When Earth Day and Birthday Coincide: U.S. Embassy Green Team Celebrates One Year of Going Green

Posted by Judith Ravin
April 22, 2011
Embassy Santo Domingo Celebrates Earth Day

A year has passed since the color green took on a whole new meaning around the U.S. Embassy in Santo Domingo. With the formation on Earth Day 2010 of the Green Team -- a group of highly motivated environment-friendly Mission employees -- Earth Day 2011 is now the moment to celebrate its one-year anniversary. On the Embassy Facebook page, simultaneous messages of “Happy Earth Day! Happy Birthday, Green Team!” marked the importance of pausing a moment to remember Planet Earth with our more than 42,370 fans.

Dressed in natural-resource greens and blues for the occasion, Ambassador Raul H. Yzaguirre, Deputy Chief of Mission Christopher A. Lambert, and Consul General Mary Sue Conaway continue to support the Green Team in their community-oriented drive to engage in Green Diplomacy. From its beginning in 2010 through today, the U.S. Mission-based environmental group has cleaned beaches, planted hundreds of trees in collaboration with the Ministry of the Environment, and recycled more than fifteen tons of paper and plastic. Promoting the idea that protecting the environment should be everyone's concern, the group also publishes weekly Green Tips on the U.S. Embassy Facebook page with suggestions about how to reduce waste, save energy, conserve resources and, in the process, save money. The Green Team is planning its second annual Green 5K Run/Walk and Environment Fair, to be held before the end of the year. Two of the team's mantras have gained them a favorable following both within and outside the Mission, as well as in the media: First, "the efforts by each one of us -- Dominicans and Americans together -- matter.” The second, just as important, is: "What you do at home to take care of the environment can have a ripple effect on neighbors, the neighborhood and, eventually, on the planet."

As one Facebook fan commented, “We hope to follow your example and … learn from your significant commitment to maintaining our Earth healthy.”



New Mexico, USA
April 25, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

Hi Judith,

Here's proof folks are starting to take note of the makeover of embassies' operational footprint.


Trends being what they are, just maybe I'll live long enough to see the sod rolled out for dignitaries to give their little tootsies some wiggle room on their way into negotiations, instead of the red carpet treatment.

Now if folks still "like" this idea...(chuckle)...maybe they'll indulge my thinking that the next world leader with a sense of humor visiting the Whitehouse might be used as a test subject?

Makes "going Green" a formal affair...barefooting it into the Oval office.

If the thought is entertaining, just imagine the diplomatic repurcussions of making it reality.

I would think the "art of the possible" would be placed at a new level of engagement.




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