The goals in our first year after formation of the Zoo Miami Green Team were to get a detailed energy audit performed to evaluate the entire facility and expand our scope of recycling activities. The energy audit was done with representatives from FPL in several stages to cover the vast grounds. Results of this audit are now being compiled by FPL for a comprehensive report. We were able to add 20 new recycling stations around zoo grounds for the patrons. We also negotiated with several companies to obtain the ability to recycle a greater variety of materials, at no cost to the Zoo or county.
We hope to improve upon our energy efficiency in the next year using the energy audit as a tool. We will utilize a variety of strategies such as timers, motion switches, and low wattage bulbs to reduce consumption and increase efficiency in those areas that consume the greatest amount. Converting our recycling program into a single stream program would likely increase compliance and efficiency.
We are exploring expanding our composting program to not only increase the materials utilized by possibly entering a profit sharing agreement with a company. This would not only reduce our waste, transportation costs, and landfill contribution but could turn a profit to reinvest in more conservation and efficiency programs. A water usage audit is planned for the upcoming year. Reducing our usage through timed irrigation with rain sensors, converting to drip systems, electronic eye faucets and waterless urinals are all measures we have discussed that may be appropriate after we have the audit results.
Zoo Miami is expanding its green efforts on a daily basis through education, recycling, composting, and many of the initiatives listed above, as well as new ideas each day. We are testing out new, green products on a regular basis and are constantly seeking new vendors with greener, more sustainable products. Our recent appointment of the Zoo Green Team has proven that our efforts are rapidly expanding and having an important impact on our visitors and our facility. Our institution has shown the community that it is dedicated to:
Conserving the environment and its resources
Educating the citizens of South Florida about the environment and how to conserve it
Developing and implementing greener practices