Three businesses, Town of Clarkdale earn sustainability certification

At the Clear Creek Vineyard and Winery in Camp Verde, Ignacio Mesa uses geese and chickens for pest control instead of synthetic pesticies, covers crops for fertilization, and uses passive solar heat in the winter to ferment the wine. Photo courtesy of the Sustainability Alliance

At the Clear Creek Vineyard and Winery in Camp Verde, Ignacio Mesa uses geese and chickens for pest control instead of synthetic pesticies, covers crops for fertilization, and uses passive solar heat in the winter to ferment the wine. Photo courtesy of the Sustainability Alliance

The Verde Valley’s Sustainability Alliance now has certified 30 organizations as Sustainable Businesses in 18 different categories/industries.

The newest additions include organizations in Camp Verde, Clarkdale, Cottonwood and Sedona.

APPAREL: Sedona Yogi Yoga Wear. They make workout clothes from recycled pop bottles.

ARTISTS/GALLERIES: Bonnie Lane Designs: She makes elegant solar lights from salvaged and thrift store materials which are sold in Cottonwood. As a result of this certification, it appears another certified business may be purchasing her lights.

GOVERNMENT: Clarkdale is the first municipality to get certified and they earned Silver, in part because of their permaculture garden and rainwater harvesting. They also require all developers to use drought-tolerant plants and they give all builders guidelines for sustainable building practices.

WINERIES: Clear Creek Vineyard and Winery: In Camp Verde, Ignacio and Sue Mesa use geese and chickens for pest control instead of synthetic pesticies, cover crops for fertilization, and passive solar heat in the winter to ferment the wine. Dogs Cisco and Pancho keep the critters out of the vineyards; on our site visit, it was evident to David Gill and Darcy Hitchcock that they had recently chased off a skunk.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Please favor businesses that make our community better. ‘Vote with your wallet’ by looking for the Sustainable Business Certification on the Who’s Certified page. (www.SustainabilityCertifications.org)

MORE ABOUT THE CERTIFICATION: The certification is a way to recognize and drive business toward companies that do the most for their employees, our community and the environment.

There are three levels of certification:

• Conservationist (BRONZE): These organizations have reduced their negative impacts on the environment and improved the quality of life for employees and communities

• Innovator (SILVER): These organizations have become producers of sustainable resources, products and energy and are actively influencing customers, suppliers and peers

• Sustainable (GOLD): These organizations are fully sustainable, meeting globally accepted sustainability standards. They designed their business model around sustainable mission and share power and wealth with employees

It is the desire of the Sustainability Alliance to make Sedona and Northern Arizona a destination of education on the principles and practices of sustainable living. There is an enormous opportunity to reach the many visitors to our area, and to leave them with a lesson to take home.

The Sustainability Alliance was founded by five regional organizations (Gardens for Humanity, Keep Sedona Beautiful, Sedona Recycles, Verde River Basin Partnership, and World Survival Foundation.

The group is now involved in the certification of businesses and their sustainable business practices in the Verde Valley and Sedona area. (http://www.sustainabilityallianceaz.org/p/about-us.html).

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