Business Environmental Awards Categories & Eligibility

The Business Environmental Awards honor companies and organizations through five different categories. Please review the following category descriptions to ensure you are applying in the correct category. In addition, please review past award-winning applications to ensure you are submitting a strong application.

2020 Business Environmental Awards Application window opens September 23, 2019 and closes December 6, 2019.

Application Fee:

  • Small Organization (100 employees or less) - $70 (or $50 for early registration)

  • Medium Organization (101-1,000 employees) - $245 (or $175 for early registration)

  • Large Organization (1,001 or more employees) - $455 (or $325 for early registration)

Acterra Award for Sustainability
Acterra’s highest award recognizes businesses whose programs achieve significant triple bottom line benefits (people, planet, profit) and advance the state of sustainability in a given industry or across industry sectors. Model programs are established and holistic; promoting sustainability throughout the entire value chain and permeating through most key business functions.

Eligibility: Any private or public business entity, with significant facilities in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, or Sonoma County is eligible to apply. The private or public business entity must prove that primary business operations occur in one of the given eligible counties with clear social and environmental benefits to the local community. 

Environmental Innovation
Rewards the successful implementation of a new or significantly improved environmental product, solution or technology, such as a new business service, a new invention or a new way of solving an environmental problem.

Eligibility: Any private or public business entity, division or facility with a project located in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano or Sonoma County is eligible to apply. The project must have clear and demonstrated environmental benefits to the local community.

Environmental Project
Rewards a specific environmental project that has demonstrated significant leadership in a focused area, such as resource conservation (water, waste, energy), pollution prevention, or minimizing carbon footprint. Sample projects include, but are not limited to:

 An environmental education program that measurably changes behavior of employees, suppliers or customers

 A landscape project that protects and restores habitat and open space

 An outreach program committed to improving the quality of life of its employees and the community

 An exemplary energy or water conservation program

 An employee Green Team that creates remarkable and tangible solutions within the organization or among its employees

Eligibility: Any private or public business entity, division or facility with a project located in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano or Sonoma County is eligible to apply. The project must have clear and demonstrated environmental benefits to the local community.

Spare the Air Leadership Award
Sponsored by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District

Rewards a specific air quality improvement project that has demonstrated significant leadership in a focused area, such as reducing air pollutants, greenhouse gases, pollution prevention, or developed innovative approaches to cleaner air. Sample projects include, but are not limited to:

 A comprehensive program that reduces vehicle emissions

 An air quality education program that measurably changes behavior of employees, suppliers or customers

 An air quality outreach program committed to improving the quality of life of its employees and the community

 An exemplary emissions reduction program

 An employee Green Team that creates remarkable and tangible solutions within the organization or among its employees

Eligibility: Any private or public business entity, with facilities headquartered in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, or within the boundaries of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District’s jurisdiction of Southern Solano County and Southern Sonoma County is eligible to apply. The private or public business entity must prove that primary business operations occur in one of the given eligible counties with clear environmental benefits to the local community.

Sustainable Built Environment
Rewards a building project that conserves natural resources and promotes the health and well-being of its occupants through innovative sustainable design.

Eligibility: Any private or public business entity, division or facility with a multi-family or commercial building project located in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano or Sonoma County is eligible to apply. Eligible building projects must provide building performance data for a minimum of one year. Single family homes will be considered if there is potential for replication of the project.