AQMD LogoSouth Coast Air Quality Management District
Español  |  中文 |  한국어
Bookmark and Share
Air Quality Forecast/Advisories
Current Hourly Air Quality Daily Forecasts & Advisories

Get Health Effects Info





AQMD to Honor Clean Air Heroes at Annual Clean Air Awards Luncheon

Oct 12, 2012

The South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) today will host its 24th Annual Clean Air Awards, honoring individuals and businesses, public agencies and others for making significant contributions to cleaner air in the Southland.
The luncheon is being held at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in downtown Los Angeles. Josh Rubenstein, chief meteorologist for CBS 2 and KCAL 9 TV, will emcee the event. 

“We have the privilege each year to honor exceptional individuals and businesses whose environmental efforts shine bright,” said AQMD Governing Board Chairman William A. Burke, Ed.D.  “The winners are inspiring and show each of us that we can make a positive difference for our environment.”

AQMD’s 2012 Clean Air Award winners are:

Robert M. Zweig, M.D., Memorial Award – John R. Balmes, M.D., Physician Member, California Air Resources Board:  Dr. Balmes is a Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco where he is chief of the Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at San Francisco General Hospital, and director of the Human Exposure Laboratory (HEL) of the Lung Biology Center.  Under the leadership of Dr. Balmes, the HEL was the first group to demonstrate microscopic tissue-based evidence of ozone-induced airway injury and inflammation in humans.  Dr. Balmes is also professor of Environmental Health Sciences at UC Berkeley where he directs the Center for Environmental Public Health Tracking.  At the center, he collaborates in epidemiological studies of chronic effects of air pollutants, including the effects of ozone on individuals with asthma, and the impacts of inhaled particulate matter on the respiratory system.   Dr. Balmes serves on numerous key scientific committees and serves as the medical member on the California Air Resources Board.

Award for Public Education of Air Quality Issues – Maroon 5, Green Music Group:  Maroon 5 is an award-winning pop rock band based in Los Angeles, whose members share a strong interest in environmental causes.  The group is an active member of the Green Music Group, a large coalition of music professionals and fans who work together to stimulate positive environmental progress.  While on national and international music tours, Maroon 5 includes “green” elements such as an eco-village with environmental displays and fan-engagement activities, carbon offset opportunities, Jumbotron eco-slideshows, and eco-friendly event management.  Maroon 5 also participates in the Patagonia Music Collective where fans can purchase exclusive tracks from favorite performers with profits benefitting environmental causes.

Award for Model Community Achievement – City of San Juan Capistrano and City of Yucaipa: 

The City of San Juan Capistrano’s concept of sustainability means a commitment to meeting today's needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet theirs.  The southern Orange County city took a unique perspective when it adopted its ‘Go Green SJC!’ program.  The program is a multifaceted approach to hands-on waste reduction and pollution prevention efforts at both the household and community level. It allows residents, community-based groups, businesses, schools and other institutions to understand how daily choices on everything from food to energy can affect the larger community.  The city’s Green Home Program and Ecology Center are just two examples of the city’s commitment to sustainability today and tomorrow.

The City of Yucaipa’s population has grown more than 25 percent over the past decade as the area continues to transition to suburban development. Its Transportation Management program allows Yucaipa to reduce average daily vehicle trips in the community through a combination of well-balanced housing, pedestrian-oriented downtown revitalization, support of public and alternative transportation options, incentive partnerships with local agencies, and implementation of a Safe Routes to School program.  The city was also a finalist in the 2011 National Civic League's All America City competition for exemplary grassroots community problem-solving through collaboration.

S. Roy Wilson Memorial Award for Leadership in Government –  Rep. Jerry Lewis, U.S. Congressional District 41:  U.S. Rep. Jerry Lewis has served his constituents and California for more than 40 years.  Prior to joining Congress in 1978, Lewis served 10 years in the Assembly and while there he authored AB 250 -- the Lewis Air Quality Management Act that created the South Coast Air Quality Management District.  The bill made history in the regional coordination of air quality planning and enforcement, beginning a path for Southern California to make meaningful progress against smog.  A graduate of UCLA with a degree in government, he worked as an insurance executive before beginning his elected career on the San Bernardino school board.  During his tenure, Rep. Lewis focused on transportation emissions as the largest source of urban air pollution. As a member and chair of the House Appropriations Committee he secured bi-partisan funding of key projects ranging from the Alameda Corridor, the U.S. EPA's air pollutant monitoring program and incentives for alternative fuel vehicles.

