Northern New Mexico's Community Network

Rebuild New Mexico Receives Environmental Award

At a ceremony October 4, 2000 New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson and Environment Secretary, Pete Maggiore, presented a "Green Zia" environmental award to Peter Alexander, Director of Rebuild New Mexico. Attending the luncheon ceremony were also Chris Wentz, Director of the NM Office of Energy Conservation, and Jennifer Salisbury, Cabinet Secretary for the NM Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department. The award recognized the Rebuild program for its commitment to environmental excellence, citing in particular its strengths in "Leadership" and "Customer Involvement" in reducing pollution through more efficient use of energy.

"Rebuild New Mexico is a joint program of the US Department of Energy and the NM Office of Energy Conservation" explained Alexander to the 120 attendees as he accepted the award. "The program provides free technical assistance and financial advice to help building owners and managers reduce utility bills while improving building performance." Alexander also noted a strategic partnership formed recently between the Green Zia program and Rebuild New Mexico. "The analytical processes and end results of both programs are complementary," he said. "Already the Rebuild Team and the NM Environment Department's Green Zia team have put on a joint workshop for Santa Fe City Hall in which they identified more than $200,000 per year in potential cost savings that could be attributed to energy efficiency in a single building."

The Green Zia is more than just an awards program. It is a comprehensive and systematic approach to continuous environmental improvement. Using the Green Zia "Tools" a business can analyze every aspect of its operations to minimize waste, reduce pollution and improve employee and stakeholder safety. No organization in New Mexico has yet received an "Excellence" award, which would indicate a compete integration of values and systems for environmental improvement into every level and aspect of an organization's operations. Even the awards application process requires an analytical approach, examining the role of environmental factors in seven key areas such as leadership, employee involvement, planning, and process management for continuous improvement. In the two year history of the awards program this was the first time that an award was given specifically for energy efficiency.

New Mexico businesses interested in learning more about either the Green Zia or the Rebuild New Mexico programs can call Peter Alexander at (505) 243-5703, or Pat Gallagher of the NM Environment Department at (505) 827-0677.

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