Sustainability. It’s a word bandied around a lot these days. We are always amazed at how many people care and astounded at how many people who don’t. We’ve spent most of our lives being a bit ignorant about it. Sometimes when we’ve travelled overseas it’s crossed our minds…’crickey, there are lot’s of people on earth creating a mess, I wonder how it’s all managed’ Well the short answer is that in most cases, it’s not.
One of the biggest learning curves we’ve been through since opening Get Fixed Bicycle Cafe is how much waste doing business generates. Working with our amazing and talented architect Elyjana Roach, has helped us bring to life our vision for a much more sustainable model; one which we see as a benchmark for the future of how business should operate and also one that can hopefully can also serve to educate and inspire.
So what does each facet of our future vision look like and what's the rationale behind it? Here's a quick overview...
Most of our complaints, in fact probably 95% are about wait times. When we first opened we thought we would just be offering cabinet food and coffee and so we got our legendary Electrician Bruce to set us up with that in mind. Basically we got the trenches dug, the cables laid etc but then the trouble was, we kept getting bigger ideas and the pressure on the electrical infrastructure couldn’t sustain it. Remember, we’re like a food truck in many ways - limited space and cooking resources. To keep up with demand these days we’d need to re-dig those trenches and lay a more heavy duty system. Because we want to run the business more sustainably our hope is to generate a large proportion of our power via solar panels. It’s how business and consumers should be operating anyway, so we’re hoping to make it happen.
Vege Planters Growing our own means less travel time for the food we serve and ultimately a much lighter carbon footprint. So let’s give it a shot. We are not gardeners by nature but we are enthusiastic . So yeah, fingers crossed for success. Any keen gardeners out there willing to give us some tips? Grey Water Irrigation System
No more single-use coffee cups. All of our take-away cups will be Again Again or edible. We'll have a dishwasher but we will reuse our waste-water...
Reduce demands on public water supply.
Reduce the amount of wastewater entering sewers or on-site treatment systems.
Composting Toilet May sound gross but evidence shows that composting toilets...and no, they don't smell bad
reduce water usage by up to 60 percent
EV Charging Station And why not? Electric vehicles are the way of the future. The benefits are multiple...
Pollution-free commuting - Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) don’t have an exhaust and produce no emissions that cause local air pollution.
Noise reduction - EVs are quieter than petrol or diesel vehicles.
Fewer lifecycle emissions - even when you take into account raw material extraction, battery manufacture, vehicle manufacture and shipping, BEVs emit 60% fewer climate change emissions over the full life cycle than for petrol vehicles.
More efficient - electric cars can convert up to 90% of energy from their batteries into motive energy. This compares to 20% - 30% for a petrol or diesel vehicle.
Recycling Station We want to cut down on the amount of waste we produce significantly but regardless of that, we are still committing to reducing, reusing and recycling so we are going to still carry on with what we currently do and try and become even more efficient with it. Re-fillery Not only will we expand our re-fillery but we will also be working with Ecostore to become the only plastic drop-off point in Porirua. This will mean that the community can drop their recyclable plastics to us and they will go directly back to Ecostore to be recycled and used to package their products. This is a new and exciting initiative that will cut out the recycling depot and mean a much more efficient process with a reduced carbon footprint Compost Bins We will have a couple of these onsite so that we can compost our food waste, and possibly some packaging. This will mean less going to landfill and the creation of some nutritional plant food. Primarily Plant Based Menu Switching from a meat and dairy based menu to a menu based on whole grains, fruits and vegetables reduces water and land use, lowers pollution, slows deforestation and reduces destruction of topsoil, among other benefits including less factory farming. Ultimately our aim is to eliminate all meat and dairy. So that’s it in a nutshell. Watch this space. Porirua is set to be a business leader in sustainable business practices and hopefully we can be at the heart of it. Come October this year, we hope to be in our new location on Porirua's beautiful harbours edge, with some of these initiatives already in motion.