The third-annual Earth Day Dallas festival, April 20-21, celebrated Earth Day by employing green practices at the event and inspiring attendees and exhibitors to incorporate conservation efforts in their own lives. - 24, May 2013
Sustainable practices employed by Earth Day Dallas include carbon offsets, waste diversion and on-site recycling. Green Mountain Energy donated carbon offsets and renewable energy to reduce the environmental impact of the event. The partnership between Earth Day Dallas and Green Mountain Energy offset 481,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions – the equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide emissions of 45 cars annually, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
“For a third year, Earth Day Dallas has inspired more people, businesses and organizations to make the environment a top priority,” said Susan Brosin, director of Earth Day Dallas. “But we know that to make real change, we must go beyond a two-day event. That’s why we make sure EDD leaves a positive impact on the environment, inspiring others to do the same throughout the year.”
The festival diverted 73 percent of waste from landfills by recycling 9,325 lbs. of cardboard, paper, plastic, aluminum bottles, food and compost plates, according to Community Waste Disposal. Additional on-site recycling provided by Honest Tea’s The Great Recycle initiative saved 6,890 bottles from landfills.
While more than 700 exhibits educated attendees how to go green at home and at work, many exhibitors were also inspired to amp up their green efforts after participating in the event and seeing sustainability in action.
“Earth Day Dallas 2013 was a wonderful success for us, exceeding all expectations,” said Dr. Clay D. Hanks, director of campus operations for Texas A&M Health Service Center (HSC). “The event facilitated several thought-provoking but practical concepts that we plan to implement over the next 12 months.”
Among the green practices Texas A&M HSC plans to adopt are converting all campus operations vehicles from gasoline/diesel to natural gas or electric; recapture condensate from air conditioning and rainwater for irrigation; convert all plastics used for dining purposes to biodegradables; develop community gardens; install wind/solar generators at the Baylor College of Dentistry (Dallas) parking garage and HSC McAllen campus.