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: Magenta Theater

magenta-seats
Credit: Magenta Theater

 Magenta Theater in the heart of downtown Vancouver is a local hub for the performing arts. They are a community-based 501(c)(3) non-profit community theater, relying on enthusiastic volunteers to bring live performances to the stage. Their dedication to the community and environment is apparent in everything they do, which earned them Green Business certification in 2018.

When you walk into Magenta's lobby, you will notice lighting fixtures made out of recycled materials. The bamboo bar-top at the concessions stand was reclaimed from a closing business. Black curtains once used as stage backdrops are now being repurposed for partitions throughout the theater and behind the scenes. Stage sets and props are methodically saved and reused for future performances, eliminating an age-old "dump run" to throw away used sets when a play finished its run.

When Magenta moved into this location in 2016, the 1920's building needed some upgrading. The team went straight into action to insulate the building and to restore the neglected HVAC system. While these upgrades helped with energy efficiency, the greatest source of energy consumption is the tungsten lighting on stage. Traditional tungsten stage lights are high-maintenance, produce a lot of heat, consume a lot of energy, and are not long-lasting.

In 2018, the Murdock Trust awarded Magenta Theater a grant to upgrade stage lighting to smart and energy-efficient LEDs. And after weeks of fundraising, Magenta has matched the grant and now have the total funds needed for the project. The new lights are set to be installed before the debut of "Pack of Lies," in March, much to the delight of the theater's lighting crew.

The new system will be extremely energy efficient, long-lasting, and will open new opportunities for the production crew. For example, to change lighting colors, colored gels needed to be manually changed on the old lights, requiring a brave volunteer to climb a tall ladder to switch them out. With the LED lights, color changes can be operated digitally, eliminating the time and hazard of changing gels manually.

This upgrade was hard-earned and will be an excellent addition to the rest of the theater's green practices. Their creativity and everyday efforts of waste and energy reduction make Magenta Theater an outstanding addition to the Green Business community, and we welcome them!

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The Clark County Green Business Program recognizes businesses for environmental excellence through onsite assistance and verification of green business practices. The program provides an environmental assessment, resources, and assistance to businesses seeking a structured approach to implementing green initiatives and measuring results. Our businesses demonstrate that going green is not only good for the environment, it is also good for business's bottom line, improving employee morale, increasing operational efficiency and maintaining a positive public image.
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