Commitment Statement

CapeSpace is committed to protecting the earth’s environment and in particular the Cape & Islands environment that we call home. We are taking the Cape & Islands Green challenge and working towards our Level 1 Green Certification.

We will be posting information on steps we are taking, and we invite members’ input and suggestions for creating a greener CapeSpace. We encourage our members to join us in conserving water and energy here at CapeSpace and at home. If you are a Cape & Islands business owner, please join us in taking the Cape & Islands Green pledge and working towards your own Green Certification.

Please send any comments to green@capespace.com.

For more information about the Cape & Islands Green click here.

Level 1 Certification Completed
Level 2 Certification

We are thrilled to announce that as of Thursday, June 27 we are officially Cape & Islands Green Level 1 Certified!  We will begin working on Level 2 in a few weeks and will keep you posted on our Level 2 progress!

What We Have Done So Far

  • We attended a Cape & Islands Green Workshop and learned the program’s mission and how to get certified
  • We formed a Green Team with staff and members to carry out the mission. We salute Green Team Members Anna Derbeneva-Costa, Aron Wittkamper and Merry Flynn!
  • We keep our thermostats on timers to save energy during off hours
  • We had Cape Light Compact [link to their site] perform an energy audit and implemented all recommendations
  • We have provided smart power strips to all our private office clients. If you haven’t installed yours yet and need help let us know!
  • We hosted the first annual EarthTech Expo, an event produced by the Cape Cod Technology Council, featuring speakers and exhibitors focused on alternative energy technologies for home and business.  We will be hosting the second one in April 2020
  • We have filtered water available on tap for our members and guests; we purchase nothing that comes in a plastic bottle
  • We have asked our suppliers to avoid unnecessary packaging and to always present us with environmentally friendly product options
  • We use only energy-efficient LED light bulbs
  • We have begun buying liquid products (hand soap, hand sanitizer, hand lotion, dish soap, surface cleaner) from Green Road Refill, a terrific local business that sells eco-friendly products in bulk and refills them as needed. No more tossing empty plastic soap containers in the trash.
  • We buy 100% of our electricity from renewable sources
  • We are calling junk mail vendors and telling them to stop!
  • We are offering a Cape & Islands Green workshop here at CapeSpace in April.
  • We are working through a back inventory of plastic plates and utensils but all new purchases will be biodgradeable
  • We buy local wherever possible, including using local vendors Green Road Refill and Cape Cod Coffee
  • We provide collection bins for gently used items needed by local charities so our members have an option for their gently used items to be reused instead of thrown away.
  • We have made the Skip the Straw pledge being promoted by our friends at CARE for the Cape & Islands

Why We Don’t Recycle

Due to recent changes in both global and local policy with respect to single stream recycling, here at CapeSpace we have discontinued our recycling service.

Commercial trash from the cape goes through a process called single stream recycling. First the collected materials go off-cape materials recovery facilities (MRFs) where they are sorted and then shipped in batches to overseas recycling plants, primarily in China.

Single stream recycling is prevented from happening by the presence of contaminants in recycling bins. Contaminants include many things but the most prevalent contaminants are food particles and plastic bags – regardless of whether those plastic bags are technically recyclable. So for example, a peanut butter jar is recyclable but only if you rinse all the peanut butter out of it, otherwise it is a contaminant and that contaminant may contaminate every other item in your toter.

It is for this reason that the new rule of thumb for recycling is “when in doubt throw it out” as explained in this article: Recycling’s new reality: ‘When in doubt, throw it out’

So, as a commercial establishment that is open to the public, it is impossible to police every item that goes into our recycle bins. Up until now we have maintained recycling service and hoped for the best. But recently China has stopped accepting recyclable materials from the US, and we have been notified by our waste management provider, Nauset Disposal, that from now on they will not even pick up the recycling if there are contaminants present. So we can be 100% certain that none of what we put in the recycling toter will be recycled because it won’t even be picked up. You can read Nauset Disposal’s statement here: Recycle-Letter-Stickers-2019.pdf

To offset the recycling problem, we are focusing on alternative green practices which include buying reusable, refillable and biodegradable products wherever possible, and implementing a carry-out policy for recyclables for those that have access to viable recycling elsewhere.

We believe this is the best course of action not just for CapeSpace but for the Cape and the planet. Recycling should be our last resort. Our focus should be on reducing the amount of waste we create.

We invite you to watch this outstanding video which chronicles how we became a throw-away society, and how we can start to think differently about it.

Thank you for reading this and for helping us go green.

It’s Easy Being Green – Our Top Tips for Going Greener with Ease

Call Cape Light Compact!

You are already paying for this service in Massachusetts with a surcharge on your electric bill. CLC will perform a full energy audit on your home or business for free, will give you a report of recommendations and their impact on your energy costs, and will pay some or all of the costs of implementing many of the recommendations.
{CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED!}

Instead of Focusing on Recycling, Follow the Five Rs

Recycling is anything but “easy” to understand. Today there are multiple recycling processes and dozens of rules for recycling different types of materials. Because very few people can always be certain they are putting the right things in the recycle bin, the bins frequently have contaminants in them that cause the entire bin to be rejected for recycling. That means a lot of what goes in the recycling bin is really going in the garbage. Recycling is a challenge, and should be considered the last line of defense, not the first. Better to focus on creating less waste, so follow the Five Rs in order: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose, Recycle.
{CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED!}

Buy from Green Road Refill

Jess Georges owns a green cleaning company and started Green Road Refill to make cleaning products available to Cape consumers that are not only eco-friendly but can be purchased in bulk and refilled as needed.
{CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT JESS}

Turn off Lights When You Leave the Room

Your mother was right!

Print Double Sided

At CapeSpace we feel that it could be inconvenient for our clients and potentially wasteful if we set our printers to automatically print double sided. But we do it ourselves as much as possible and encourage others to do the same.

Use Your Computer’s Power Management Tool

In Windows just type “sleep’ in the search bar and to “Power & Sleep Settings” to automatically turn off your screen or your computer after a set number of minutes. For Mac, Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Energy Saver.

Questions or Interested in Taking the Challenge With Us?

Are you a local business? Will you join us in taking the Cape & Islands Green challenge? Make the pledge below! Have a comment, question, idea? Please tell us about it!