2861 Mission Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 (Room 247) sustainablesystemsresearch@gmail.com 831.708.5836
112

Programs

Learn more about how we give back!

“a crying need for research, education, and advocacy”

We strive to be an active supporter of our community’s goals to become more sustainable and just. In addition to providing fiscal, managerial, and operational support to local projects, we also offer a number of programs focused on the needs of the community, individuals and local organizations and businesses, as well as faculty, students and staff at UC Santa Cruz. If you are interested in collaborating with us, or learning more about our programs, please contact us.

Waste Not, Want Not

“Waste Not, Want Not” is an initiative to work with the University of California and the City and County of Santa Cruz to address the region’s looming waste management challenge.  SSRF seeks to act as an interlocutor and facilitator of coordination between actors in designing and costing out a comprehensive waste management plan for the region, identifying financing options and writing proposals to pay for the plan, and developing management and governance tools for plan implementation. You can find out more about this program here.

Accessory Dwelling Units in Our Backyards (ADUBs)

ADUBs is a new initiative), in collaboration with the “No Place Like Home” project in the UCSC Sociology Department, to develop an ADU-based affordable housing strategy for Santa Cruz and its surroundings.  These units do not require costly new land acquisition or infrastructure, because the homeowner already owns the construction site and utilities are available from the main house.  The construction footprint is small, loan costs are affordable, the unit can provide a respectable return on investment. Here is a recent guest commentary in the Santa Cruz Sentinel and a prospectus of the project.

Waste Audit Service

In collaboration with the GoGreen Initiative in Pleasanton, California, SSRF is planning to establish a commercial service that plans that will audit flows of goods and materials into public facilities, private homes and businesses, and flows and categories of wastes that flow out, a “cradle-to-grave.” analysis of these flows, and an individualized source reduction plan

Sustainable Urban Food Initiative (SUFI)

SUFI involves design and installation of sustainable, replicable, affordable, high-performance, solar powered hydroponics systems for placement with local schools, community centers, and non-profit agencies. In conjunction with SUFI, we also are offering partnerships to install solar photovoltaic systems with hydroponic units at educational and institutional gardens around the county (clink on the links for more information).

Sustainability Project Design & Proposal Writing

Our workshops are targeted to students and members of the public interested in launching green projects and social enterprises.  These events help participants to conceptualize a project and its goals and objectives; identify a constituency; assess project feasibility;  develop a business plan and project management infrastructure; develop funding and logistical project support; and implement project performance metrics. 

Green Incubator

SSRF makes workspace spaces available to local students seeking advice and support in creating and launching green projects and enterprises. Through contacts and collaborations with other agencies, businesses and organizations, the Green Incubator provides intellectual, technical and development assistance and contacts to foster a successful launch.

Solar Equipment Program

The City of Santa Cruz has generously donated hundreds of solar panels and dozens of inverters to SSRF. These panels previously powered the Santa Cruz Street Maintenance building. The city has decided to replace them with newer, more efficient models, but this equipment is still in great working condition. In partnership with local solar installers, we are offering this equipment to community members. All are welcome to apply, but we are currently prioritizing those who wish to use the equipment for charitable, educational, social business, or research purposes. If you are interested in exploring a collaboration with SSRF, please contact us.

Hydroponics Program

We have enough hydroponics equipment available to produce nearly 2 tons of food per year, and are offering this equipment to community members. We can also provide installation and training for applicants who are unfamiliar with hydroponic systems. All are welcome to apply, but we are currently prioritizing those who wish to use the equipment for charitable, educational, social business, or research purposes. If you are interested in exploring a collaboration with SSRF, please contact us.