Environmental Leadership Program honors Denver International Airport with 2017 24-Karat Gold Award

Mark Salley, Communications Director | 303-692-2013 | mark.salley@state.co.us
DENVER – Today, the Environmental Leadership Program, administered by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, presented Denver International Airport with the 2017 24-Karat Gold Award for its innovative food donation program. The program is on track to provide more than 110,000 pounds of food this year to those in need.
The award was presented during the 18th Annual Colorado Environmental Leadership Program Awards ceremony, which took place at Infinity Park Event Center in Glendale.
The 24-Karat Gold Award recognizes Gold Leader members who have gone above and beyond to create and implement a program or initiative that has made a measurable contribution to the environment, the economy and the community. The 24-Karat Gold Award winner is selected by Gold Leader peers.
Denver International Airport received the award for its creative efforts to reduce food waste while donating to those in need. Food waste has been a challenge at the airport, where airport concessionaires and airport flight kitchens generate numerous excess food products that still are usable and nutritious.
In fall 2015, airport officials created a pilot project to donate excess food to area nonprofits, primarily Metro Caring. In 2016, more than 63,500 pounds of food were donated, rather than taken to the landfill. In addition to helping those in need, Denver International Airport’s innovative food donation program greatly reduces waste at the landfill while also educating concessionaires about the national issue of food waste and how they can play a part in reducing it.
“Our innovative food donation program has provided the equivalent of more than 92,400 meals this year alone, and we continue to work with our concession partners to expand this program so we may further reduce waste and provide nutritious food to people in need,” airport CEO Kim Day said.
About Denver International Airport
Denver International Airport is the 18th-busiest airport in the world and the sixth-busiest airport in the United States. With 58.3 million passengers traveling through the airport each year, DEN is one of the busiest airline hubs in the world’s largest aviation market. DEN is the primary economic engine for the state of Colorado, generating more than $26 billion for the region annually. For more information, visit www.FlyDenver.com; check us out on YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram; like us on Facebook; and follow us on Twitter. For current employment opportunities, visit jobs.flydenver.com.
About the Environmental Leadership Program
This statewide environmental recognition program offers benefits and incentives to members who voluntarily go beyond compliance with state and federal regulations and who are committed to continual environmental improvement. It is open to all Colorado businesses, industries, offices, educational institutions, municipalities, government agencies, communities, nonprofits and other organizations. 
Organizations work through three levels of membership: Bronze, Silver and Gold. For a complete list of organizations with Bronze, Silver and Gold designations and summaries of their environmental efforts, please contact Lynette Myers, Environmental Leadership Program manager, at lynette.myers@state.co.us, or visit the department’s Environmental Leadership Program website.