El Monte Union Supports Clean Air Day, Earns Sustainable Trailblazer Award for Clean Mobility in Schools Project

El Monte Union High School District (EMUHSD) is marking Clean Air Day on Oct. 4 by celebrating the District’s essential actions that have earned it the Sustainable Trailblazer Award from the Southern California Regional Energy Network (SoCal REN), acknowledging the District’s sustainability efforts, notably its groundbreaking Clean Mobility in Schools Project.

SoCal REN, a leading organization dedicated to advancing sustainable energy practices in Southern California, bestows the Sustainable Trailblazer Award upon entities that demonstrate exceptional leadership and innovation in environmental sustainability. El Monte Union’s achievement highlights its unwavering commitment to fostering a greener and healthier future.

“We are immensely honored to receive the Sustainable Trailblazer Award from SoCal REN,” EMUHSD Facilities and Energy Manager Lena Luna said. “The Clean Mobility in Schools Project represents our commitment to environmental stewardship and serves as a shining example of the positive impact educational institutions can have on their communities and the environment.”

The District’s Clean Mobility in Schools Project has been a cornerstone of its sustainability initiatives including the addition of 11 electric school buses, 11 electric utility maintenance carts, and four electric ride-share vehicles allowing the District to serve more students and plan for more holistic, active transportation to ensure safety and improve congestion.

The District also partnered with two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist Lalo Alcaraz and his team at Pocho Villa Productions to create the animated short, “Taking a Healthy Ride on the Green Side,” which focuses on how choosing green transportation options to get to school can improve community health.

Additionally, the Coalition for Clean Air and the Los Angeles County Office of Education recognized El Monte Union for being a clean-air hero in its community during an event on Sept. 28 in celebration of Clean Air Day.

“Thank you to the Southern California Regional Energy Network for their recognition of our District’s dedication and efforts toward clean energy,” Superintendent Dr. Edward Zuniga said. “Not only are we working towards reducing El Monte Union’s carbon footprint but we are also creating a healthier and more friendly environment for our students and the broader community.”

El Monte Union encourages community members and organizations to come together and show their support for clean air by taking action to improve and protect public health every day. One action, such as taking public transit, carpooling, and transitioning to clean mobility use can make a significant impact.

The Clean Mobility in Schools Pilot Project is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment – particularly in disadvantaged communities. For more information, visit emuhsdmobility.com.

El Monte Union’s Facilities and Energy Manager Lena Luna discusses the District’s Clean Mobility in Schools Project during a Clean Air Day press event on Sept. 28.

South El Monte High School’s Environment to Climate Action club students engage with school leaders and Coalition for Clean Air members emphasizing the critical significance of environmental care and protection during a Clean Air Day celebration event on Sept. 28.