.
“It’s a heck of a lot of fun,” Thomas said of his decades of volunteer and professional work on sustainable development in Philadelphia. He donated his $1,000 cash award to the Philadelphia Bicycle Coalition.
Philadelphia Water Commissioner Debra McCarty received the Non-Profit/Government Innovation & Sustainability Award on behalf of the Philadelphia Water Department’s Green City, Clean Waters Initiative.
GCCW has been held up as a national model for sustainably managing stormwater runoff through the use of green infrastructure.
“Working with public and private partners, the City of Philadelphia has added over 2000 green features, including stormwater tree planters, rain barrels, porous paving, rain gardens, and green roofs to our neighborhoods to reduce runoff, volume, and filter pollutants,” McCarty said. “All of this helps protect our rivers and streams, making our city a better place to live, learn, work, and play.”
The Philadelphia Eagles Go Green Program was also honored.  The Eagles, who have  installed 14 wind turbines and more than 11,000 solar panels at Lincoln Financial Field as part of a broader effort to reduce energy usage and waste in partnership with dinner sponsor NRG Energy.
Eagles VP for Fan Experience Norman Vossschulte accepted the Industry Innovation/Corporate Sustainability Award before departing for a separate event where the NFL-champion Eagles were to receive their commemorative Super Bowl 2018 rings.
Delivering the keynote address was DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn who outlined the challenges the agency faces in managing the impacts of global warming on Pennsylvania’s public lands – including invasive species, changing forest composition, rising temperatures in lakes and streams, wildfires, and damage from more frequent and increasingly intense severe weather events.
“To not act on climate, in today’s world, would be criminal,” Dunn said. “We need to act, so we’re laying out a framework for our action.”
The plan identifies 123 action steps, beginning with a pilot project to test out adaptive management practices on state park and forest lands in south central Pennsylvania.
Click Here for a copy of the Plan.
The Philadelphia Environmental Partnership Dinner is one of three regional events hosted each year by PEC, recognizing environmental leadership in southeastern, northeastern, and western Pennsylvania.
With the state Department of Environmental Protection, PEC also co-hosts the Governor’s Awards for Environmental Excellence held each spring in Harrisburg.
For more information on programs, initiatives and special events, visit the PA Environmental Council website, visit the PEC Blog, follow PEC on Twitter or Like PEC on Facebook.  Visit PEC’s Audio Room for the latest podcasts.  Click Here to receive regular updates from PEC.
(Photo: Robert Thomas accepts Winsor Award from Patrick Starr, Executive Vice President of PEC.)
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