New Smyrna Beach Area Visitors Bureau Sustainability Efforts 2019-2020
Media Contact: Courtnee Brokaw, Communications Manager
New Smyrna Beach Area Visitors Bureau
New Smyrna Beach, Florida
The New Smyrna Beach Area Visitors Bureau and its industry partners have emerged as leaders in sustainability efforts and responsible tourism after implementing a variety of eco-friendly measures and through partnerships with globally recognized programs. Local hoteliers, restaurants, attractions, and community groups are making big waves in sustainable tourism in the hopes of protecting the area’s treasures, like the Indian River Lagoon—the most biologically diverse estuary in North America, and coastal wildlife and habitats.
The New Smyrna Beach Area Visitors Bureau is a member of the prestigious Blue Community Consortium, an organization that seeks to protect oceans, coastal habitats and marine environments in Florida through implementing Blue Community and other sustainable tourism strategies. The Blue Community is recognized as the first member of the UNWTO International Sustainable Tourism Observatory network in North America. Several New Smyrna Beach tourism partners have recently achieved certification from the Blue Community:
SpringHill Suites by Marriott
this beautiful oceanfront hotel is the highest-ranking hotel in Florida within the Blue Community group. The hotel is an industry leader and has received high praise for being energy and water efficient by using eco-friendly washer-extractors, collecting runoff water on-site, and using extra insulation between floors and underground parking. SpringHill also locally sources its buffet food, eliminated plastic straws, and more.
Marine Discovery Center
this multi-faceted, Blue Community-certified organization is focused on restoring Florida’s coastal and Indian River Lagoon ecosystems through education, research, and community stewardship. The MDC offers educational tourism opportunities via its boat, walking and kayak tours. Summer camps and field trips that offer salt marsh exploration, plankton study and more are helping to educate a new generation of responsible travelers. The MDC collaborates with environmental scientists and researchers, as well as local volunteers to collect data via lagoon watch surveys, horseshoe crab nesting surveys, seagrass surveys, etc. Other initiatives include the Shuck & Share program, a recycling project that is a joint effort between MDC and local seafood restaurants. Shucked oyster shells from the restaurants are converted into new reef-building materials through volunteer efforts. The shells will be kept out of the landfill and recycled back into the natural system.
Third Wave Café
recently certified by the Blue Community, this restaurant has been on the forefront in sustainability thanks to its eco-friendly practices. Third Wave has implemented a plan that focuses on eco-friendly practices like effective water management, reduction of single-use plastics, and responsible food sourcing. The restaurant maintains active memberships in the James Beard Foundation and the Smart Catch Program. Chef David Moscoso was selected to be on the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch’s Blue Ribbon Task Force. Third Wave also hosts sustainability events like the “Chefs for Fish” dinner, beach clean-ups, and more.
Many other restaurants and hoteliers are also joining the cause in protecting marine life and coastal areas for both visitors and locals. More than 30 area restaurants have implemented sustainable strategies like eliminating plastic straws and to-go containers, sourcing foods locally, participating in the Shuck & Share program, and more. Accommodators, like Anchor Inn, Atlantic Plaza and Country Inn and Suites are involved in organizations like Clean the World, which uses leftover toiletry products to build hygiene kits for those in need. Some (Black Dolphin Inn, Anchor Inn, and Atlantic Plaza) are also members of Florida’s Green Lodging Program.
Community groups, local governments, and programs are also nurturing the area’s wildlife and resources
New Smyrna Beach Area Visitors Bureau
The NSB Area Visitors Bureau is helping lead the charge for sustainability in the community. The office uses LED lighting to reduce energy use, has eliminated plastic silverware, and staff members use refillable water bottles and metal straws. The bureau has also adopted a section of the beach and regularly schedules clean-ups.
NSB Turtle Trackers: a volunteer-based group that monitors and records nesting activity in New Smyrna Beach. The group educates the public on how to properly protect sea turtles by recycling, filling in holes on the beach, turning off lights, and more.
Keep NSB Clean: Keep NSB Clean exists to advocate for clean oceans and waterways in and around beautiful New Smyrna Beach. Through a strong and active social media and community presence, the group hopes to increase awareness about our litter crisis, educate about litter prevention strategies, inspire action, and enlist help. The group often organizes beach clean-ups.
Fill A Bag
A "Fill A Bag" station is posted at the Flagler Avenue Beachfront Park. The station is a tall, white wooden post with colorful pegs that hold buckets and reusable bags. Beachgoers are encouraged to use the buckets to collect debris during their walks, dispose of the trash, and then return the buckets to the post. Fill A Bag stations are meant to empower people to turn their daily walks into meaningful beach clean-ups.
Mermaid's Lost Treasures
A lost found toy chest is located at the entrance to the Flagler Avenue Park in New Smyrna Beach. The blue box holds "forgotten" beach toys and is also a resource for visitors in need of a toy. Plastic beach toys are then recycled instead of thrown in the trash.
City of NSB
In June of 2019, the City of New Smyrna Beach adopted a new ordinance that prohibits the sale and use of polypropylene and polystyrene foodservice products, such as styrofoam and plastic straws. The ban applies to vendors and contractors on city property. The City of New Smyrna Beach is also in talks to join the Blue Community Consortium and become a certified city under the program. The agreement requires approval from city council officials and is in process.
A debris-catching device was installed at Veterans Park in Edgewater in June of 2019. Called a WATERGOAT, the device catches trash before the water enters the Indian River Lagoon. A similar WATERGOAT was previously installed in the 18th Street Canal at 10th Street.
Green Volusia Program
A long-term initiative designed to provide residents and visitors with information about green, or sustainable, practices. Green Volusia aims to provide information about environmentally responsible practices that benefit the whole community as well as encouraging stewardship and conservation of our natural resources. Green Volusia's actions for sustainability were recognized by the Florida Green Building Coalition who awarded our re-certification as a Green Local Government in 2017.
About the New Smyrna Beach Area
The New Smyrna Beach area includes the communities of New Smyrna Beach, Edgewater, Oak Hill, Osteen and Port Orange in east Central Florida. New Smyrna Beach is an eclectic mix of old and new; of subtle sophistication and bohemian soul that is as “real” as Florida gets. It occupies a notable place in history as the second oldest city in Florida, site of the largest single attempt at British colonization in the new world. In 2018, New Smyrna Beach celebrated its 250th birthday. The city’s barrier island is recognized worldwide for its incredible surf with Surfer magazine recently touting it one of the “Best Surf Towns in America” and National Geographic magazine including it in its “World’s Top 20 Surf Towns”. Accommodations range from charming bed and breakfast inns to family-size condominium units and oceanfront hotels. Natural attractions include 17 miles of sandy beaches from Ponce de Leon Inlet to Canaveral National Seashore and North America’s most diverse estuary – the Indian River Lagoon. Two distinct downtowns along Flagler Avenue and Canal Street and connected via the Waterfront Loop welcome visitors with independent restaurants, unique shops, artisanal coffee shops, and art galleries.
For more information, please visit www.VisitNSBfl.com or call 386-428-1600.