EPA Honors Chumash Casino’s Conservation

Resort Earns WasteWise Tribal Partner of the Year

The Chumash Casino Resort announced last week it was named the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s 2015 WasteWise Tribal Partner of the Year. The casino, owned and operated by the Santa Ynez Valley Band of Chumash Indians, was among 15 businesses and organizations across the country the EPA honored on January 21 for “outstanding leadership in waste prevention and diversion, as measured in 2014,” read the resort’s February 2 press release. This was the second such accomplishment for the casino, which won the award for the first time in 2012.

Ten years ago, the Chumash Casino generated 380,000 pounds of trash every month and recycled 3 percent, said the press release. According to resort custodial services manager Mark Funkhouser, the number has dropped to 300,000, with almost two-thirds being recycled. “We’re honored that the EPA has recognized Chumash Casino Resort for our efforts to reduce waste,” said Tribal Chairman of the Santa Ynez Valley Band of Chumash Indians Vincent Armenta. “Our facilities department has made great strides in recent years, and its goal to make Chumash Casino Resort a zero-waste facility by 2019 is within reach.”

The casino had previously joined the EPA’s WasteWise program and began setting annual goals to reduce waste. Since 1994, the federal program has helped its partners implement sustainable waste management.

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Pair of F-22s Buzz Santa Barbara City College

Turbulence rattles windows and nerves on Monday morning.

Mandatory Evacuation Called for Fire Zones in Santa Barbara County

Heavy rains expected Tuesday-Thursday; debris flows feared.

Cannabis Farmer Gets Over $1 Million Insurance Payout

Thomas Fire ash destroys crop; analysis finds asbestos, lead, arsenic, and magnesium.

Next Debris Flow Could Take Different, Unknown Path

"I've never seen this degree of hazard," says Cal Fire scientist.

Biggest Storm Since 1/9 Approaching Santa Barbara

The storm system brings increased threat of flash floods and debris flows.