The Commissioners of St. Mary’s County and the Commission on the Environment have announced the winners of the 4th annual St. Mary’s County Sustainability Awards. The awards recognize the outstanding efforts of students, restaurants, businesses, non-profits, and farms in the county for their environmental stewardship, resource conservation, innovative best practices, and pollution prevention efforts.

The two winners for the 2022 calendar year are the Southern Maryland Sierra Club and the Environmental Division, Department of Public Works, Naval Air Station Patuxent River (NAS Pax River).

The Southern Maryland Sierra Club continued their 1,000 Trees initiative by planting 162 native trees in local parks and sports complexes and 27 shrubs at Lexington Manor Passive Park in a 7,500 square foot Native Exhibition Garden. They also completed the buildout of 36 gardens at eight locations, providing vegetables to local food pantries and opportunities to teach the benefits of sustainable, local gardening.

The Environmental Division of NAS Pax River’s Public Works Department stabilized 960 linear feet of shoreline from further erosion by creating a living shoreline that offers protection and provides habitat for several aquatic organisms using structural and vegetative materials. Living shorelines have several benefits to aquatic organisms, including the Diamondback Terrapin, which have a large presence at NAS Pax River.

The winners were selected based on their outstanding demonstrated efforts to improve the environment and for initiatives and projects exceeding business norms and requirements.

For more information on the Commission on the Environment, please visit

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

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