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The Tribune: SLO Chamber Presents Green Awards for Local Businesses

November 19, 2008

Tribune – Biz Buzz: SLO Chamber presents Green Awards for local businesses
— Melanie Cleveland

Business organization recognizes groups that have taken steps to be environmentally friendly

Six organizations have been honored with the first San Luis Obispo County Green Awards, as sponsored by the San Luis Obispo Chamber of Commerce. The awards recognize those who have taken exemplary steps to be “environmentally friendly,” including reducing pollution, conserving resources and improving water and air quality, according to a news release issued by the chamber. The winners were chosen from more than 50 nominations by judges representing the chamber, San Luis Obispo city and county agencies, and environmental groups.

They are:

Growing Grounds, an adult vocational program with the nonprofit Transitions Mental Health Association. It has installed solar panels for a well, uses a special irrigation system, and grows Mediterranean climate zone perennials;

Habitat for Humanity, an international nonprofit housing organization, for operating two county ReStores that collect and sell used building materials from the general public and contractors. The organization also installs solar panels and other energy-saving features in the homes they build;

Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes, a learning, research and development firm for children, for educating clients about environmentally responsible practices, converting to toxin-free cleaning supplies, and organizing the business to reduce fuel and paper consumption;

Meathead Movers, a company that uses biodiesel fuel, recycles cardboard, and installed skylights, among other energy-saving methods;

Poor Richards Press, a printing company, for purchasing energy-efficient equipment, encouraging employee car pooling, and recycling tons of paper;

Wolff Vineyards, a 125-acre vineyard in the Edna Valley for using a number of conservation techniques for water and air quality, using biodiesel fuel, creating a wildlife habitat, and participating in a pilot “Sustainability in Practice” program.

The lunch ceremony was a green event held at Congregation Beth David, a LEED-certified building, with free transportation from downtown San Luis Obispo provided by Ride-On. The keynote speech was delivered by Jim Dee, owner of the Palm Theatre, which became the country’s first solar-powered theater in 2004.

Co-sponsors of the Green Awards are: The county Air Pollution Control District; Environmental Center of SLO County; RideShare; Ride-On; Central Coast Clean Cities Coalition; Integrated Waste Management Authority; the county Agricultural Commission; and the city of San Luis Obispo.

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