December 2019 & January 2020
It's estimated that Americans generate an extra million tons of waste in December. Every ounce of material that we can save is a gift to the planet. When it comes to giving this year, here are six simple things you can do, to do your part:

  1. Rejoice in reuse: Shop this year at antique stores, thrift shops, and other secondhand retail outlets, for great deals on thoughtful, unique holiday gifts that also reduce your footprint in the process!
  2. Shop local, shop green: The holidays are a great way to help sustain the local economy. Check out local craft fairs, family-owned businesses, and local Certified Green Businesses.
  3. Give small: Gift certificates are great options, and they only require minimal wrapping, if any. The recipient can also purchase something they want, which is less likely to go to waste.
  4. Give the gift of giving: For loved ones with favorite charities, consider making donations in their names.
  5. Give your gift (or your time): Are you skilled at a certain art, craft, or sport? Whatever gift you have, what a wonderful gift to give! If you bowl, give a night of bowling and a free lesson. If you paint, give a painting lesson. If you bake, give a personalized cake. Offer a free night of babysitting. Take dinner to a busy friend. However you like to spend it, a little bit of your time can be an invaluable gift to the ones you love.
  6. Go sustainable: Whatever you give, ditch the metallic and glossy wrapping paper. Newspaper, grocery bags, and other recycled paper are quaint wrapping materials that make make perfect sense. Also, whenever possible, add texture and character to gifts and wrapping by making them from organic cotton, hemp fibers, renewable materials and recycled content. This holiday season, think of giving so that everyone receives.
Featured Video: Shop Local and Shop Green
Environmental Program Updates
Green Business
Are you interested in becoming a City of Ventura Certified Green Business, but afraid that you’ll have to shell out big bucks to upgrade your facilities? Fear no more!
The California Green Business Network (CAGBN), in partnership with the California Environmental Protection Agency, has rebates available to assist businesses with updates and upgrades that are required to become a Certified Green Business. Up to $500 per business is available on first-come first-served basis, until the available funds are spent.
With a $500 rebate, increased visibility through free marketing opportunities like our Google AdWords campaign and our Shop Green app, and increased consumer interest in supporting green businesses, the business case for reducing your environmental impact has never been stronger. For more information, contact
Lars Davenport at (805) 652-4595.  
Green Schools
Meet Robyn (L) and Stephanie (R)!

If you've witnessed a Greens Schools presentation this fall, you may recognize Robyn and/or Stephanie . Previously, Robyn was an elementary school teacher, and Stephanie was an environmental educator. Both recently joined our team to deliver our Green Schools presentations, which reach about 7,000 elementary students per year. All presentations include hands-on activities to teach our youngest residents about a range of environmental topics from marine pollution in kindergarten to performing a waste audit in 5th grade. Additionally, both Robyn and Stephanie will help support recycling, composting, and waste reduction efforts on campus.

Learn more about our Green Schools Program and what some local schools did to win the Keep California Beautiful Challenge last year.
Food Waste
There are big changes ahead in the organic waste recycling world!

The State of California will soon be requiring residents and businesses to recycle all organic waste including food waste! Though changes aren’t set to affect residents for another couple of years, you can take a look at what’s ahead HERE .

In the meantime, let's all try to reduce our food was te, which accounts for about 17-18% of total landfill disposal ! Check out these helpful Tools & Tips from Save The Food to get started.
Recycle Coach Tip
What should you do with your Christmas tree when you're done celebrating the holidays?

First, remove all lights and decorations from the tree, and save them for next year. Then, chop your tree into 4-foot sections, and place it in your tan yard waste barrel to be collected on your regularly scheduled pickup day. Flocked trees are accepted too, but no artificial trees please. Collected trees will be turned into mulch, which will benefit farmlands, orchards, and gardens.

Learn more about what to do with your Holiday Waste or download the Recycle Coach App !
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