Green Neighbors Program

The Clark County Green Neighbors Program was developed and is maintained by Clark County Solid Waste and Environmental Outreach to assist citizens with developing more sustainable lifestyles and building a strong environmental community in Clark County. Solid waste regional planning and programs are a cooperative effort of Battle Ground, Camas, Clark County, La Center, Ridgefield, Vancouver, Washougal, and Yacolt. Funding for this project provided by a grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology.

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Green Business Spotlight: Ryonet

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We are very proud to be a part of the green community here in Clark County. We believe this helps remind our team and our customers the need and desire to be better today than we were the day before.

Tyler Stepper, Ryonet

Ryonet is a screen printing supply provider located in Vancouver. Screen printing is the process of using mesh and stencils to transfer ink designs onto products, like apparel. Ryonet provides screen printing supplies such as screens, presses, printers, tools, accessories and inks. Sustainable business practices are a priority for Ryonet: "We want to walk the walk not just talk the talk. We are trying to push our industry into this century from a dark and dirty place," said Tyler Stepper of Ryonet.

They describe the process to become a certified Clark County Green Business this year as "illuminating." Through the process, which included audits of waste and energy and water use, Ryonet made many changes to reduce their environmental impact. This included replacing lighting with energy-efficient LED options, purchasing reusable dishes for their break room, and installing low-flow water fixtures. 

Going above and beyond, they are trying to influence the screen printing industry as a whole to be more green. "We are pioneering a new age within our industry. We are asking and pulling customers to be more green. We are pushing vendors to find new ways to make their products and practices more green," Tyler told us. Recent efforts include their "Kick the Can" campaign to reduce use of a toxic chemical during screen printing.

While they worked hard and made many changes to reduce their environmental impact, they are most proud of the ways in which they've been able to give back to the community: their employees volunteer with the Clark County Food Bank to support their events and provide holiday meals to more than 200 food-insecure families in Clark County.

Ryonet's Project 376 aims to make the screen printing industry more environmentally friendly.

As part of their desire to reduce the environmental and human impacts at all steps of the garment creation process, Ryonet co-founded Allmade, a company that makes an environmentally and socially responsible alternative to traditionally manufactured clothing used in screen printing. Allmade shirts use 70 percent less water to manufacture than traditionally-made shirts and aren't treated with chemicals. Their shirts are made from recycled polyester from plastic bottles, organic cotton, and a fiber made from sustainably harvested beech trees. Being manufactured in Haiti also reduces the carbon footprint of the apparel as it makes its journey from source to manufacturer to customer. Allmade also provides a living wage for its employees in Haiti.

You can learn more about Ryonet's green initiatives, including their Project 376, on their blog. Congrats on becoming a certified Clark County Green Business, Ryonet! 

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