Environment Newsfeed

Green Bellevue's June Program

posted Jun 11, 2017, 8:05 AM by Brittany Dabestani

Special guest Tony Palmer will present on beneficial insects like
pollinators and soil enhancers that are vital to our environment!

THIS SUNDAY, June 11, 1:30-3:0

Get buggy with Green Bellevue at our June Monthly Meeting! Tony Palmer, a longtime Fontenelle Forest volunteer, will be presenting on the Insects of Fontenelle Forest and findings from the Save the Oaks Insect Survey done in 2016. Insects are vital to the forest ecosystem. They help pollinate plants, spread seeds, break down plant and animal materials, convert nutrients, decompose wood, create habitat, and serve as an important part of the food chain. Come find out about our diverse, local insect populations!

Tony hails from Eastern Ohio where he grew up exploring the wonders of nature in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. He moved to Nebraska to attend Dana College where he majored in Biology and German. Tony worked for seven years at the Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium’s Butterfly and Insect Pavilion. During that time he obtained a Master’s of Science in Entomology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, focusing on the captive rearing of the Federally Endangered Salt Creek Tiger Beetle for his thesis. Tony and his wife moved to Tucson, Arizona after he graduated from UNL. He now works as the Backcountry Ranger at Saguaro National Park.

Green Bellevue events are free and open to the public. Bring a friend!

The meeting takes place in the Lower Level Conference Room A. When you enter the main doors, go down the stairs to your left, make a u-turn, and the meeting room is down the hall on your left.


Less Waste to the Landfill at Foodstock

posted Jun 1, 2017, 5:07 AM by Ruth Richter   [ updated Jun 1, 2017, 10:32 AM ]

Green Bellevue announced today that a comprehensive plan to keep landfill waste to a minimum at the city's first Foodstock event has been formed.  Working with organizer, Garrett Sims, the Bellevue Chamber of Commerce, the City of Bellevue and the region's materials recovery facility, Firstar Fiber and Papillion Sanitation there is a plan to capture not only the recyclables such as cans and plastic bottles, but the "Hefty Energy Bag" items will also be diverted from the trash.

On April 21 the city of Bellevue announced it was working to become "the first city in the country to include the Hefty Energy Bag program into their city-wide solid waste contract."  The article went on to state that "the program is currently being tested successfully in their solid waste pay-as-you-throw pilot program area, as well as throughout the Bellevue and Omaha area. Leaders in Bellevue have recognized this ground-breaking program as an opportunity to further their sustainability efforts to control their waste impact on local landfills."  Click here for details about the Hefty Energy Bag program

Waste Expected at the Event

There are waste stations planned that will collect three "categories" of waste that is expected to be produced at an event like this.  

Recycling:  one container will be a marked recycling toter to collect bottles and cans and cardboard and anything else that can be recycled. 

Items for Energy Bag:  an energy bag collection container, which is recognizable by the orange liner, will collect the following items:
Straws and plastic lids from drinks
Plastic Utensils
Styrofoam packaging - that should be scrapped free of food materials
Plastic wrapping 
Plastic bags
Potato chip bags

Trash: food waste, cardboard packaging that has grease/food, wax paper wrapping with food, drink cups

The Public's Assistance is Needed
Firstar Fiber will bring the Hefty-branded Recycling truck to the event to capture all recycling and energy bag waste.  There will be high school and Green Bellevue volunteers on hand to set up the waste stations and empty contents.  However, this will only work with a concerted effort to dispose of the waste properly by each attendee.  

"We are proud to kick the summer off the Foodstock event, and we are even prouder now that Green Bellevue has stepped in to make sure that the waste created from the event is properly disposed of," said Garrett Sims, Foodstock organizer. 

May Meeting: Sustainable Landscaping with Kyle Johnson

posted May 15, 2017, 3:30 PM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated May 21, 2017, 6:23 PM ]

Sunday, May 21, 1:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Nebraska Medicine - Bellevue

Lower Level Conference Room A

Learn some of the best practices for green landscaping. 

Create green spaces that are functional, beneficial and attractive, and find creative and effective strategies to care for them naturally, safely and efficiently. Sustainable landscaping is the application of sound economic principles and eco-friendly ideas to create healthy, regenerative landscapes that are economically and ecologically viable. Hear from presenter Kyle Johnson, Joslyn Art Museum's Landscape Maintenance Technician, to learn how to give back to the environment as you design and plan your outdoor space. 

