Sustainability in Sedona

Sustainability in Sedona is not just about preserving our stunning natural landscapes for residents and visitors alike. It’s also about creating a vibrant and ‘green’ economy that provides meaningful jobs paying a living wage. And, it involves fostering a thriving community that offers our residents a high quality of life.

Sustainability involves making decisions such that the economy, community and environment all get better, not trading one against another.

Sustainable business

Over the last 10-15 years, the number of businesses pursuing sustainability as a strategic initiative has mushroomed. It helps them:

  • Save money through eco-efficiencies (conserving water and energy, reducing waste)
  • Attract and retain talented employees (especially the Millennials)
  • Spur innovation (creating new products or services)
  • Reduce risks and associated expenses (like health and safety, insurance)
  • Differentiate their business from competitors (benefiting from the ‘first mover advantage.’)

Non-Profits related to sustainability

Following is just a partial list of area non-profits that support sustainability work:

Gardens for Humanity — uses gardens and art as a basis of environmental education and food security.

Keep Sedona Beautiful — manages litter lifters, advises on land use policies, led the Dark Sky certification, offers an annual Native Plant workshop and presents awards to leading businesses.

Oak Creek Watershed —focused on watershed stewardship and preserving the integrity of Oak Creek.

Sedona Recycles — provides high quality recycling services for a wide array of materials and provides environmental education to the community and schools.

Sustainability Alliance — coalition of non-profits working across disciplines to identify major opportunities to move toward sustainability including a business certification.

Verde River Basin Partnership —  a scientific and educational resource raising awareness among citizens and community leaders about the workings and limitations of Verde River Basin’s interconnected groundwater and surface water systems and the life they support.

Yavapai Food Council – develops programs that support those who serve the hungry and increases resources for the food insecure.

Education for sustainability

Many schools are implementing elements of sustainability into their curriculum. Verde Valley School is becoming a model.Green Earth Business

Big Park School — Offering a sustainability focused STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) summer camp.

Verde Valley School — In addition to offering a sustainability-focused “International Baccalaureate plus Dirt” education for high school students from around the world, VVS hopes to become a food hub to help feed our hungry.

Yavapai College — Has worked to make its campuses more sustainable (including couple LEED-certified buildings) and is spearheading education on low-water wineries at its Southwest Wine Center. In addition, they offer affordable lifelong learning programs through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in Sedona (OLLI).

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