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Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar

Name of property Ojo del Mar
Person completing this form Nico Fischer
Position Owner
Address of property  Cabo Matapalo, Peninsula de Osa
Country Costa Rica
Phone number including country code and area code 506 735 55 31
Web site Ojo Del Mar
E-mail ojodelmar@yahoo.de
Type of property Eco Lodge, Retreat center
Number of rooms or cottages 5 cabins
Maximum number of guests 15
Eco memberships
Eco ratings, certifications, awards Eco Rating at Eco Tropical Resorts: 5 out of 5.
  • Do you have a written environmental or social sustainability policy? YES

If yes, please attach.

  • Do you have a written environmental management system?              YES

If yes, please attach.

  • Describe the property – aim, size, facilities, amount of land owned and leased  (150 words max)

4 acres beachfront, 5 cabins and Restaurant with library in lush tropical gardens and secondary forest, open air Yoga studio and Spa.

  • Describe the location, including distance to nearest town and size of town (100 words max)

Southern Costa Rica, Peninsula de Osa, in the Golfo Dulce (one of only 5 tropical fjords on earth!), nestled between the ocean and the tropical rainforest (one of the most biodiverse areas left on earth ), off the grid!
The nearest town Pto. Jimnenez is 18 km , dirt road.

Introduction to the Butterfly Club’s Eco Rating

The Butterfly Club Eco Rating has five equally-weighted categories:

  • Energy;
  • Water;
  • Recycling and waste;
  • Land and nature conservation; and
  • Community.

Each category has five levels, designated by one to five butterflies.  Through self assessment, resort operators completing this rating will determine their own levels within each category based on their responses to items listed below.

Two categories – energy and water – have similar rating systems with Levels 1 and 2 addressing conservation of existing resources, and Levels 3, 4 and 5 addressing creation of renewable energy or capturing water.

Level five in every category also requires written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record consumption; (2) test and apply additional conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific targets.   We require a copy of your policies if you achieve level 5 in any category.

Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar Energy

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

__x_  use natural air circulation and fans, not air conditioners
__x   use natural light during the day
__x_  minimize use of fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines and equipment
__x_  use “on demand” or solar heating for hot water
__x_  air dry clothes/linens
__x_  wash dishes by hand
__x_  use energy efficient appliances and electronics
__x_  use low wattage fluorescent light bulbs
_x__  change linens, tablecloths, napkins upon request
_x__  switch off lights when not used
Other energy conservation activities? Please list:
Nico is the author of the book “Living in the Jungle”, a handbook about sustainable living in this area.  Power resources are a big part in it.  The book is made especially for landowners, to give helpful information about construction, gardening, power, water, waste, sewage, recycling, organic food, ethic guidelines, and much more…

We don’t use a generator!!!  All the buildings are built by hand, no powertools. 
All cabins are elevated and open, they don’t need further ventilation and have candlelight at night. The power we need in the restaurant is solar power for lights, music, recharging recyclable batteries.

Level 1 = four or fewer energy conservation activities

Level 2 = five or more energy conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – renewable energy: Indicate proportion (%) of energy from each source:

_x __  Solar  90 %
___  Wind
___  Hydro
_x__  Generator  : only backup
___  Public utility
Other energy sources? Please list:
100% TOTAL
How were these proportions developed?

Level 3 = renewable energy is employed and is less than 1/3 of all energy

Level 4 = renewable energy constitutes 1/3 – 2/3 of all energy

Level 5 = renewable energy constitutes 2/3 or more of all energy.

In addition, for Level 5, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record energy consumption; (2) test and apply additional energy conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific energy targets.   Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Energy Level 5 (required).

Your Energy Level (select 1 – 5) =   5

Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar Water

Levels 1 and 2 – conservation: Check all that apply:

__  low flow faucets and showerheads
__  low water use toilets
_x_  change linens, towels, tablecloths, and napkins upon request
__x_use table mats that can be wiped and not laundered
_X_  use biodegradable laundry detergent, dish soap and hand soap
__  treat swimming pool with chlorine-free processes
Other water conservation activities?  Please list.
The water comes from our own well, it is filtered and drinkable.  We have lots of water!! We don’t have a swimming pool and we minimized the size of lawn. We are mulching the plants with our own compost, so there is almost NO need to water the garden in the dry season !

Level 1 = three or fewer water conservation activities

Level 2 = four or more water conservation activities

Levels 3, 4 and 5 – capture and treat fresh water and manage waste water. Capture water: Indicate proportion (%) of water from each source:

___  spring
___  river
___  rain
___  reuse gray
___  public utility
Other water sources? Please list. Well water 100%
100% TOTAL

Fresh water treatment: how is captured fresh water treated?
__x_  naturally.  Indicate method: charcoal, ultraviolet light, other?
List:  charcoal filter
___  chemically.  List chemicals used:

Waste water management:
___  septic tanks
___  cesspools
___  other? List methods: Septic system with 3 leach fields to filter

Level 3: Water is captured (from springs, rivers, rain or prior use) and constitutes less than 1/3 of water from all sources.  Water is treated chemically.  Water disposal does not minimize damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 4:  Captured water constitutes 1/3 to 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests

Level 5:  Captured water constitutes more than 2/3 of all water.  Water is treated naturally. Water disposal minimizes damage to coral reefs and rain forests.

