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Greenwood chamber offers sustainability help

The Greenwood-Phinney Chamber of Commerce’s new Sustainability Committee is off to a great start – it received a $5,000 grant from the City of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development to launch a program to assist Greenwood and Phinney businesses in implementing sustainable practices.

That’s the chamber’s administrative assistant and sustainability committe chair, Ilsa Olsen, receiving the big check from Mayor Greg Nickels at the last chamber meeting.
The committee is starting to use that money to survey local businesses on what kind of sustainability help they might need: how to save money on utilities; establishing a buying co-op; business district identity and marketing; carbon footprint analysis of your business; how to access city rebates and funding for sustainable practices; and more.
At the last chamber meeting, Phinney Neighborhood Center’s Executive Director Ed Medeiros said the PNA is trying to conserve energy by not turning on the lights. “As long as there’s good outdoor light coming in through the windows we won’t turn the lights on,” Medeiros said.. The PNA is also looking into installing special light switches with sensors that physically won’t turn the lights on if there’s enough natural light coming in.
Mark Ball, one of the owners of Snoose Junction in Ballard and Greenwood, says its bicycle-only pizza delivery system saved 19,000 pounds of carbon dioxide from going into the air last year, as its delivery folks logged 34,000 miles rain or shine.
And Terry Fernsler, executive director of Washington Wilderness Coalition at 305 N. 83rd St., put it this way, “Sustainability equals profitability!”
For more information or to obtain a survey for your business, email Ilsa Olsen.