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The White House
For Immediate Release

Obama Administration Launches First GreenGov Symposium, Hosted by The George Washington University

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) launched the first annual GreenGov Symposium today, a three-day event held October 5-7, 2010 and hosted by The George Washington University (GW).  More than 1,200 attendees and 200 speakers and panelists participated from across Federal, state and local governments, nonprofit and academic communities, and the private sector to identify opportunities around greening the Federal Government. 

The Symposium marks the one year anniversary of President Obama’s Executive Order 13514 on Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy and Economic Performance.  The Executive Order commits Federal agencies to lead by example toward a clean energy economy, and sets targets to reduce greenhouse gas pollution, increase energy efficiency, reduce fleet petroleum consumption, conserve water, reduce waste, support sustainable communities, and leverage Federal purchasing power to promote environmentally-responsible products and technologies.

CEQ Chair Nancy Sutley and GW President Steven Knapp kicked off the Symposium, which also featured keynotes from U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and President of The Biomimicry Institute and co-founder of the Biomimicry Guild, Janine Benyus.  

"The broad participation in the Symposium from inside and outside of government indicates how invested we all are in a sustainable future for the Federal Government, and for all Americans," said Nancy Sutley, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality.  "One year ago today, President Obama signed an Executive Order that asked the Federal Government to look inward and push ourselves to operate more sustainably, and that is exactly what this Symposium is helping to accomplish."

"We are honored to play a supporting role in the federal government's effort to become a model of sustainability," GW President Steven Knapp said.  "The government has a unique capacity to develop innovations that institutions like ours will be able to emulate and that will not only improve the environment but strengthen America's economic competitiveness."

Sustainability leaders from across the country participated in the event.  The Symposium targeted a wide range of sustainability topics, including clean energy, water efficiency, climate and adaptation, sustainable buildings, greening the supply chain, and more. 

Participants shared challenges, best practices and discussed cutting-edge approaches for the future.  A total of 76 session topics including water efficiency, getting to zero waste and greening the supply chain, among others, will be covered at the Symposium over the next two days.  To view the complete workshop agenda, visit: