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Federal Green Challenge

Apply for a Federal Green Challenge Award

Recognition is a key element of EPA's Sustainable Materials Management Program and the Federal Green Challenge. Federal Green Challenge awards will be offered in two categories – data driven and narrative. Data driven awards will be offered at both national and EPA Regional levels while narrative awards will only be offered at the Regional level. Applicants will be evaluated on information submitted via the annual data and awards nomination sections of the Federal Green Challenge data management system.

EPA encourages all eligible federal facilities to apply for these awards. Smaller facilities will equitably compete with larger facilities. EPA recognizes that one size does not 'fit all' and may give multiple awards under one category to reflect the variation in federal facility types.


The Award Nominations period for FY2013 activities is now closed. Applications were due January 31, 2014.


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Eligibility Criteria

Participants are eligible to apply for a Federal Green Challenge award if you meet the following criteria:

  • Meet your Federal Green Challenge goals in the target area(s) for which you are seeking recognition (Waste, Purchasing, Electronics, Energy, Water, Transportation).
  • Submit your FY2013 annual results into the Federal Green Challenge Data Management System by the selected due date.
  • Submit an award nomination form in the Federal Green Challenge Data Management System by the selected due date.
  • Your facility possesses no formal environmental enforcement actions and no significant environmental violations in the last 3 years.

Note:  EPA facilities are not eligible for awards.

Awards Categories

Data driven awards will be given based on information submitted by participants in their annual data entered into the Federal Green Challenge data management system. Data driven awards will be evaluated based on two criteria:

  • Improvement - based on percentage improvement over the previous year’s numbers in a specific target area.
  • Overall level of performance – the annual cumulative percentage improvement in two or more target areas to determine the highest overall level of performance. 

Narrative awards will be given based on information submitted by participants in the award nomination form section of the Federal Green Challenge data management system. These narrative awards will be evaluated based on responses to the specific questions listed under each type of narrative award.  For scoring purposes, the questions/statements in each of the below sections are weighted equally.

  • Innovation – using or showing new methods or ideas
    • What innovative method(s) or idea(s) were used?
    • How they were these innovative methods or ideas used?
    • What criteria was evaluated or taken into account by the use of these innovative methods or ideas? Why was the implementation of your innovative method or idea so significant? 
    • What impact did your implementation of the method or idea have on your target area?
    • Describe how this was an innovative idea or method for your facility?
  • Education & Outreach – what actions were taken to promote education of environmental impacts and potential reductions for the FGC target areas?
    • Identify the percentage of your total target population reached by the education and outreach activity you want recognized. 
    • Describe the methods used to reach this target population?
    • How did you measure the results? What are the environmental impacts in real data (what you measured) as a result of education and outreach to your target population?
    • Why was the implementation of your education and outreach so significant?  Describe what obstacles you overcame.
    • What impact do you foresee this education to have on your target population in the future? 
  • Leadership – selection is based on narrative clearly addressing the following criteria:
    • Documentation, presentations and outreach that lead to other entity’s success in achieving significantly reduced environmental results as a result of that coaching.  What were those results in real data? 
    • Describe the efforts taken to mentor/assist others where those other entities achieved significantly reduced environmental results as a direct result of that coaching. 
    • As leadership should be defined through leading by example – how did you meet /exceed your own goals.
    • Describe how your entity’s leadership went outside your field of control. 
    • Why was the undertaking and evidence of your leadership so significant?

How to Apply for an Award

To apply for a Federal Green Challenge award, you must:

  • Submit your annual results into the Federal Green Challenge data management system by the selected due date
  • Meet your Federal Green Challenge goals in the target area in which you are applying for an award
  • Submit an award nomination form in the Federal Green Challenge data management system by the selected due date

Award Results

Award results will be announced in May 2014. All applicants will be notified of their results directly.  In addition, award winners will be listed on the Federal Green Challenge website.

How To Apply For A Federal Green Challenge Award
  1. Submit your annual results into the Federal Green Challenge Data Management System Exiting EPA (disclaimer) by the selected due date
  2. Meet your Federal Green Challenge goals in the target area in which you are applying for an award
  3. Submit an award nomination form in the Federal Green Challenge Data Management System Exiting EPA (disclaimer) by the selected due date

Award Results will be announced in May 2014.  All applicants will be notified of their results directly.  In addition, award winners will be listed on the FGC website.

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