EEP_optional_sample1 - Non-Environmental Effects of the Bay...

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p 1 Non-Environmental Effects of the Bay Area Green Business Program Haley Jones Optional Term Paper EEP 101 May 9, 2005 Introduction The Bay Area Green Business Program is a voluntary environmental performance certification program that was started in 1996. Local governments, utilities, environmental agencies, and business representatives in the San Francisco Bay Area coordinate the program, which offers interested businesses a framework for improving their environmental performance to go above and beyond mandatory industry regulations. The Bay Area Green Business Program (Program) has certified over 475 businesses and public agencies across seven different counties in the Bay Area. Potential benefits of the green business certification include advertising opportunities, reduced operating costs, assistance with coming into compliance with mandatory industry regulations and developing a positive relationships with regulators. The certification standards are updated on a continuous rolling basis so as to address the most recent and important environmental problems associated with each business sector. The green business standards include four areas of focus: good housekeeping and pollution prevention, solid waste reduction, energy savings, and water savings. The certification process is voluntary and does not involve any fees. The Program does not usually seek out businesses to certify. Instead, an interested business owner must contact their local county coordinator. Businesses may become aware of the Program from a neighboring certified business, their local compliance inspector, or their customers. The county coordinator sends the interested business an application form and a checklist specific to their industry sector (e.g. wineries, hotels, copiers, automotive services). Each environmental improvement option on the checklist is called a “green business measure.” The Program claims to streamline the regulation process for certified businesses by organizing local compliance inspectors from all of the necessary environmental agencies (e.g. Berkeley City Toxics Commission, East Bay Municipal
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Jones Green Business Certification April 21, 2005 p 2 their audits all at once. The Program county coordinator and the local compliance inspectors work with the business to help it comply first of all with mandatory environmental regulations, then with at least the minimum number of measures that must be adopted in each category (good housekeeping and pollution prevention, solid waste reduction, energy savings, and water savings) to gain the certification. The green business checklist is flexible and can be customized for the individual business to meet the standards in a variety of ways. Measures that the business had already implemented can count towards their certification. Every three years, the Program re-certifies the businesses to make sure they are still meeting the standards. The Bay Area Green Business Program’s mission is to assist, recognize and promote
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EEP_optional_sample1 - Non-Environmental Effects of the Bay...

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