Hastings, Nebraska – (The Hosting News) – June 27, 2007 – Yahoo! Inc. has revealed the winner of its ”Be a Better Planet” Greenest City in America challenge. The birthplace of Kool-Aid, Hastings, Nebraska, will receive a grand prize of $250,000, to be dedicated toward city greening projects, developed in conjunction with Global Green USA.
More than 350 cities participated in the ”Be a Better Planet” program, which challenged Americans to take action against climate change and use tools such as Yahoo! Green, Yahoo! Answers and Yahoo! oneSearch to become better planetarians. Yahoo! also announced the challenge’s top ten cities, which ranged from Mill Valley, Calif., to Fairfax, Va.
Yahoo! Co-Founder David Filo remarked, ”The determined green spirit demonstrated by the people of Hastings, Nebraska, underscores Yahoo!’s belief that individual actions can add up to significant change. Cities from the coasts to the heartland rallied together to participate and we’re encouraged by how the citizens came together around this important cause.”
Yahoo! will declare Hastings the ”Greenest City in America” at a Yahoo!-hosted Nebraska-style BBQ and celebration this evening at 6:00pm at Hastings’ Chautauqua Park. Residents of Hastings are invited to join Mayor Matt Rossen as he accepts the award on behalf of the city. Nebraska Lieutenant Governor Rick Sheehy will also be in attendance, as well as other state government officials and surrounding city mayors.
Hastings Mayor Rossen commented, ”Hastings is honored to be a part of Yahoo!’s ‘Be a Better Planet’ program and to be crowned as the greenest city in America. This achievement has spurred us to become even greener, and we thank all of the citizens in central Nebraska who have supported us and helped promote this great city and state in which we live.”
Better City, Better Planet Following the month-long campaign, the top ten Greenest Cities in America were determined as: 1. Hastings, Nebraska 2. Pelzer, South Carolina 3. San Carlos, California 4. Mill Valley, California 5. Topeka, Kansas 6. Dover, Delaware 7. Spring, Texas 8. Lawrence, Kansas 9. Walnut Creek, California 10.
Fairfax, Virginia In addition to the top prize awarded to Hastings, the top five cities are being rewarded today with deliveries of thousands of energy-efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), compliments of Yahoo!. Green-minded citizens participated in the “Be a Better Planet” Greenest City in America challenge by earning participation credits in the following ways: — Yahoo! Answers: Helping save the planet by earnings the best answer for an environmental question and contributing to the growing body of knowledge and advice on Yahoo! Answers; — Yahoo! oneSearch: Learning more about living a greener life by conducting ”eco-friendly” mobile searches (”organic food,” ”public transport,” ”recycle center,” ”bike,” ”ride share”) on Yahoo! oneSearch, a new search service with results optimized for the mobile phone; — Yahoo! Green Pledge: Visiting Yahoo! Green and committing to lowering their carbon diet by pledging such actions as changing light bulbs, taking public transportation, using reusable shopping bags, properly inflating tires, and recycling more.
The winning city was offered the choice of either a fleet of hybrid taxi cabs, similar to those donated to New York City during the campaign’s kickoff on May 14th, or the equivalent cash donation. Hastings, which has signed the U.S. Mayor’s Climate Protection Agreement, selected the latter in order to further its city environmental programs. Current initiatives include conversion of methane to energy at its pollution control center, local production of Ethanol E85, extensive networks of parks and hiking and biking trails, and installation of energy-efficient street lighting. Global Green USA will help Hastings identify potential city greening projects, such as expansion of renewable energy programs and energy-efficient renovations for city buildings.
Matt Petersen, Global Green USA President added, ”We are so excited that the residents of Hastings have helped demonstrate their outstanding commitment to smart, sustainable solutions that save money, improve health, and protect our environment. We look forward to working with the Mayor, the Chamber of Commerce and all of the city’s residents to help recommend the green policies and projects that will benefit the people of Hastings even further and serve as an example for cities across the country.”
Inspired by the winning answers contributed by Hastings residents during the challenge, Mayor Rossen will also solicit thoughts and advice for how to invest the $250,000 prize by using Yahoo! Answers, the leading Q and A site on the web. Yahoo!’s Commitment to the Planet Yahoo! has a long track record of supporting environmental sustainability both in its operations and on its global network. Yahoo! has committed to become carbon neutral this year. The company also uses renewable power, hydroelectric energy, and passive cooling at its various facilities and data centers. Its award-winning commute alternatives program offers incentives such as Wi-Fi enabled biodiesel shuttles and generous public transit subsidies. The company has also launched several sustainability-focused product initiatives, including its Yahoo! Green eco-site, the Yahoo! Autos Green Center, and 18Seconds.org, dedicated to educating Americans about the cost-savings and environmental benefits of CFL bulbs.
Global Green USA is a national environmental group that works in partnership with local governments and other public entities to demonstrate the benefits of green building and smart solutions to climate change. Global Green provides options for establishing green building programs that protect local quality of life and the environment, provides training for staff and constituents, and encourages the development of incentives for green building projects.
Yahoo! Inc. is a leading global Internet brand and one of the most trafficked Internet destinations worldwide. Yahoo!’s mission is to connect people to their passions, their communities, and the world’s knowledge. Yahoo! is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California.
For more information about the
”Be a Better Planet” initiative, please visit: http://better.yahoo.com/planet.
For more information about Global Green USA, please visit: www.globalgreen.org.
To learn more about Yahoo!, please visit: www.yahoo.com.