Earth Week Green Travel Competition


The third time is a charm for the Umatilla Ranger District of the United States Forest Service.  In an awards ceremony at the Downtown Farmers Market on Saturday, May 18, the Forest Service was awarded the grand prize in Sustainable Walla Walla’s Green Travel Challenge for Earth Week 2013, and had its name engraved on the travelling trophy for the event.  USFS also took third place in Sustainable Walla Walla’s 2010 competition and second place during last year’s challenge. 

The City of Walla Walla was the second-place winner in this year’s competition. An additional certificate was awarded to Providence St. Mary Medical Center as the participant with what was judged to be the best sustainability program.  In addition, the Washington State Penitentiary received an honorable mention certificate and Valley Transit was honored for their ongoing support of the Challenge by providing free bus passes to all participants during Earth Week.

The annual awards are given by Sustainable Walla Walla to the businesses, agencies, schools, and organizations in the Walla Walla area with the best Green Travel programs for employees, students, customers and members during Earth Week.

Green Travel programs encourage people to look for low-energy ways to get to and from work, school, worship, meetings, and other tasks throughout the week to help make our community and globe more sustainable.  Green travel includes bike, bus, walking, carpool, scooters, and other low-energy alternatives to travel by four-wheeled fossil fuel-driven Single Occupancy Vehicles (SOVs).

The USFS had the best rate of green employee travel of any participant at over 30%.  The City of Walla Walla was second in percentage of green travel, and also had an excellent green travel incentive program, as did the Washington State Penitentiary and Providence St. Mary Medical Center.

For more information on the competition and the benefits of travelling green, visit the Sustainable Walla Walla website at, or email



For the second year in a row, the Walla Walla Joint Community Development Agency garnered the Grand Prize and the travelling trophy in the 2012 Green Travel Competition sponsored by Sustainable Walla Walla during Earth Week this year. The 13 staff members of the joint City of Walla Walla/County of Walla Walla planning agency had a 54% participation rate, with 45% of all commuting trips for the week having been by bicycle, walking, bus, ride sharing or other ways to get to and from work other than by fuel-consumptive single occupancy motor vehicles. The second place winner for the overall competition was the U.S. Forest Service, with increased numbers of participants this year, the highest participation rate at just over 54%, and 25% of all commute trips by green modes. The third place overall winner was the City of College Place, which had a 38% participation rate and logged in 23% green trips for all of its staff commuting during Earth Week. Wheatland Village Retirement Community won the residential services division. Wheatland staff walked 43 miles to work, cycled 106 miles, carpooled 913 miles, road scooters for 80 miles and road the bus for 9 miles for a total of 1151 green commute miles during Earth week, in addition to van and bus trips by 147 residents. The winner of the schools and colleges division for the third year in a row was Whitman College. Spearheaded by Whitman’s Sustainability Committee, the campus was divided into nine departmental teams who competed for the greatest number of green trips and a variety of prizes. The winning team was the Sciences Dept; Mathematics Division. Awards for the winners of the 2012 competition for the best Green Travel programs were made at noon on the opening day of the Walla Walla Farmers Market, May 5.