FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the Green Business Certification Program?
The Green Business Certification Program is a voluntary program that encourages businesses to implement proactive actions that are good for their bottom line and the environment. The Santa Monica Green Business Certification Program is collaboration between the City of Santa Monica , Chamber of Commerce, Convention & Visitors Bureau and Sustainable Works to certify and recognize green businesses in the Santa Monica Community.
-Rustic Canyon Wine Bar and Seasonal Kitchen
Why did Santa Monica decide to offer a Green Business Certification Program?
Many businesses have taken steps to incorporate sustainable practices into their operations and have improved their performance, but until now, customers had no way of recognizing which businesses were going "green." The City of Santa Monica, the Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Chamber of Commerce and Sustainable Works have joined together to certify and recognize green businesses in our community by issuing them with a Green Business Certification (GBC) certificate and window decal featuring the GBC logo.
What does a business have to do in order to obtain Green Business Certification?
In order to become Green Business Certified in Santa Monica , businesses must enroll in the program and then comply by choosing a specific number of measures/ actions from a list on the GBC checklist.
The Checklists specifies program criteria for conserving resources, preventing pollution and minimizing waste. Once the business checks off all the required number of measures, they submit a completed checklist, required supplemental materials along with payment to the Green Business Certification Coordinator. Upon receipt, a GBC representative schedules an onsite visit at the business to verify that the specified actions are indeed in place.
How long does the certification period last once a business gets 'green business certified'?
Once the businesses passes the onsite verification process, they are green certified for a period of 2 years.
Can a GBC Business renew certification after 2 years?
Yes. They must complete the GBC checklist process again by checking off all required and optional measures, and then submit completed materials along with a small fee to the GBC Coordinator.
Who can apply for Green Business Certification
Businesses* located in the City of Santa Monica that fall under the following sectors:
- Retail Store
*Minimum 5 employees
*Minimum 500 square feet commercial business space
Can I still apply for GBC if my business does not fall under one of the sectors listed?
No. If your business does not fall under one of the sectors listed above, do not complete the checklists and apply for GBC. *call GBC Coordinator upon registration to confirm eligibility. As the GBC program grows, checklists will become available to other business sectors.
Do the GBC checklists ever get revised or updated?
Yes. The GBC committee, comprising of City of Santa Monica Office of Sustainability and Environment (SMOSE) and Sustainable Works staff, updates the checklists every 2 years with current resources, new technology, applicable rebates, incentives and city ordinances. The first checklist revision occurred in 2008 so checklists will be updated every 2 years onward and posted online in January of the revision year.
What happens if the checklist I submit upon completion isn’t the current checklist available online?
Businesses can submit the checklist version that was available when they registered for the GBC program. This is why it is very important to register for the program as per instructions on page 2 of each checklist.