In Santa Monica, being green is a way of life, or at least we like to think so. People brag about how sustainable they are, whether it’s driving an electric car, cutting beef out of their diets, installing low-flow toilets or ripping out lawns in favor of succulents. Some can be downright obnoxious about it.
So it’s only fitting that we host an annual pat-on-the back known as the Sustainable Quality Awards where local businesses are recognized for taking meaningful action in the battle to reduce our collective carbon footprint.
I’m proud to report that three Downtown Santa Monica businesses won the SQA Grand Prize — a clean sweep in the category. Their efforts are quite meaningful, given that two are in sectors that are traditionally blasted for being harsh on Mother Earth; hotels and restaurants.
Here’s a brief look at the winners and what they’ve done to help reduce emissions, save water and be better stewards of the environment.
- Locanda de Lago: Serving authentic, northern Italian cuisine for the past 24 years in Downtown Santa Monica, Lago uses local and organic ingredients from the Downtown Farmer’s Market; recycled paper for menus, register tape and toilet paper; energy efficient bulbs and motion sensor lights; water saving faucets and waterless urinals; and their fryer oil is recycled and turned into soap for local hotels. They also offer higher than average wages for employees.
- Capital Intelligence Associates: A full service financial planning and wealth management firm, CIA helps its clients invest in companies that are socially responsible and help create sustainable communities. Some employees drive electric cars to work and they installed more efficient lighting and use recycled paper.
- Shore Hotel: LEED Gold Certified, the Shore Hotel is an eco-conscious boutique hotel offering a rapid charging station for electric vehicle users. During construction they used wood from sustainable forests, low-flow water fixtures, native landscaping that reduces the need to water, a sophisticated building control system to monitor and adjust the buildings energy use, and 50 percent of construction waste was recycled or salvaged.
Share with us how you go green with the hashtag #DTSMgreen