While we know that there is always more to do, we are proud of the ways in which we have consciously created a green business. In fact, Maria's Bookshop is included on the Sustainable Business List compiled by Fort Lewis College's Environmental Center. Here are some of the steps we have taken towards sustainability:
Cutting the Carbon Footprint
- Maria’s Bookshop has purchased 100% wind power from LPEA.
- All lighting is LED.
- Uses timers to control indoor and outdoor lights.
- Installed solar shades on west-facing upper windows.
- Uses swamp cooler instead of air conditioning.
- Provides free trolley tokens to customers to encourage use of public transport.
- Promotes an internal culture of biking through efforts such as support for Durango Clean Commute Week.
Responsible Purchasing and Product Sourcing
- Maria’s Bookshop buys office supplies from independent downtown businesses.
- Uses “green” cleaning products.
- Provides employees with shade-grown coffee.
- Supports local authors by carrying and selling their books.
- Sells other locally-made products such as greeting cards, journals, bags, earrings, etc.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
- Maria’s Bookshop customers are encouraged to take a plastic bag for their purchases only if “needed”.
- Sells reusable fabric bags.
- Purchases only recycled content copy/printer paper.
- Recyclable paper is collected separately for city recycling pick-up.
- Recyclable plastic, glass and metal is taken to city recycling collection site.
- Incoming shipment cardboard boxes are recycled.
- Incoming shipment packaging “peanuts” are given to and reused at local pottery shop.
- Incoming shipment bubble-wrap is reused for outgoing shipments.
- Note paper is cut from reused copy paper sheets.
- Bathroom and kitchen paper products are made from recycled materials.
- Recycled “Glass Mulch” is used in landscaping.
Enhancing the Environment
- Maria’s Bookshop promotes and participates in the annual Durango Main Avenue clean-up.
- Provide plants and care for several flower boxes and planters in front of store.
Community Education & Investment
- Maria’s Bookshop provides both financial and in-kind donations to over 100 community charities and events every year, including the Hospice of Mercy Soup for the Soul, Children’s Museum of Durango, Women’s Resource Center, Durango Early Learning Center, and the San Juan Citizen’s Alliance.
- Participates in a program through the American Booksellers Association called Indiebound that promotes local, independent businesses across the country.
- Founding business member of Local First, an alliance of independent, locally owned businesses in LaPlata County. Peter (Maria's Bookshop co-owner) serves on Local First's board.
- Devotes significant shelf space to “green” and community-health themed publications.
- Promotes community events and charities through special shelf and window displays.
- Hosts book signings and other in-store events.
- Financially supports local public radio and TV.
- Serves as a community ticket outlet for local events.
- Sells fundraising items such as the Durango Public Library Calendar.
- Provides free exhibit space for local artists
Fair and Healthy Workplace
We strive to pay livable wages and offer valuable employee benefits.
Staff provided with:
Free parking passes for downtown city lot.
Opportunity to participate in Simple IRA Employer Contribution Plan.
Opportunity to participate in Aflac medical care benefit program.
Gift cards to other local businesses as perks.