Over the past month, some of New Orleans’s favorite companies and organizations have joined us in building the Impact Economy right here in our City!
Learn more about our newest LifeCity Business Members and some of their great products and services. Also, make sure to check out their exclusive Green Card discounts.
Best Services: Sarah The Pet Sitter
Sarah the Pet Sitter is an organization that at first glance, seems to have nothing to do with sustainability. But as we saw from the Green Natties Awards – any business can become a green business. This organization blew LifeCity away with its commitment to sustainable business practices. It not only tracks and enters its carbon footprint daily (and gas savings that result), but also goes above and beyond its peer organizations in teaching their consumers how to live greener lives. In fact, this company has even hired a part-time sustainability manager to measure and improve its social and environmental impact. As they said during their Green Games report: “we have the opportunity to either build that community up, ignore it, or break it down. We choose to be a positive force through simple actions.”
Sarah the Pet Sitter provides thoughtful pet care and owner support that intentionally respects the pet, the family, the community, and the planet. Sarah the Pet Sitter is an insured and bonded professional pet sitting and dog walking service in New Orleans. All of their services include love, play, light grooming, and a text update to pet parent.
Eco Urban has a strong social and environmental mission and works around the clock every day to improve their environmental impact. In addition to providing an environmental service while also supporting and training employees in professional development, this company has shown significant improvement in their community impact. The company was invited to participate in a sustainability panel at the Sewerage and Water board, and is active in advocating for innovative policy changes including rebates for rainwater harvest. As finalists in the 2014 Water Challenge and their connection to the Department of Health and Hospitals, they advocate for policy change in favor of using rainwater for non-potable, indoor uses, such as flushing toilets, which account for 30% of a home’s water usage.
Eco Urban is the only local, full-service landscaping company specializing in sustainable products and eco-friendly practices. From native and edible plants, to decks, pervious patios and LED lighting, to cisterns and rainwater irrigation, we design and maintain the garden of your dreams while cultivating a greener New Orleans.
Best Non-Profit: Project Lazurus
Through the Green Games, Project Lazurus replaced CFL and halogen lights with LED lights and installed motion sensors in their gym. They replaced two older HVAC systems with newer more efficient systems and 41 thermostats with programmable wireless thermostats. On the social side, this organization takes an innovative holistic approach to health that they call “Wellness University”, servicing the homeless with HIV/AIDS through physical, emotional, and spiritual care.
Project Lazarus helps heal and empower people living with HIV/AIDS by focusing on wellness, providing housing and offering important support services.
Most Improved Non-Profit: Louisiana Bucket Brigade
The Louisiana Bucket Brigade has truly impressed LifeCity by taking on a zero-waste strategy in their office. They documented their trash and made changes to their policies in order to reduce waste. For example, staff no longer bring take-out containers home but use tupperware instead. Every small change adds up and this non-profit takes the time to look at everything they do from composting, to water filtration, to event practices that require vendors to support sustainable practices on Earth Day.
The Louisiana Bucket Brigade is a 501(c)(3) environmental health and justice organization working with communities that neighbor the state’s oil refineries and chemical plants. Their mission is to support communities’ use of grassroots action to create informed, sustainable neighborhoods free from industrial pollution.
Best Office: CLEAResult
CLEAResult is an organization that implements sustainable practices in the office and the entire nature of their business is green. In fact, this organization has saved the city over 15 million kilowatt hours by managing energy efficiency programs for homeowners, renters, and businesses. This company has gone above and beyond their traditional services and have upcycled their waste with local artists. The inefficient showerheads removed from the businesses and homes they serve are now being given to Unique Products who is turning them into Chandeiliers as you see over there (point to Chandelier). This process is also raising money for a local non-profit, the Louisiana Green Corps.
CLEAResult works with utility clients to design, implement and evaluate cost-effective optimization programs. By promoting efficient usage and placing a stronger focus on holistic organizational strategies, they help customers drive lower costs and get the most from energy.
The Shell Office of Real Estate is not only undergoing a waste audit to eliminate waste in the office but also committing to doing zero-waste office events in the future. They are re-designing their entire office space to become LEED certified and leveraging their role as a renter to convince the largest building downtown to become a certified LEED Silver building as well. While we cannot judge the entire organization in and of itself because of its size, we would like to recognize their local office leaders who are truly making a difference in green building leadership in our community.
The Shell local Office of Real Estate seeks to integrate sustainable behaviors into their office culture. They are also pursuing LEED certification and continuing to examine other ways to support the New Orleans local sustainability movement.
