The Santa Monica Pier Aquarium is a Certified Green Business
Heal the Bay’s Santa Monica Pier Aquarium last week became re-certified as a Santa Monica green business. The Aquarium first joined the program and became a certified green business about 2 1/2 years ago. The program is run by the combined efforts of City of Santa Monica agencies and business organizations and is designed to encourage companies to incorporate environmentally sound business practices into their everyday business. The Aquarium went through an extensive greening checklist to qualify for the program initially and just completed an inventory of green practices for the re- certification. The marine science education center passed inspections in three categories: energy efficiency, water use, and a general inspection of business practices.
Green business practices at the Aquarium are vast and varied; they range from the use of recycled materials to upgrade Aquarium exhibits to water conserving plumbing systems, to instituting a facility-wide use of eco-friendly cleaning agents and providing incentives for staff and volunteers to use alternative modes of transportation. “This is an educational space, and every surface is an opportunity to learn about the ocean and the environment,” said Aquarium director Vicki Wawerchak.
The city of Santa Monica’s Sustainability and the Environment Department, the Chamber of Commerce, Convention & Visitors Bureau and Sustainable Works operate the green business program. The official “Green Certified,” window decal alerts tourists, community members and other visitors that a business has qualified for special recognition as a green business. The certification must be renewed every two years.