Why 104 Sedona Businesses Are Certified Sustainable and How You Can Join Them



April 16, 2021

Today, 104 Sedona-area businesses are certified sustainable, the most ever. Anywhere from 20 to 30 will join this year.

Why do they do it?

Businesses see the connection between Sedona’s economic recovery and caring for the environment, our guests and a high quality of life.  It also makes good business sense to reduce energy and waste, recycle, empower employees and using alternative transportation.

But there is more. The program and participants have more than 300 media hits this year. That’s a lot of free recognition!  We promote new members on social media and newsletters, too.

From an Eye Clinic to a Jeep Tour: 6 Certification Examples

Eye Boutique Sedona partners with APS for 100 percent green power. They carry frames made from recycled plastic, and customers can drop off used lenses and contacts for recycling. Dr. Carolyn Martin’s team uses no harsh cleaning products and limit their carbon footprint; one employee works from home, another walks to work, and Dr. Martin commutes in an electric vehicle.

Pink Jeep Tours maintains Broken Arrow Trail with fill dirt and natural plants. They sanitize with pressurized air and non-petroleum-based cleaners. While awaiting feasible electric vehicles, they recycle soil and coolant and sends greasy garage laundry to a green linen service that keeps grease from the waste stream.  Pink Jeep eliminates more than 50,000 plastic water bottles every year by removing them from their tours and with refill stations at Pink Jeep Plaza.

Sedona Spirit Journeys & Vortex Tours owner Laurie Hutchinson (chosen name, Crystal StarrWeaver) educates guests to stay on trails and preserve the cryptobiotic crust that prevents erosion. Crystal’s adobe building rarely requires A/C, uses skylights to reduce electricity and complies with Dark Sky guidelines. She plans tour routes to minimize carbon emissions.

Element Sedona Hotel in VOC discourages plastic bottles with refillable glass carafes. They reduce water use by washing linens once a week unless requested. Their fixtures are more efficient than standard low flow rates, but nozzle rings ensure plenty of water pressure. The saltwater pool means no chlorine onsite. Element composts food waste in a partnership with Verde Valley School. Staff centrally control vacant room temperatures, and lights go off automatically when guests leave. Element offers guests free “Bikes to Borrow” and four EV chargers.

Junipine Resort in Oak Creek Canyon composts 70% of landscape waste, and their irrigation system prevents overwatering. They are replacing plants with drought-tolerant natives. Fire awareness is a top priority in the Canyon. Junipine maintains cleared zones around all buildings and aimed sprinklers spray wooded areas during extreme fire threats. Staff regularly clear pine needles and other debris.  Non-toxic pest and weed management protect soil, groundwater and wildlife. The kitchen’s menu minimizes waste, and the Resort plans a compost structure for kitchen waste.

The City of Sedona’s Municipal Sustainability Plan aims for zero waste and carbon neutrality. The City cut energy use by almost 20% with lighting and HVAC efficiency upgrades. City Hall uses solar panels and buys 31 percent renewable power, with plans to add more. The City also hosts Fix-it Clinics, household hazardous events and supports Sedona Recycles.

Interested in qualifying?  You must show how you:

> reduce non-renewable energy and materials
> minimize pollution and waste
> protect ecosystems
> meet human needs

The Alliance be happy to help out.  Email  business@sustainabilityallianceaz.orgwalk-and-talk-250x200

Then, see you in the headlines!

-Candace Carr Strauss,