Simply put, we believe that it is the responsibility of every business to minimize, and to work towards, eliminating its environmental footprint. It is our goal to be carbon neutral by 2040. Green practices are at the core of what every decision and action we make, because without a beautiful environment we would not exist. We want customers to confidently and freely choose our services, knowing that Stoneburg Cove Cottages is committed to sustainable practices, and that they do not need to choose between sustainability, style, function or price.
We have taken numerous actions to reduce water usage across the resort. Some of the measures we have taken, include installation of: aerators on faucets, low-flow shower heads, certified water efficient toilets, HE laundry washers, and energy star rated appliances. Additionally we only use rainwater or untreated lake water on our grounds and flowers.
Reducing and even eliminating electricity usage on the property has been another major initiative towards a Greener facility. In our renovated cottages, we use only LED bulbs, and Eco-Star rated appliances. We installed only double pane windows filled with argon gas, and built with e-glass to reduce the need for heating, and air conditioning. Additionally, we well insulated the new cottages and installed ceiling fans to further reduce the need for heating/air conditioning while increasing guest comfort. We are also using 23 gallon water heaters which use far less energy than larger models yet always have plenty of hot water available. In our vintage cottages we use only CFL bulbs. We turned off the light polluting, floodlights which were throughout the property and replaced them with solar lights, and solar motion activated floodlights in key areas. We changed our electricity supplier to one that only uses green sources.
The aggregate actions reduced our electricity usage by 40% in the first year alone.
In order to protect the health of our guests, and reduce our impact on mother earth, we eliminated the use of harmful chemicals and hazardous materials throughout the property. All harmful pesticides and chemicals have been replaced with green alternatives that are phosphate free and biodegradable. This includes bromine in the pool, all cleaning products used in our guest cottages, and laundry. We use only latex, and no VCO, or zero fume paints, and Micro Pro Sienna lumber throughout the property.
Our Green renovations have provided yet another opportunity to reduce our impact. In addition to the initiatives already mentioned, we are using only: FSC certified softwood lumber, insulation from 70% recycled materials, environmentally friendly laminate flooring, and some used materials and furniture. Our intention is not only to reduce our footprint, but to maximize guest comfort.
We employ strong green initiatives outside, inside the common areas, and also in the administrative areas. We think twice before pressing print. We implemented a paperless check-in system and e-mail invoices whenever possible. We send out e-cards, and e-newsletters, to maintain contact as much as possible. Beyond the policies already mentioned, we have many more, from: using paper made from 100% recycled fibre, toilet paper from 100% recycled fibre, printing double sided when we are able, unplugging refrigerators and hot water heaters when not in use, to turning the air conditioning and heating to a fixed, reasonable temperature when not in use. We continually strive to do better behind the scenes.
Whenever possible we try to reuse old products/materials, use products from recycled materials, or repurpose old products for other uses. For example we use: some building materials were procured through Kijiji, some furniture was bought through estate auctions and from luxury hotels, we only used insulation made from 70% recycled materials, toilet paper from 100% recycled fibre, Adirondack chairs made from 100% recycled plastic, used old lumber from the renovations as firewood, we donated hundreds of pounds of old blankets, furniture, and linens, old containers make great bins for screws, nails, boat parts etc.
We are always looking at new ways to buy products made from recycled materials and to reuse/repurpose products.
Our in room recycling bins are conveniently located in each cottage, in fact, we have two, one for paper, and one for plastic. Additionally, we have bins throughout the property, and have purchased five 94 gallon recycling bins. All trash and recyclables go through a 3 stage sort process, ensuring perfect compliance. We recycle and donate all old: furniture, linens, appliances, and construction materials. We are redirecting roughly 2,000 litres (550 gallons) of materials from landfills each week, in season.
We hope to recycle more as our customer focused recycle awareness program pays more dividends.
We have recycled thousands of pounds of scrap metal from our facility, old BBQ’s, fridges, stoves, water heaters, bed frames, etc.