by ZEENA GREGG | photo by Spark Photography

What started as the vision of one woman (Lynn Owens) in 2009, has now grown to a full-fledged committee, which has already managed to influence the culture of Scripps Ranch. Along with the support of the Scripps Ranch Civic Association (SCRA), Sustainable Scripps Ranch (SSR) exists to educate, advocate, and implement sustainable practices in energy consumption, water usage and environmental conservation.

SSR holds events ranging from talks and site visits, to fun and creative ways to “get green” as a community. “Building community connections within Scripps Ranch is just as important a green practice as recycling or saving water and energy. In December, we had a green holiday party where we awarded prizes for the most creative gifts and recycled wrappings,” said Owens. On the second Wednesday of most months, SSR invites experts to speak on a variety of topics ranging from upgrading existing home watering system to learning about clean emissions vehicles.

In addition to educational speakers, SSR also organizes site visits to various locations such as a purification plant for recycled water and an upcoming visit this April to “the greenest house in San Diego,” a dome house built of recycled materials that uses only green energy. Over the past two years SSR has also hosted water-wise landscaping tours, which feature low-water landscaping in a variety of styles of all sizes for both front and back yards. “For 2012, we’ve evolved… to a broader ‘green living’ focus. [The tour] on March 11, will include solar power, worm composting, water harvesting, and clean emission vehicles in addition to low-water decorative landscaping, an edible garden, native plants and more,” said Owens.

At the Scripps Ranch Community Fair, SSR is organizing a Green Street event, which will include a variety of non-profit as well as commercial organizations involved in sustainability. “These will include representatives from parks, environmental organizations, and public utilities which offer information and programs to save water and energy, reduce waste and protect our natural resources, as well as firms that offer technologies such as solar power and heating, energy efficient home-improvements, and hybrid vehicles to reduce our reliance on fossil-fuels. We’ll also have interesting activities for all ages,” explained Owens.