The first Service to Sustainability Award was awarded in April 2011 to three people for provided outstanding leadership in protecting New York City's Drinking Water from the catastrophic threat of gas drilling and hydro-fracking within the protected watershed region.
Amy Goodman, founder of "Democracy Now!" is a leading news organization with a non-corporate cultural perspective, Ms. Goodman and the DN! staff are working hard to protect citizens’ constitutional rights. In doing this important work of the "fourth estate," her very early reporting on the hydro-fracking issue helped spark debate that resulted in the first ever state-wide moratorium on fracking in New York. Her continued reports about peak water, public health, and energy-related issues offers citizens around the world the accurate information required to make well-informed decisions. Her continuing interviews with independent journalists, experts, filmmaker Josh Fox and other local grass root organization leaders provided a critical counterpoint to the massive media campaign of multi-national corporations.
The life's work of Yoko Ono has been in the service of peace, which is being undermined because of our addiction to fossil fuel. As nations struggle to maintain the flow, wars and revolutions continue in the Middle East. Sustainable energy systems can not be developed while treasure and global resources are wasted on the battlefields. The “Lennon/Ono Grant for Peace” was given to Josh Fox for his film, “Gasland,” which reveals how destructive our addiction to fossil fuel is, and helped build important momentum for the historic work to protect New York City’s drinking water from the catastrophic risk of hydrofracking.
American Rivers is the leading protector of our rivers. Rebecca Wodder is a leader in addressing the impact of hydro-fracking and mountaintop removal upon our fragile river systems. Ms. Wodder, organization president until 2011, and American Rivers have generated highly important visibility about the catastrophic risk facing the watershed region, the source of drinking water for seventeen million people in New Jersey, New York City, and Philadelphia, by designating the Upper Delaware River the "#1 Most Endangered River in America."