Watershed Management Group

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How does the company you are nominating exemplify the concept of “reducing”?

We (Watershed Management Group) are great at reducing our negative impact, but it’s a small part of what we do. We focus on creating a positive impact with the resources we have. Our office of over 15 staff produces less than 65 gallons of trash per week and we use very little water, sewer and electricity for our normal business operations with our large cisterns, compost toilet and solar panels. Once our systems are completely installed, we will not need ANY city utilities! Our staff reduces our impact on traffic and fuel consumption by biking and busing. We ride over 300 miles per month for work.

How does the company you are nominating exemplify the concept of “reusing”?

Reuse is a core component of our business. At our office we reuse all organic waste with our composting systems—including a permitted composting toilet! Almost nothing goes to waste at our office. Scrap materials are sold or reused by employees. We use water that comes from the sky and reuse it throughout our landscape with greywater systems to support our native edible and fruit tree urban orchard.

What is this company’s recycling policy and practice?

Recycling is a requirement and encouraged with signs, separate containers for waste, organics and recyclables. We also work hard to educate and inform staff and the public who visit our Living Lab and Learning Center about recyclable materials and best practices to reduce waste. We conduct our events to be zero waste and we work closely with vendors to ensure recyclability/compostability of products being utilized. Our office and event signage work very well to educate our guests and the public on best practices for recycling and leading a zero waste life style.
How is this company engaging and informing consumers and employees about the 3 “Rs” and other sustainable practices?

Education for our employees and our community (customers) is of primary importance for our mission. We are promoting these practices throughout all of our projects in addition to specific tours at our Living Lab and Learning Center, office and project signage as well as educational training. Employees are encouraged to take the best practices we have implemented at our office to utilize in their home to help save money and create a positive individual impact on their community…that is if they haven’t already. Many of our employees have implemented many or all of our practices at their homes.

What else would you like us to know about this company?

Watershed Management Group (WMG) is a Tucson based non-profit organization that helps connect people to their local environment to improve our quality of life. We focus on holistic management of natural resources through our development of projects and policies in close collaboration with communities.

We work with diverse people, including schoolchildren, neighborhood groups, low-income populations, businesses, design and engineering professionals, city governments, and elected officials. Founded in 2003, WMG has trained thousands of people in cities throughout Arizona and the greater Southwest including New Mexico and southern California. We have worked with cities including Tucson, Phoenix, and Flagstaff to develop and implement ground-breaking green infrastructure practices and standard designs. We led in the development of a Green Streets Active Practice Guideline policy governing all new or redeveloped roadways for the City of Tucson which was passed unanimously by the Mayor and Council.

Our long-term vision is to preserve and restore urban and rural watersheds including hydrologic processes which reestablish and enhance flowing rivers and streams throughout the Southwest. WMG is a founding member and the primary fiscal sponsor of the Community Water Coalition, a group that provides leadership and guidance toward water policy that sustains healthy ecosystems and quality of life in the Santa Cruz Watershed. WMG is also a founding partner of the Tucson Conserve to Enhance Program, which works to ensure that water conservation will translate into benefits for the environment by linking personal water conservation efforts with local riparian restoration projects. These are the two leading efforts in the Santa Cruz watershed to restore flowing desert rivers.