This award honors Rep. Lewis as a role model for genuine leadership in the arena of clean air progress. The award is named for former Riverside County Supervisor and AQMD Governing Board Vice Chairman S. Roy Wilson, Ed.D., who passed away in August 2009.

Award for Advancement in Innovative Transportation Projects – ICO Group, South Bay Cities Council of Governments LUV Project and Waste Management: 

Developer ICO Real Estate Group (ICO) completed this year the first development in the United States of a commercial property with a privately owned, publicly accessible electric vehicle fast-charge station.  The Ree-Charge 'N Go charger station in San Bernardino is home to retailers 7-Eleven and T-Mobile and includes a multi-car recharging island.  The quick-charge system provides an 80 percent charge in less than 30 minutes and a quick “top off” charge in 10 minutes or less.  The charger station project was also seen as an environmental plus during local permitting of the fully-leased retail center.  The increase of plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles has spurred consumer interest in quick-charge resources to supplement residential and workplace charging resources. 

South Bay Cities Council of Government’s (SBCCOG) innovative Local Use Vehicle (LUV) project includes a pilot fleet of 100 percent electric, zero-emission LUVs that are compact, short-range, and low-speed. The project showcases their usefulness for local trips around South Bay neighborhoods and shopping districts.  SBCCOG’s neighborhood electric vehicle demonstration program is the first to be available to the general public, and the only such project that utilizes GPS to track usage.  Data collected on the project is publicly available on SBCCOG’s website as a blueprint for consideration and use by other cities.  Local-use electric vehicles are becoming a logical choice for a household second car as people begin to consider having a zero-emission car for frequent short trips and a longer-range vehicle just for long trips.

Over the past two decades, Waste Management has served as an alternative fuel pioneer, paving the way toward a new era of low-emission public works operations.  This past year, Waste Management achieved a significant clean air milestone as they deployed the 1,000th natural gas truck in its heavy-duty fleet.  In addition, they have also installed dozens of compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) fueling stations and are working on projects to produce renewable natural gas from the solid waste it collects.  Waste Management also shares its lessons learned and operational expertise with others as a member of the California Natural Gas Vehicle Partnership.  Natural gas fleets can perform the same service but with half the smog-forming emissions than their diesel counterparts, with no harmful diesel soot, lower greenhouse gases and a reduced dependence on imported petroleum. 

Award for Promotion of Good Environmental Stewardship – Enterprise Holdings and Inland Empire Utilities Agency: 

Enterprise Holdings is the parent company of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, the largest rental car company in the United States.  Recently, Enterprise has focused considerable effort on bringing rental electric vehicles (EVs) to Southern California.  At 12 locations in the greater Los Angeles area, Enterprise has 50 EVs available for rent.  This provides consumers an opportunity to reduce uncertainties about EVs through renting one as an extended “test-drive.”  Enterprise has also partnered with South Bay Cities Council of Governments and the City of Torrance in a local-use vehicle pilot effort, offering an agreement at its Torrance branch whereby EV owners can get a 15% discount on rental of a longer-range vehicle, along with free charging of their shorter-range battery EV.  Enterprise believes that investing and integrating clean-fueled vehicles into its fleets is an important long-term business strategy.

The Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA) is a municipal water district in San Bernardino County that provides essential public services to approximately 850,000 residents in seven cities.  IEUA’s primary mission is to supply imported and recycled water, and to collect, treat, and dispose of wastewater.  They perform these services in a sustainable manner by incorporating a growing portfolio of innovative energy-efficiency and water-conservation practices, and also provide other utility-related services including biosolids composting and renewable power generation.  IEUA has shown leadership in establishing a more comprehensive approach to managing water resources through a portfolio of sustainable practices that also delivers co-benefits of renewable power, water conservation, and improved air quality for the same investment.  Its portfolio includes the world’s largest fuel cell operating on digester gas, the first utility-scale wind turbine, and the use of power purchase agreements to allow for affordable procurement of renewably generated power. 

AQMD is the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

This page updated: October 12, 2012