Cafe Carmo has partnered with the Gulf Restoration Network to promote sustainable fisheries. They now use the left-over fish from fishermen that would normally not be utilized for their restaurant! They have almost no trash and all of their tables and chairs were upcycled and made from materials that would have been thrown away. They sell phenomenal vegan food and their restaurant is lit with LED lights. We appreciate all this restaurant has done for our community, both socially and environmentally.
Carmo is a tropical cafe built upon the rich, multi-cultural culinary influences found throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America, Gulf South and beyond. Carmo also implements a variety of sustainable practices from purchasing local organic produce and seafood to utilizing all biodegradable take out ware and cleaning supplies.
Breads on Oak has demonstrated a true commitment to becoming a green business by re-writing their mission statement, purchasing new to-go items, moving to nearly all organic items, converting left over bread to chicken stock, and using both fair trade and organic coffee. They even have a significant vegan menu,which has the lowest carbon footprint of all types of dishes, and have eliminated waste in their entire operations.
Breads on Oak bakes artisan breads and breakfast pastries in the European tradition as well as a full line of organic vegan muffins and sweets. They serve organic fair trade coffee and espresso too. Join them in house or for take out as they get back to the historic bread baking roots of New Orleans!
Best Retail: ZukaBaby
ZukaBaby sells only safe and sustainable products for children and offsets all of the distribution carbon emissions in order to make shipping for the organization carbon neutral. The business also connects to the local community by providing educational workshops which not only supports others, but also builds customer loyalty that sustains the business. This past year, the company also implemented a “Share the Love” program that provides a cloth diaper donate and distribution bank in New Orleans for families in need.
ZukaBaby is a Natural Parenting Boutique that specializes in cloth diapers, baby wearing, breastfeeding, natural toys and organic layette. They are not only a retail store, but also a building point for a community that wants more local, natural, unique, affordable options for families.
In the last year, the Hollygrove Market & Farm and their staff has devoted a great amount of time and energy in order to bring more to the neighborhood surrounding their company. They have hosted Community Health Fairs and provided other important services such as health screenings, children’s dental check-ups, and resource education for senior citizens. They have also participated in the Fruit & Veggie Prescription Program, which allows local health clinics to prescribe patients that are suffering from diabetes or obesity prescriptions that can be exchanged for fresh produce at tehir market. Rather than seeing other companies as competitors, this business understands the opportunity to collaborate in “a rising tide that lifts all boats.”
Since 2008, Hollygrove Market and Farm has worked to increase access of fresh, local produce to Hollygrove and the surrounding neighborhoods through our twice weekly produce market, community gardens, and mentor farmer programs.
Best School: New Orleans Charter Math & Science High School
The New Orleans Charter Math & Science High School has taken on a Zero Waste strategy and is implementing a plan to eliminate wall waste from the school. Furthermore, this school has shown that eliminating waste actually saves you money. In just the past 6 months alone, this school has diverted 15,400 pounds of waste through recycling programs and the purchase of reusable trays for lunch and has saved the school over $1,500 dollars.
The New Orleans Charter Science and Mathematics High School provides a rigorous education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) to traditionally under-served high school students in Orleans Parish. It is among the very few open-admissions science and math high schools in the country.
Although Lycée Français’ is only three years old, they have been eager to learn what to do through the Green Games in order to improve its social and environmental impact. This school has saved money by buying paper locally and green cleaning products in bulk through the Green School Group. They created a green committee so that people at every level of the school are involved and have brought in outside consultants to teach their community about sustainability through the Energy Wise Alliance. Lycée Français’ goal is to create a top-notch academic and multicultural school environment that will inspire its students to reach their potential.
Best Manufacturer: Orleans Coffee Exchange
The Orleans Coffee Exchange stood out in particular as they have become more engaged in their social and environmental impact. For example, the burlap sacks that the company uses to hold the coffee beans are now being donated to another LifeCity member to turn the material into hand bags, which will reduce waste and help a local artist and entrepreneur at the same time. This company is also committed to providing certified organic coffee to our regionCoffee Exchange was founded in 1985. Orleans Coffee Exchange is a small, family-owned company that takes pride in providing the highest quality coffees at a fair price. They are certified Organic and Fair Trade roasters and carry Organic, Fair Trade, and Rain Forrest Alliance certified coffee beans.
NOLA Brewing continues to demonstrate its commitment not just to beer, but to its staff, its community, and environment. The company produces a quality line of local beers in their Irish Channel facility. They emphasize sustainability in their business practices, including using cans rather than glass bottles in their packaged beers. Who knew that beer could be green!