Press Release - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Finalists Announced for 2024 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership

| July 01, 2024

Cambridge, MA – July 1, 2024 – The Environment and Natural Resources Program at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs is proud to announce the five finalists for the 2024 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership. The Roy Award, presented every two years since 2003, honors an outstanding cross-sector partnership project that enhances environmental quality through novel and innovative approaches.

“This year’s finalists exemplify the creativity, flexibility, and commitment required to address daunting environmental, resource management, and public health challenges,” said Henry Lee, Director of the Environment and Natural Resources Program. “We applaud their efforts to provide tangible benefits for people and the environment, as well as replicable models for transferring those benefits to others around the globe.”

The finalist selection is based on criteria assessing the partnerships’ innovation, effectiveness, significance, and transferability. The selection committee will choose one winner later this summer and the award will be presented at a ceremony at Harvard Kennedy School in the fall.

2024 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership Finalists

Climate Adaptation Interventions Focused on Climate Resilient Agriculture and Research

BRAC, Department of Agricultural Extension of Government of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Agricultural University, Hajee Mohammad Danesh Science and Technology University, and Gram Unnayan Karma

Established in 2023, this multi-stakeholder effort led by the BRAC Bank aims to mitigate the impacts of climate change on agriculture in Bangladesh. With an investment of BDT 189 million (USD 2 million), the project supports farmers in climate-vulnerable areas through partnerships across the academic, private sector and government spheres in Bangladesh. Key components of this partnership include Climate Adaptation Clinics to enhance agricultural productivity and resilience, the establishment of advanced genomic research facilities, and capacity-building programs for farmers. These initiatives aim to strengthen the socioeconomic conditions of grassroots farmers, promote sustainable agricultural practices, and improve overall climate resilience in southern Bangladesh regions including Patuakhali, Satkhira, Khulna, Barguna, and Bogura.

Share the Sun - Public, Private, and Community Partnerships Driving Low-Income Solar Access in Philadelphia

Philadelphia Green Capital Corp., Philadelphia Energy Authority, City of Philadelphia's Office of Sustainability - Municipal Energy  

The Share the Sun initiative, led by Philadelphia Green Capital Corp., aims to increase solar energy access for low- and moderate-income households in Philadelphia. Launched in 2021, the program leverages partnerships with the Philadelphia Energy Authority, the City of Philadelphia, and local solar installers to provide affordable solar solutions. By using donated Solar Renewable Energy Credits, the initiative generates revenue to subsidize solar installations, reducing energy costs and enhancing energy security. The program has funded solar access for fifty-five low-income homes and raised $81,600 in donations. Share the Sun also supports workforce development through training programs like Bright Solar Futures, which prepares high school students and young adults for careers in the clean energy sector, and is proud to contribute to Philadelphia's climate action goals.

ChemFORWARD – New Models for Industry Collaboration

ChemFORWARD partners with companies including Apple, Google, IBM, Amazon, HP, Intel, Sonos and Microsoft through its Electronics Safer Chemistry Collaborative, and companies including Ulta Beauty, Sephora, Credo, Honest Co., Beauty Counter, Dow, Inolex, and the Environmental Defense Fund through its Know Better, Do Better Collaborative. This application focuses on the partnership between ChemFORWARD and Apple.

ChemFORWARD is a non-profit, cross-sectoral initiative whose mission is to eliminate chemicals of concern, avoid regrettable substitutions, and find safer chemical alternatives for industry supply chains. ChemFORWARD’s data-sharing model aims to increase the quality and accessibility of chemical hazard information so that companies can make better decisions early in their design processes, with the goal of transitioning supply chains to safer chemistry. Using data analytics and a shared data repository, ChemFORWARD assists companies in measurable progress toward safer chemistry, while changing the way that chemical hazard data is created, maintained, interpreted, accessed, and financed. By 2030, ChemFORWARD aims to embed safer chemistry tools and metrics in six consumer facing supply chains.

WIPO GREEN – Climate-Smart Agriculture in Latin America

The United Nations’ WIPO Green, ANAGEA, Brazil’s National Institute of Industrial Property, Chile’s National Institute of Industrial Property, Argentina’s National Institute of Industrial Property, Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign and Cultural Affairs, Brazil's Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA), Wines of Chile

WIPO GREEN aims to leverage innovative new technologies available in various regions across the world and foster tangible connections between entities seeking green solutions and potential technology providers. In Latin America, WIPO GREEN has identified 17 technology seekers, 31 needs, and 65 solutions. WIPO GREEN and its country partners have delved into local challenges and identified important green opportunities, including opportunities for intensified crop rotation, soil re-carbonization, carbon sequestration, zero-till agriculture, and forest management.

Clean Air Minnesota

Environmental Initiative, 3M, American Lung Association in Minnesota, Barr Engineering, City of Minneapolis, Flint Hills Resources, Minnesota Chamber of Commerce, Minnesota Department of Health, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

Clean Air Minnesota is a diverse coalition of leaders from business, government, health, communities, and nonprofits that aims to enhance the air quality of Minnesota by reducing emissions of and exposure to air pollutants. Led by the nonprofit organization Environmental Initiative, partners voluntarily collaborate to reduce fine particulate matter and ground-level ozone with a focus on smaller, unregulated sources like vehicles, small businesses, and wood smoke. The coalition prioritizes emission-reduction strategies, secures funding, implements projects, and tracks outcomes relating to air quality in Minnesota. Its flagship project, Project Green Fleet (PGF), has raised over $15 million, to retrofit, upgrade, or replace more than 4,700 diesel vehicles in five states, and to reduce fine particulate matter by 36 tons annually. From 2021 to 2023, other Clean Air Minnesota projects working with small businesses, mobile sources, and wood smoke emissions reduction efforts have reduced 81 tons of volatile organic compounds and 23 tons of NOx.

About the Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership

The Roy family has been a longtime supporter of the development of cross-sector partnerships to meet social and environmental goals. The Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership provides positive incentives for governments, companies, and organizations worldwide to push the boundaries of creativity and take risks that result in significant changes that benefit the environment.

This year marks the eleventh time that the Harvard Kennedy School has bestowed the award. The 2022 award recognized ColdHubs Limited for reducing post-harvest losses for smallholder farmers across rural Nigeria through the use of solar-powered walk-in cold storage rooms.

For Media Inquiries:

Elizabeth Hanlon

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:Finalists Announced for 2024 Roy Family Award for Environmental Partnership.” Press Release, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School, July 1, 2024.

The Author


Henry Lee