CHICAGO – April 1, 2011. Governor Pat Quinn today declared the month of April as Earth Month, after delivering the keynote address at the 3rd Annual Sustainable Schools Symposium at Chicago High School for Agricultural Sciences. The Governor also presented this year’s Environmental Hero Awards to groups and individuals who have shown a strong commitment to the health and protection of the environment in Illinois.
“Earth Month reminds as all that sustainability begins with us, right here in our own communities,” said Governor Quinn. “Every day we must work to instill a green way of thinking and a green way of acting in our youth, our friends and our neighbors. Together we can ensure a cleaner and greener future for Illinois.”
Governor Quinn was joined at the daylong symposium by officials from the Chicago Public Schools, and participants from schools across Illinois, including students, teachers, administrators and other staff.
Participants attended workshops and heard presentations from local, state and federal policy-makers, along with educators, green-sector business owners and non-profit leaders. Topics discussed included: green school construction and renovation; energy usage in the classroom; environmental education; student environmental action, financing for sustainability projects, and student led tours of the campus.
The event was hosted by the Illinois Green Governments Coordinating Council, the Chicago Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council and the Chicago Public Schools, so that participants could exchange ideas that will enhance and promote green practices in elementary and secondary schools across Illinois.
During April, various state agencies will hold Earth Month events and programs to educate the public about the importance of environmentalism and conserving natural resources. For more information about Earth Month activities, and for a list of the Environmental Hero Award recipients, please visit Green.Illinois.gov.
Governor Quinn serves as the chairman of the Illinois Green Governments Coordinating Council, which was established to coordinate state policies and programs that reduce pollution and integrate resource conservation into government operations. He has also signed a number of Executive Orders and laws to ensure greater energy efficiency, use of renewable energy, and protection of Illinois’ land, air and water resources.