Catherine Pugh presented two Baltimore City high school seniors medals for receiving the Brower Youth Award Wednesday.
Mercedes Thompson and Claire Wayner are co-founders of Baltimore Beyond Plastic, a youth-led action-oriented organization that aims to reduce plastic pollution in the city.
The girls received the award in October, they are two of six awardees in North America.
Thompson and Wayner were inspired to create Baltimore Beyond Plastic after learning about the public health impacts that are a result of plastic pollution.
"As students, we wanted to stand up for our city and our state’s environment and for our Chesapeake Bay. And make a difference by phasing out Styrofoam," said Wayner.
In 2016 the girls initiated a campaign to ban Styrofoam throughout the state, and are now pushing for bans on both Styrofoam and plastic bags in Baltimore.