In addition, for Level 5, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record water consumption; (2) test and apply additional water conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific water targets.   Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Water Level 5 (required).

 

Your Water Level (select 1 – 5): 5

Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar Recycling and waste

Check all that apply:

__x_   Use durable service items, e.g. cups, glasses, dishes, tableware, storage items
__x_   Buy fresh and local to reduce packaging and emissions from transportation
__x_   Purchase in bulk to reduce packaging
__X_   Recycle paper, glass, plastic, aluminum
__x_  Minimize emissions from fossil-fuel powered vehicles, machines & equipment
___  Zero waste in the kitchen
_x__   Serve local water, not bottled water
_x__  Cleaning products are biodegradable
__X_  Compost organic matter
Other methods to recycle waste? Please list.
Nico is co founder and part of WOO, Women of the Osa, protecting the Osa from within, striving for conservation, education on ecological awareness to preserve one of the most intense reservoirs of biodiversity on Earth.  This organisation works to design, implement and aid projects with public-private partnerships to protect the Osa.  We just opened the first Recycling Center on the Osa!!  We recycle glass, plastic, aluminium, and metal.  Our guests get recyclable water bottles, and we don’t sell any beverages in cans.  We compost all food leftovers.

Level 1 = four or fewer recycling activities

Level 2 = five recycling activities

Level 3 = six recycling activities

Level 4 = seven recycling activities

Level 5 = eight or more recycling activities

In addition, for Level 5, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record recycling and waste; (2) test and apply additional recycling and waste conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific recycling and waste targets.   Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Recycling and Waste Level 5 (required).

Your Recycling and Waste Level (select 1 – 5): 5 

Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar Land and nature conservation

Check all that apply:

_x__   Minimize tree removal when building
_x__   Use only botanical (plant-based) herbicides & pesticides in garden & grounds
__x_   Maintain organic gardens as food source for resort
__X_   Use biodegradable cleaning products
_x__   Minimize external illumination
__X_  Take additional specific actions to preserve the local habitat.  Please list actions and projects:   Mark is the co founder of the Osa Bamboo Club, with supports and trains the local farmers in growing, harvesting , treating and manufacturing this excellent sustainable growing building material, Bamboo.
Also Mark is designing and constructing green, low impact bamboo houses for the local community.
We are reforesting 50% of the property with hardwood trees.
Level 1: one or two land and nature conservation activities

Level 2: three land and nature conservation activities

Level 3: four land and nature conservation activities

Level 4: five land and nature conservation activities

Level 5: six or more land and nature conservation activities

In addition, for Level 5, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record land and nature conservation activities; (2) test and apply additional land and nature conservation methods; and (3) work towards specific land and nature conservation targets.   Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Land and Nature Conservation Level 5 (required).

Your Land and Nature Conservation Level (select 1 – 5): 5

Eco Rating Ojo Del Mar Community

This category addresses policies and activities regarding staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the community.

Check all activities that apply:

_x__  Hire staff residing near the resort          80%  local nationals
_X_  Use local suppliers                                80% purchased goods produced locally
__x_  Re-invest resort income locally            80___% income re-invested locally
__x_  Pay above local prevailing wage
___  Pay into local social security
__x_  Provide health insurance or coverage
__x_  Use regular staff meetings to educate staff about sustainable processes throughout the resort, in the garden, with waste disposal, etc
__x_  Provide educational awareness programs for staff, guests, suppliers and other members of the local community
_x__  Provide sustainable transport to work for staff
___  Take additional specific actions to support the local community. Please list actions and projects.
Nico teaches English for the local workers.  Mark teaches Kung Fu and        Tai Chi for the local community. Also see “Living in the Jungle” , a handbook for sustainable living in the Osa.

Women of the Osa , WOO, sponsors and facilitates annual community “happenings” like Earthday, movie nights and  beach cleanups to raise the eco consciousness.
 
Level 1: one or two community activities

Level 2: three community activities

Level 3: four community activities

Level 4: five community activities

Level 5: six or more community activities

In addition, for Level 5, there are written sustainability policies or environmental management systems to: (1) monitor and record community activities; (2) test and apply additional methods to support the community; and (3) work towards specific community targets.   Attach a copy of your policies if you achieve Community Level 5 (required).

Your Community Level (select 1 – 5): 5

YOUR OVERALL ECO SCORE (add your level for each category and divide by 5): 5.0

Three final questions: 

  • Please describe your single most important eco achievement:

Using almost no fossil fuels ~! (less than 5%)

  • Indicate additional sustainable practices that you plan to institute within the next 6 months.

Install a biogas digester.

  • Is there anything else you would like to add to this eco rating?

Developers, investors, entrepreneurs (especially tourism and real estate agents), conservationists, NGO”s, ect. in Costa Rica and around the world, can and must SIMULTANEOUSLY enhance the existing ecological and social landscape of a country, and do so in a way that integrates the local and indigenous people in a positive way; a way that empowers them to be co-creators, entrepreneurs, and problem solvers too. We must do this if we want true sustainability and peace.
Despite sustained efforts to mobilize all human wisdom and will in defense of nature and sanity, we have yet to quench the flames that consumes our forests, or dampen the greed that stokes our excesses!!!!

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