About the Presenter:  Kyle grew up on a farm in eastern Nebraska which is where his love for nature and the outdoors began. He studied horticulture at Metropolitan Community College and is currently a part-time undergraduate student at UNL, pursuing his goal of eventually teaching in the horticulture field. Working consistently in the landscaping field for the last 18 years, Kyle has gained knowledge and experience in subjects such as holistic and sustainable property management, tree care, organic lawn care, hardscape installation, bird and wildlife habitat, pollinator gardens, urban use of native plants, rain gardens and stormwater utilization, and more. Collecting and growing native milkweed is also a particular interest of Kyle’s. Credentials include certifications as a NNLA Nebraska Certified Nursery Professional and ISA Certified Arborist. Kyle is also a board member with the Nebraska Wildlife Federation and Urban Bird & Nature Alliance, as well as being an Affiliate Site Curator with the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum. He has been employed full-time as caretaker for the sculpture gardens at Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, NE, for the last 6 years.


Green Bellevue events are free and open to the public. Bring a friend!

Share and join this event on Facebook!

The meeting takes place in the Lower Level Conference Room A. When you enter the main doors, go down the stairs to your left, make a u-turn, and the meeting room is down the hall on your left.

SAVE THE DATE!  Our next Monthly Meeting will be on June 11th from 1:30-3pm. Join us
  to hear all about "Insects" with presenter Tony Palmer.

5k Recycle Run Results

posted May 15, 2017, 11:58 AM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated May 15, 2017, 3:21 PM ]

The Sarpy County Earth Day 5k Recycle Run took place on April 30, 2017. Click here for the timed results. 

Thanks to all who participated!

Athletic Event Sponsors:
Papillion Sanitation and Fitssentials

Special Thank You to:
Craig Christians, Bellevue Police Department, and our volunteers!


posted Apr 17, 2017, 9:03 AM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated Apr 17, 2017, 9:03 AM ]


An Arbor Day Proclamation was read by the Mayor at the Bellevue City Council meeting on April 10th. Green Bellevue will also hold Arbor Day ceremonies with tree plantings at area schools. Plant your own trees and note that on our City's Cleanup page to enter for a prize!

Join Green Bellevue and the Bellevue Police Department for the Great American CleanUp by Keep America Beautiful! We are encouraging individuals, families, schools, businesses and organizations to organize cleanup teams and events between now and May 31. Details here!

In addition to picking up litter, you can plant flowers, bushes, trees or join the efforts to beautify public spaces!
Drawings and prizes awarded.

4/8 Volunteer Faire & 4/9 Volunteer Meeting

posted Apr 5, 2017, 8:11 AM by Brittany Dabestani


1:30pm - 3pm

Nebraska Medicine-Bellevue

25th & HWY 370, Lower Level - Conference Room A
Be a part of Sarpy County's Earth Day on April 30 and help us make this the best eco-celebration around! The success of this event relies on the energy and support of our volunteers and environmentally-minded citizens. Attend a public meeting to meet the planning committee, review the schedule, help us with final preparations, and learn about available volunteer opportunities. Sign up for a shift and invite your friends to join you! Volunteers do everything from assisting with vendor check-in and set up, registering athletes for the 5k and MixxedFit/Zumba, greeting attendees, getting out signage, and helping with the youth activities.

You can start helping today by sharing Sarpy County Earth Day with your friends on

If you cannot attend this meeting but want to volunteer, you can sign up online!

Or come see us at the Volunteer Faire coming up this Saturday!

March Program: Solar Powering Your Home

posted Mar 5, 2017, 5:52 PM by Brittany Dabestani

Learn how to install solar panels step-by-step

Presenters: David Holtzclaw and Don Preister

SUNDAY, MARCH 12, 1:30 - 3pm


Solar energy is finally getting its day in the sun, and an increasing number of residents are installing solar panels on their homes as a way to lower energy bills and reduce carbon footprints. If you are considering a solar install – or just want to better understand the steps involved – come to Green Bellevue's March program and hear how it's done!

David Holtzclaw, Energy Consultant and Owner of Transduction Technologies, will outline the process of installing residential (and small business) solar generators, describing the steps and considerations involved.  Don Preister, Green Bellevue President and Councilman, will then walk through his own experience of installing a home solar system this past year. The presentation will be followed by a Q&A. Members of Nebraskans for Solar will be in attendance to add to the conversation and serve as resources.


Join us in Conference Room A at Nebraska Medicine Bellevue. You can park in the visitor parking lot and enter through the main door. Go down the stairs, make a "u-turn" and Conference Room A is down the hall on your left.

Diverting What We Can from the Landfill - Bellevue's current and future plans

posted Jan 23, 2017, 12:34 PM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated Feb 11, 2017, 12:03 PM ]

Sunday, February 12
1:30 - 3:00 p.m.

Nebraska Medicine - Bellevue
2500 Bellevue Medical Center Dr.
Lower Level, Conference Room A

Hear an update on Bellevue's recycling program from Epiphany Ramos, City of Bellevue Wastewater Operations Manager and Green Bellevue Board Member. Topics for discussion will include:
  • the Zero Waste pilot;
  • how to enhance recycling services to Bellevue;
  • options for yard waste;
  • the new Energy Bag program;
  • the glass ban, collection sites, and the public response; and
  • how consumerism impacts our waste stream.
It will be an information-filled meeting with Q&A. Green Bellevue meetings are free and open to the public. We hope to see you there!


