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The Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA) is California's highest environmental honor. The program recognizes individuals, organizations, and businesses that have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made notable, voluntary contributions in conserving California's precious resources, protecting and enhancing our environment, building public-private partnerships, and strengthening the state's economy.

The annual GEELA program is administered by the California Environmental Protection Agency, in partnership with the Natural Resources Agency, the Department of Food and Agriculture, the State Transportation Agency, the Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency, the Government Operations Agency, the Labor Workforce and Development Agency, and the Health and Human Services Agency.

Who May Apply/Eligibility

The awards will be presented for voluntary achievements culminated in 2017. Competition is open to all California residents, businesses, non-profit organizations, professional and trade associations, communities, state and local government entities, tribes, and federal agencies operating in California. Projects are deemed ineligible if they are the result of mitigation, litigation, or required by legislation. Those who applied previously are welcome to apply again.


The deliberative process of the selection committee is confidential and all decisions are final subject to applicable California state law.  An application may be considered in a category different from that in which it was originally submitted.

In issuing these awards, we will recognize and publicly acknowledge the outstanding contributions by award recipients. By submitting an application, applicants grant CalEPA the full right to publicize their accomplishment and reproduce all or part of their application and supporting material on public websites, in social media and in press releases. We aim to increase your visibility and the visibility of GEELA. CalEPA will make every effort to notify the individual named in the application prior to publication.

For any questions regarding the application process, please contact geela@calepa.ca.gov.