When a visiting Wisconsin senator was inspired by the Santa Barbara oil spill in 1969, something sparked. The following year, the first Earth Day was celebrated. Since students also inspired this movement, a day between spring break and finals was chosen. Now, April 22 is Earth Day across the globe.
As part of that spirit, San Francisco has the goal of zero waste by 2020. The Ferry Building shares that goal and aspires to inspire others. The wonderful merchants here in the building are helping with this inspiration. Here are a few examples we are very proud of:
*Frog Hollow Farms collects their coffee grounds from their daily beverages, as well as from both Blue Bottle Coffee locations in the building, to take to their farm. Soil in the western climate greatly benefits from coffee grounds for they are slightly acidic, have phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, and copper, and release nitrogen as they degrade. It’s no wonder Frog Hollow Farms grows such delicious fruit!
*Stonehouse Olive Oil has a refill policy, where you can bring in your bottle, and they can fill it right there! Reusing glass saves in many ways. Availability of the oils changes throughout the year, we recommend calling the shop at 415-765-0405 to find out what they have. They also have their popular House Blend Olive Oil bulk in a 10 liter bag in a box, as well as a new 3 liter bag in a box. This method keeps light and air away from the oil, helping it remain fresh and delicious longer.
*Far West Fungi makes it a point to only use organic untreated redwood lumber waste for their substrate, the base from where the mycelium grow, out of which grows the mushrooms. That base can be anything, but whatever it is will of course affect the mushrooms. And as you can imagine, this substrate makes great compost. After they’re no longer producing mushrooms, these substrate are placed in a large pile on their farm in Moss Landing, ready for use. If you want some for your own garden, call their shop at 415-989-9090 to find out more!
*Miette uses plastic reusable containers to deliver their delicious treats to their store, instead of one-use cardboard.
*CUESA and their farmers markets are champions of sustainability. CUESA, which stands for Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture, educates San Franciscans and visitors on the ways to participate in sustainability. One of the ways they do that is by the signage on their waste receptacles.
They’ve inspired our indoor receptacles.
And for our outdoor receptacles, we are proud to be using solar powered Big Belly, a new system that saves time and space.
And in addition to all that:
- We have compost and recycling on site, allowing 70% of our waste to be diverted from landfill.
- We have trainings for the house staff of restaurants and merchants lead by Recology.
- To conserve water, we have low flow toilets, using less than 1.6 gallon per flush.
- In our restrooms, we don’t have paper towels, but hand dryers instead.
- The toilet paper we use in the building is 75% post-consumer waste.
- The beautiful arch lights in our Nave are all the energy-efficient LED.
- We use green cleaning products in the building, which have been said to lessen pollution.
- We have quarterly e-cycling events here, reducing dangerous electronic waste getting into the landfill.
- We have a contemporary mechanical system that includes a 100 percent outside air option, taking full advantage of San Francisco’s temperate climate for the building’s ventilation.
- Daylight streams through the building’s skylight, animating the vast Nave, reducing reliance on artificial lighting.