Success Story: Madison Avenue Garage
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Madison Avenue Garage
11216 Sunrise Dr NE, Bainbridge Island, WA 98110
(206) 842-4026

At Madison Avenue Garage on Bainbridge Island, extra steps are in place to prevent pollution and reduce waste. In addition to the basic good practices of storing hazardous waste in secondary containment, properly disposing of hazardous waste, and training employees in safe chemical handling, most cleaners used at this 4-Star certified shop are non-chlorinated and non-hazardous.

"I would like to see everyone do their part, not just businesses but homeowners as well," owner Ranji Dhatt says. "Some of the smallest, yet cost-effective things, whether it's recycling, cleaning up, using environmentally friendly products or simply repairing fluid leaks in your vehicle, can collectively make a significant impact."

Be a part of the Solution to Pollution: Choose EnviroStars certified auto repair shops

EnviroStars is a widely respected, environmental certification program that businesses qualify for voluntarily. Consumers who use EnviroStars certified repair shops can be confident that they are supporting environmentally responsible businesses whose shops and practices have been reviewed and rated by a local government technical advisor.

The problem
Eighty-nine percent of residents surveyed in Washington state say they are concerned about hazardous and toxic wastes in the environment, but many of them may not be thinking about their own transportation as being part of the problem. Vehicles that are not regularly maintained can have oil leaks - a major cause of water pollution. Routine maintenance is good for the environment, increases fuel efficiency and helps prevent more costly repairs.

However, in providing this service hazardous materials are used and wastes are produced - if not properly handled, they can have a big impact.

Why it matters
The problem doesn't just affect marine life - clean water is essential to the economy in our state and to people's health in our communities.

Oils and other hazardous materials are carried by stormwater runoff and end up in lakes, rivers and streams, or groundwater. Stormwater run-off is the main cause of water pollution in urban areas in our state including the Duwamish River, Puget Sound, and the Spokane Aquifer. On any given day, about a third of Washington's waters don't meet water-quality standards.

Did you know that just one pint of oil can create a slick larger than the size of a football field - and Americans spill or leak 180 million gallons of used car oil every year according to the US Environmental Protection Agency. Those drips add up!

How EnviroStars helps
EnviroStars certified auto shops place a high value on environmentally responsible practices, and they work with EnviroStars consultants to make their businesses greener.

More than 180 mechanical-repair, collision-repair and detailing shops are currently EnviroStars certified in King, Kitsap, Jefferson, Pierce, Skagit, Spokane, and Whatcom counties. These shops are going beyond just following regulations -- for example by switching to water-based cleaners instead of using hazardous solvents, reclaiming antifreeze, and heating their facilities with used motor oil.

Look for EnviroStars shops offering special service incentives during the “Don’t Drip & Drive” campaign, to test 10,000 vehicles for fluid leaks. For more information on this program and free classes to help you identify leaks, go to www.fixcarleaks.org/

Reach for the Stars: EnviroStars
Look for the EnviroStars decal in the windows of local businesses, or look in our online directory to find a certified repair shop in your neighborhood. If your repair shop does not have an EnviroStars certification, don't be afraid to ask the business about the practices it uses. Increased consumer interest serves as an incentive for businesses to consider safer alternatives.

Click here for a complete list of EnviroStars businesses - for all kinds of services from dentists to dry cleaners to landscapers to printers, or to find out more about certification for your business.