Sustainable WW encourages low-energy travel alternatives

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Businesses and other organizations can go for the gold by embracing green.

In celebration of Earth Week later this month, Sustainable Walla Walla is gearing up for its annual Green Travel Competition, where businesses, agencies, schools, churches and other participating organizations embrace alternative, low-energy ways to get where they need to go.

Participants will be eligible for awards for the Best Green Travel programs in an array of categories. They also compete to have their name engraved on a travelling trophy for the Grand Prize winner.

Those who pledge to travel green throughout the week of April 21-27 can pick up “I’m Travelling Green for Earth Week” stickers, available through Valley Transit. The stickers entitle bearers to ride the bus free that week.

Green travel can include biking, riding the bus, walking, carpooling, using a scooter and other inventive modes of travel that serve as alternatives to conventional single-occupancy vehicles.

“Green commuting is a good way to build good health, conserve natural resources, reduce our carbon footprint, save money, build community and increase mobility,” said Sustainable Walla Walla Chairwoman Linda Herbert in an announcement about the competition. “It’s also a good way to help avoid more severe climate change and to have more fun.”

This is the fourth year for the competition. During the inaugural year in 2010, Coffey Communications was the grand-prize winner. The last two years the top prize went to the Walla Walla Joint Community Development Agency.

Participating organizations are asked to send in reports describing their Green Travel programs, including publicity, incentives and results that highlight numbers and percentages of participants, green miles travelled if possible and any other significant details. That should be sent to Sustainable Walla Walla, P.O. Box 1222, Walla Walla, WA 99362 or to sustainableww@charter.net by May 13. For more details, visit sustainableww.org .

Strictly Business is a local business column. Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at vickihillhouse@wwub.com or 526-8321.

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