THE outstanding contributions of Clarence Valley individuals, businesses and community organisations have been recognised at the annual Living Sustainably awards hosted by the Clarence Valley Council.
Mayor Richie Williamson said organic gardens, environmental education programs and recycling schemes were some of the high-quality local initiatives that were honoured.
"This has been a great opportunity to recognise the individuals and organisations that made a significant contribution to a more sustainable Clarence Valley," he said.
"The high standard of the nominations will also inspire others to find ways to reduce their own impact on the environment."
Taking out the award for the community group category was the Clarence Valley Wildlife Information, Rescue & Education Service Environment Centre for its 25-year leadership role in wildlife rescue, community education and awareness raising, and estimated 50% of its in-care animals being released back into the wild.
Dr Tony Courtice received the individual award. Cr Williamson said Dr Courtice's passion for sustainable living was shown in all aspects of his life, from his home through to his home-grown produce and animals.
Dundurrabin Public School won the school category for its commitment to environmental sustainability and education.
The school has been involved in waste management programs, the water wise program and the organic gardens.
The business award went to Jamie Kenneally.
From humble beginnings in 1983 from an old tin shed in South Grafton, Mr Kenneally has built a business around recycling, winning contracts with the council to operate the Grafton recycling centre from 2002 to 2013. It is estimated that Mr Kenneally's contribution to resource recovery is about 66,000 tonnes of recycling, or three years of landfill space.
Winner: Clarence Valley Wildlife Information, Rescue & Education Service
Winner: Dr Tony Courtice
Winner: Dundurrabin Public School
Highly Commended: Gulmarrad Public School and Yamba Public
Winner: Jamie Kenneally
Highly Commended: Summerland Credit Union and Good life Designs Pty Ltd