For over a decade, the Greening Diplomacy Initiative (GDI) has catalyzed climate solutions within the U.S. State Department’s management and operations to help conserve natural and financial resources, build climate resilience, and showcase U.S. innovation. Winners of the annual GDI Awards, including the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO) sponsored Resilience Innovation Fund, were announced today during a department-wide townhall. Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Administration Alaina Teplitz, OBO Director William Moser, and Acting Chief Sustainability Officer Caroline D’Angelo led a discussion on how the Department can leverage its global footprint to minimize its emissions and bolster climate resilience.
The winners of the 2023 GDI Awards showcase innovative and impactful initiatives that advance U.S. diplomacy and support our efforts to meet the federal mandates outlined in Executive Orders 14008 and 14057 and the Federal Sustainability Plan.
Embassy Dar es Salaam is the overseas winner of the 2023 GDI Award for Excellence in Team Sustainability Performance. In 2022, Embassy Dar es Salaam made significant strides in improving efficiency, reducing waste, and engaging with the embassy and local community through eco-diplomacy initiatives.
The Bureau of Information Resource Management’s IT Sustainability Working Group is the domestic winner of the 2023 GDI Award for Excellence in Team Sustainability Performance. The IT Sustainability Working Group has identified 19 IT sustainability initiatives within IRM and accompanying goals and metrics to measure the success of these programs. These efforts have an estimated lifetime cost avoidance of over $300 million (as of FY 2022) to the State Department.
Over 1,100 Department employees voted for their top choice among the team nominees, electing Embassy Islamabad as the winner of the 2023 People’s Choice Award for Team Sustainability Performance.
Alex Raley, Bureau of Administration, is the winner of the GDI Award for Excellence in Individual Sustainability Leadership for Domestic U.S. Direct Hires for his leadership in construction of a new LEED Gold certified building at the National Foreign Affairs Training Center in Arlington, Virginia.
Alla Kamins, of Consulate General Karachi, is the winner of the GDI Award for Excellence in Individual Sustainability Leadership for Overseas U.S. Direct Hires for her efforts to establish a new Green Team in a challenging operating environment.
Lauren McBroom, of Embassy Dar es Salaam, is the winner of the GDI Award for Excellence in Individual Leadership for overseas employed Eligible Family Members for significantly reducing energy and water consumption and increasing recycling.
Yusif Abasov, of Embassy Baku, is the winner of the GDI Award for Excellence in Individual Sustainability Leadership for Locally Employed Staff for his development of key relationships with government, schools, and civil society to advance and amplify Embassy Baku’s greening initiatives.
Now in its fifth year, the Resilience Innovation Fund, sponsored by OBO, provides up to $1 million for innovative projects at posts that advance the Department’s resilience and sustainability in its operations and facilities. Additionally, the Bureaus of Western Hemisphere Affairs and Near Eastern Affairs have also fully or partially funded several projects that were not eligible for OBO funding.
This year, 20 embassies and consulates will receive funding for a wide array of projects, including a seaside retention wall, electric vehicle (EV) charging, rainwater catchers, LED retrofits, drought resistant landscaping, irrigation systems, recycling and composting programs, and small-scale renewable energy projects.
Winning diplomatic posts include Embassies Asuncion, Baku, Bishkek, Bogota, Islamabad, Kingston, Lomé, Luxembourg, Mexico City, Muscat, Manama, Nairobi, New Delhi, Panama, Santo Domingo, Seoul, Singapore, Vilnius, and Consulate Generals Ciudad Juarez and Recife.
The Greening Diplomacy Initiative is managed by the Office of Management Strategy and Solutions (M/SS). Learn more about GDI and M/SS at: www.state.gov/eco-diplomacy.
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