After seven months of hard work, we finally received our Green Business Certification last week!

The City of Santa Cruz Public Works Department—a partner in the Monterey Bay Area Green Business Program—awarded us with the certificate, after we met program criteria for conserving resources, preventing pollution and minimizing waste. The certification was incentivized through a partnership with Community Foundation Santa Cruz County‘s “Go Green” program for nonprofits.

SOS Green Biz awardIn order to be certified, we created a complete environmental program for greening our office space.

Here are a few more examples taken directly from our Plastics Pledge and Event Policy:

  • Our staff, interns, volunteers and donors (of materials/equipment) will make all possible efforts to avoid common plastic slip-ups (like plastic bags, plastic straws, zip ties, plastic food packaging, etc.) and use plastic alternatives (like cloth bags, reusable water bottles, glass or other reusable containers, etc.) in the office and at events.
  • We will ue reusable garden gloves and buckets as often as possible at beach cleanups.
  • We will purchase local, organic and sustainable food products for events
  • We will make every effort to manage our energy usage in the office, from turning off lights, computers and printers when not in use to wearing extra clothing layers in the cold months to reduce heating.
  • We will purchase environmentally preferable products (office supplies, cleaning supplies, etc.)
  • We will compost, recycle and reuse materials whenever possible.
  • We encourage the use of public transit, promote biking/walking to work and carpooling, and offer telecommuting options.

“Save Our Shores is proud to announce that we have been fortunate to work with our landlord, the Port District, to become a Green Business,” said Laura Kasa, SOS executive director.  “It would not have been possible without the cooperation of Harbor staff and our neighbors in this process.”

Together with the Coastal Watershed Council—which also received its Green Business Certification last week—5,489 kWh and 4,319 lbs. of CO2 will be saved.

There are currently 127 businesses that have been awarded the “Green Business” certificate by the City of Santa Cruz as part of the Monterey Bay Area Green Business Program. These businesses strive to be environmentally responsible by reducing waste, conserving water and energy, and using less toxic alternatives to traditionally used chemicals. The program assists businesses to go above and beyond environmental compliance by providing free technical assistance on environmental stewardship, and then recognizes and promotes their efforts to the community.

Learn more about the Santa Cruz Green Business Program or contact Green Business Coordinator Hannah Hodgson at (831) 212-5252.

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