More than 200 people then attended the awards luncheon at the Lexington Convention Center at which 10 awards were given out to those individuals or businesses honored for preserving and enhancing this beautiful state of ours through energy efficiency, soil conservation, mine land reclamation, farmland stewardship or innovation.
Travis Kavulla, Commisssioner of the Montana Public Service Commission led off the morning with a talk on utility regulation. Kenneth Wagner, Senior Advisor for Regional and State Affairs, U.S. EPA, then spoke about the changing climate at the agency and how science is driving everything the agency does.
Kentucky Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Aaron Keatley led a panel discussion “Celebrating Our Past, Investing in Our Future.” On the panel were
Kell Kelly, Senior Advisor to the Administrator, U.S. EPA, Trey Glenn, Regional Administrator, U.S. EPA, John Bevington, Deputy Director for Business Development, KY CED, Kate Shanks, Director of Public Affairs, KY Chamber of Commerce, Tony Hatton, Deputy Commissioner KY DEP and Pete Goodmann, Di
rector, Division of Water, KY DEP.
Issues surrounding the DEP’s regulation of water, wastewater and brownfields were discussed, as was the need for billions of dollars in infrastructure improvements just to keep the systems in their current shape.
The discussion portion of the day was capped by a 30-minute talk by Gov. Matt Bevin and an exhortation by him to both Cabinet employees and those associated with the Cabinet to continue to make Kentucky “sparkle.”
Awards given out at the luncheon included:
1) The Kentucky Heritage Land Conservation Fund Stewardship Award given by the Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission and presented to Oldham County Fiscal Court.
2) The Outstanding Kentucky Forest Steward Award given by the Division of Forestry and presented to Jerry and Portia Brown.
3) The Excellence in Reclamation Award given by the Division of Abandoned Mine Lands and by the Division of Reclamation and Enforcement and presented to the Peter Cave Mining Company.
4) The 2017 Department for Natural Resources Award for Excellence in Safety, given by the Department for Natural Resources and presented the Survant Mine, owned by Armstrong Coal Company, Inc., Madisonville, KY.
5) The KY EXCEL Champion Award, given by the Department of Environmental Protection, and presented to Sekisui S-Lec America.
6) The Environmental Pacesetter Award, given by the Department for Environmental Protection, and presented to L’Oréal USA Manufacturing, of Florence, KY.
7) The Resource Caretaker Award, given by the Department of Environmental Protection, and presented to the Marker’s Mark Environmental Team.
8) The Kentucky Excellence in Energy Leadership Award, given by the Department of Energy Development and Independence and presented to the Kentucky Army National Guard and Department of Military Affairs.
9) The Kentucky Excellence in Energy Leadership Award, given by the Department of Energy Development and Independence and presented to Owensboro Health Regional Hospital.
10) The Secretary’s Award, given by the Office of the Secretary of the Energy and Environment Cabinet and presented to Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.