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Answering the Call for Innovative Solutions to Environmental Challenges

Valued Contributor
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By Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, Assistant Administrator of EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention 


For 25 years, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and American Chemical Society (ACS) have worked together to sponsor the Green Chemistry Challenge Awards, recognizing leaders in innovative green chemistry. I’m proud to say that we’re once again looking for businesses and individuals to answer the call for nominations for the 2021 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards.


These prestigious awards recognize innovation by American businesses and researchers that redesign chemical products and processes to reduce or eliminate the use and manufacture of hazardous substances. These innovations help keep businesses globally competitive, prevent pollution at its source, and protect public health and the environment.


For example, one of this year’s winners developed a new pesticide based on a naturally occurring component of spider venom that effectively controls target pests while showing no adverse effects to people or the environment. Another winner improved the process for producing certain antiviral drugs that increases manufacturing efficiency, reduces waste, and results in costs savings. These innovations, along with those of this year’s other winners, are amazing accomplishments, and w...


Our efforts to recognize, encourage, and speed the adoption of green chemistry have produced real results. Through 2019, Green Chemistry Challenge Award-winning technologies have provided big opportunities for pollution prevention, including:

  • Eliminating 826 million pounds of hazardous chemicals and solvents each year—enough to fill almost 3,800 railroad tank cars or a train nearly 47 miles long; and,
  • Saving 21 billion gallons of water each year—the amount used by 820,000 people annually.

The 2021 Green Chemistry Challenge Awards nomination package is now available and nominations are due by December 4, 2020. We’ll also be hosting a webinar on September 23, 2020, for those interested in applying to provide an overview of the requirements and criteria and tips for submitting your application package. Register for the webinar.


If you’ve developed a new technology or redesigned a process that helps solve real world environmental challenges, this is your chance to join the list of over 120 distinguished award winners. I know that EPA and ACS are excited to learn more about the latest advancements in green chemistry.