Updated July 30 at 2:30pm

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ENVIRONMENT

Four Rhode Islanders, Kent Hospital honored by EPA

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BOSTON – Four Rhode Islanders and Kent Hospital were honored by the Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday as the federal watchdog agency presented its 2012 Environmental Merit Awards.

Awarded by the EPA since 1970, the merit awards honor individuals and groups who show ingenuity and commitment in efforts to preserve the region’s environment. This year, the EPA received nearly 100 nominations from across New England.

Awards are presented to individuals and businesses – including professional organizations as well as communities and academia or nonprofit organizations.

The EPA also presents a Lifetime Achievement Award for individuals.

Nancy L. Langrall, senior policy adviser for U.S. Sen. Jack Reed, and Peter Lord, long-time environmental reporter for The Providence Journal, were both honored with the EPA’s Lifetime Achievement Environmental Merit Award.

As policy adviser for Reed, Langrall “made environmental affairs a top priority in the Senator’s Office,” according to the EPA release.

Lord, who died earlier this year, was awarded the honor posthumously. “Lord illuminated not only local concerns, but also gave context to national and international environmental topics that affect our lives,” said the release.

Lord had covered the environmental beat for the Journal since 1981.

Greg Gerritt of the Environmental Council of Rhode Island and John Torgan, director of The Nature Conservancy won Individual Environmental Merit Award for their environmental activism in the Ocean State.

Warwick-based Kent Hospital was awarded the Business, Industry, Trade or Professional Environmental Merit Award for its sustainable landscaping.

"Congratulations to all of our 2012 Environmental Merit Award recipients. These awards are close to my heart because they acknowledge the importance of environmental stewardship," said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office.

“As stewards, all of these recipients are making real and lasting differences in communities across our beautiful region,” Spalding continued. “Whether it's finding innovative ways to safeguard our water resources or conserving the energy our communities use each day, each individual has advanced our mission to protect human health and the environment."

For the full list of Merit Award winners, visit: epa.gov.

EPA, ENVIRONMENT, ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY, RHODE ISLAND, KENT HOSPITAL, HOSPITAL, HEALTH CARE, ENVIRONMENTAL MERIT AWARDS, NANCY LANGRALL, JACK REED, PETER LORD, GREG GERRITT, JOHN TORGAN

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