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SPOKANE, Wash. – On November 2nd, the Spokane Indians were recognized for their Zero Waste Campaign during the 2019 calendar year, receiving the Washington State Recycling Association (WSRA) Recycler of the Year Award, in the Business Generator category. The WSRA presents annual Recycler of the Year (ROY) awards to spotlight individuals, businesses, government agencies and community organizations that are making outstanding contributions to strengthening and expanding recycling and waste prevention practices across the state.
“We’re honored to receive this award and to continue building on our responsibility as an environmental leader,” said Senior Vice President Otto Klein. “We recognize that we have the opportunity to impact the community through our efforts at Avista Stadium and this award is a testament to the work that we’ve done and will continue to do.”
The Indians were nominated by Kris Major, Education Coordinator for the City of Spokane’s Solid Waste Department. “Striving towards zero waste is difficult for any business, let alone one that deals with the public in the numbers that the Spokane Indians do. This recognition is well-deserved and the organization’s hard work and commitment to sustainability can be an inspiration to us all and a model for others to follow,” said Major.
In 2019, the Indians announced their commitment to becoming a zero waste facility with the Zero Waste Campaign. 60 zero waste stations were installed throughout Avista Stadium and an investment was made in compostable items, including beer cups, Pepsi cups (including lids and straws) and utensils. In 2019 alone, the Indians increased traditional recycling by 29% and diverted 12 tons of compostable materials from the waste stream, which equates to 28% of total waste. The compostable materials collected at the stadium were then transferred to a local facility, where they were processed into a healthy, soil building compost, used in agriculture, landscape, turf, and garden applications. A portion of that compost was eventually brought back and used in flower beds at Avista Stadium, creating a closed-loop system.
“We understand the importance of doing our part to protect the environment and resources for future generations,” said Klein. “With the help of our local partners and staff who work tirelessly every day, the Zero Waste Campaign is the next chapter for how we are striving to take care of the place we all call home.”
The Spokane Indians would like to thank the presenting partner of the Zero Waste Campaign, Spokane County Regional Solid Waste, and major contributors: the Spokane Tribe of Indians, Wittkopf Landscape Supply, Sunshine Disposal & Recycling, and Barr-Tech.