This April, the U.S. Embassy in Kabul was recognized as a worldwide winner of the Greening Council’s Greening Diplomacy Initiative (GDI) Award for their recycling efforts in a critical-threat environment. DynCorp International currently provides waste management services under a task order on the Afghanistan Life Support Services (ALiSS) program, and has been leading the recycling efforts at the embassy.
The annual GDI Awards recognize posts or offices that innovate to reduce their environmental footprint. This award was presented to Embassy Kabul for remaining committed to reducing their environmental footprint despite facing a constant critical-threat security environment with limited infrastructure. The embassy’s recycling program recycled 364,000 pounds of waste in 2017. Local partners turned the recycled materials into items such as plastic furniture, toilet paper, and dishes. This partnership expands private sector-led economic growth and provides employment alternatives to those at risk of radicalization and violent extremist messaging.
The post also launched a campaign to discourage the use of bottled water, emphasizing that 100% of compound water is potable. Post’s Green Team and the ALiSS program issued water bottles and filters to 200 embassy personnel to help reduce bottled water usage.
About Greening Diplomacy Initiative
The Greening Diplomacy Initiative (GDI) was launched on April 22, 2009, to capture and disseminate grassroots sustainability efforts at the U.S. Department of State. GDI is the umbrella term for actions undertaken by personnel, posts, offices, and bureaus to improve the environmental performance and sustainability of the Department of State’s world-wide facilities and operations.
GDI is support by the Eco-Diplomacy Unit within the Innovation Directorate, which works to strengthen and disseminate tools and policies aimed at increasing operational efficiencies that reduce the Department’s environmental footprint and operational costs. The Department of State’s Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) provides strategic direction and oversight for all efforts under GDI.