Gold Star Requirements
Achieve at least two of the following to get the gold:
- Take away containers are not plastic (aluminum, fiber, bagasse, etc)
- No plastic cutlery is provided or provided by request only
- Provide environmental education for staff and/or customers.
- Recycles or diverts at least one waste stream
- Water fixtures are high efficiency (e.g. Watersense)
- Implemented energy efficiency practices
- Install energy efficient fixtures and appliances (e.g. EnergyStar)
- Reduce light pollution from outdoor lighting.
- All seafood is a Monterey Bay Seafood watch "best choice" or "good alternative."
- Put strategies in place to reduce food waste.
Contact the Sustainability Manager at 561-393-7997 or [email protected] for more information.
Provide environmental education to staff and/or customers.
Many of the practices on this list have as much to do with changing behavior as it does changing products used. Most people want to do the right thing including the most environmentally beneficial thing, but to do that they must understand what it is and why. Staff may more easily accept changes in their habits if they understand why those changes are important and similarly for customers. Creating an understanding of how the actions of your staff and customers contributed to the health and environmental quality of the coastal ecosystems is important. For staff, this education may come in the form of a formal training or it could be less formal but consistent reminders at the beginning of shifts. Posting reminders in key locations may also be a good tactic. For customers, posters, table tents, and even training staff to tell customers that the restaurant has joined Coastal Connection (and why) would spread the message.
Recycle or divert one waste stream
Recycling reduces the demand to extract raw materials as well as reduced the energy, water, and carbon intensity of the materials. Restaurants produce waste which is recyclable, such as cans and bottles, but not all recycle on site. Recycling helps to protect coastal environments by reducing the amount of new plastics which could contribute to marine debris and reducing emission related to resource extraction. Work with one of the City's haulers to establish your collection and work with staff to develop appropriate collection within the business.
- The City of Boca Raton and Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County's Recycle Right (myboca.us/689/Recycling) program.
- The City of Boca Raton's Solid Waste Franchise Information (myboca.us).
- EPA's Sustainable Management of Food: Reducing the Impact of Wasted Food by Feeding the Soil and Composting (EPA.gov)
Institute water and energy conservation efforts.
Water and energy conservation efforts can come in many forms. Your restaurant may choose to install WaterSense fixtures in the restrooms and sinks, for example. Choosing low flow sprayers and Energy Star or Water Sense appliances can also reduce water and energy use. Switch light fixtures to LED. Other initiatives could include offering glasses of water only by request or reducing the size of your water glasses or maintaining doors closed while the A/C is running, utilizing daylight and switching off electric lights, or other innovative practices.
- The City of Boca Raton's Utility Services Department.
- The U.S. EPA's WaterSense(epa.gov/watersense) program.
- South Florida Water Management District's Water Conservation Publications (sfwmd.gov).
- The U.S. EPA's EnergyStarprogram.