RESCHEDULED! Sarpy County Earth Day Planning Kickoff

posted Dec 21, 2016, 12:38 PM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated Jan 13, 2017, 12:13 PM ]

PLEASE NOTE: Due to inclement weather forecast for Sunday, January 15, we have rescheduled this event for the following week on Sunday, January 22. Same time and place. Stay safe, everyone!

Sunday, January 22, 1:30 - 3:00 PM

Nebraska Medicine - Bellevue

Join Green Bellevue in planning Sarpy County's 8th annual Earth Day celebration on April 30, 2017

Come see a visual recap of last year's Earth Day events and hear about plans for this year's celebration. The Earth Day Planning Committee has completed some early groundwork and we are ready to meet with the public for a facilitated planning session, including breakout groups. Everyone is invited to help with the preparations, and we have several leadership roles open!

We are currently seeking individuals to help head the following sub-committees:
  • YOUTH ACTIVITIES CO-CHAIR - Work as a team to develop and coordinate this year's youth activities. We have a lot of past ideas to pull from, including: pollinator planting, recycling relay races, animal rescues, kite making, story telling, a book giveaway, and more.
  • ELECTRIC & HYBRID VEHICLE SHOWCASE COORDINATOR - Contact area dealerships to help set up an informative auto showcase featuring the newest models and different modes of low emission vehicle technology.
  • PROCLAMATIONS COORDINATOR - We have all the information neccessary! Contact the cities of Bellevue, Gretna, La Vista, Papillion and Springfield to have each mayor sign an Earth Day Proclamation. Coordinate volunteers to attend the City Council meetings and read the proclamations to the public.
  • SIGNAGE & BANNERS - Help spread the word by updating and placing signs and banners around town and collecting materials afterwards for future use.
There are plenty more volunteer opportunities available. Come meet the team and tell us how you'd like to help. Earth Day volunteers, exhibitors, sponsors and attendees are all welcome!

We want to hear your ideas on how to make this event even better! If you can't make the meeting, share your thoughts with us by emailing Brittany Dabestani at brittanyd@greenbellevue.org.

The eighth annual Sarpy County Earth Day celebration will be held at the BPS Lied Activity Center and will feature many aspects of environmental awareness and education. Attendees can learn how to green their home and community, become acquainted with local businesses and organizations utilizing environmentally friendly practices, and participate in a fun 5k run or 1-mile walk. This year's event will have a special focus on clean energy, recycling and planting trees!


Sarpy County's Earth Day celebration is an excellent way to showcase your company or organization's green practices!

Interested in becoming a sponsor?
Contact Ruth Richter at ruthr@greenbellevue.org.

Interested in being an exhibitor?
Contact Brittany Dabestani at brittanyd@greenbellevue.org.

Season's Greetings from Green Bellevue!

posted Dec 21, 2016, 12:02 PM by Brittany Dabestani   [ updated Dec 21, 2016, 12:15 PM ]

During this holiday season we reflect on how far we have come since our inception seven years ago. We are thankful for all of the volunteers, members and partners who have supported us over the years and who have contributed to our success. We are proud to say that Bellevue has become a regional leader in recycling with Green Bellevue and the City working together to educate the pubic and improve recycling options. Green Bellevue members have also made large strides in protecting our pollinators (specifically by planting milkweed for monarchs) and taking action to control invasive species (tree of heaven, emerald ash borer, honeysuckle, and others). But, there is always more work to be done and we are already busy making plans for the coming year.

We remain dedicated to creating a more beautiful and environmentally-friendly community and to preserving the Earth for future generations.
To accomplish this, it's necessary as individuals, and as a community, to continue to learn and incorporate best practices for conservation and care of our resources. For 2017, Green Bellevue volunteers are planning to continue monthly educational meetings and will host the Sarpy County Earth Day Expo on April 30th. We will be also be working to improve recycling in the Bellevue Public Schools; planting and maintaining community gardens; creating invasive species action plans; and focusing on clean energy, water conservation and sustainable agriculture.

Each one of us can make a difference. We look forward to another year of working together. We are Green Bellevue!

  Happy Holidays!


While you do your last minute holiday shopping ...
  • If you are shopping online, take advantage of AmazonSmile and select Green Bellevue as the charitable organization you would like to support. When you checkout, Amazon will automatically donate a portion of the purchase price to Green Bellevue at no extra cost to you. 
  • For the person who has everything –or doesn't need anything– consider donating to Green Bellevue in his or her name. It's the perfect gift! You can find more information here.

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