When choosing our returning spot for this year’s Living Green Expo, we went with our gut…and headed straight for the food.
I have a feeling you might, too.
This Saturday and Sunday at the State Fairgrounds, watch (and taste) live cooking demonstrations by top local chefs on the Warners’ Stellian Celebrity Chefs stage in the 4-H building, part of the Local Chefs, Local Food experience.
Chefs like Scott Pampuch of Corner Table and other favorites like Birchwood Cafe, Common Roots and Chef Shack will be cooking on stage while talking about what local food means to their cooking.
Basically, you learn about living more sustainably by visiting different Living Green Expo exhibits and collect stamps in each category. Once your challenge card is completed, drop it in our high efficiency top load LG washer (yes, I said top load washer).
Just in time for Earth Day, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman honored Warners’ Stellian with a Sustainable St. Paul Award for our efforts to reduce waste and recycle.
So, when you do your part to reduce your environmental impact by using Energy Star appliances, we do ours, by savings hundreds of tons of packaging from clogging our local landfills. Thanks to all our customers for their support in helping us make this crucial commitment.
Stainless steel can be — and is — recycled. (According to the International Stainless Steel Forum, new stainless-steel products are made from about 60 percent recycled stainless.) Its alternative, enameled steel, also is recyclable, so stainless steel isn’t significantly better or worse for the environment.
But materials aren’t all that important when trying to determine how earth-friendly home appliances are. What matters most is energy efficiency, said Lise Laurin, founder of EarthShift, a Vermont company that works with corporations and institutions on sustainability.
Of course, we recycle replaced appliances for free on most purchases, so you can feel comfortable about upgrading to stainless steel. Just make them Energy Star appliances.
I’ve compiled this “how to” guide with official info and my own words to help you through the process. Please read it in its entirety to minimize confusion.
1. Beginning 8 a.m. Monday, March 1, reserve a rebate by completing the online application form at www.MNApplianceRebate.com or by calling the program’s toll-free number at 1-877-230-9119.
Reservations can be made for one appliance only. Reservations will only be taken for categories (refrigerator, clothes washer, dishwasher or freezer only) with funds still available or if the wait list is open for reservations.
There are only about 11,000 refrigerator rebates; 6,000 rebates each for washers and dishwashers; and 2,000 rebates available for freezers.
2. Print the online application confirmation page. You will need to mail this page after you have completed your purchase with all supporting documents. Phone applicants will receive the application confirmation page by mail.
3. Purchase an eligible ENERGY STAR qualified appliance (browse our selection online, though we carry more than we display online) to replace an existing appliance from a Minnesota retail location. You don’t need to wait to receive your application by mail if you reserved a rebate by phone. You don’t need to bring in your forms at all, actually. Online purchases and purchases made before March 1, 2010 will be disqualified.*
*Our suggestion: shop now. Head to one of our 7 stores (see store locations & contact info) and our sales staff will help you choose the best eligible ENERGY STAR product for your needs and will put what we call a “quote” in our computer system with your product selection and personal information. This is not a purchase, as we’ve taken no payment. If you get your rebate reservation, all you have to do is call your salesperson with your credit card number and schedule delivery.
We anticipate a flood of calls and store visits beginning March 1, so this will hopefully speed up the process for you. We appreciate your patience throughout this process.
4. We will help you arrange to either pick up your appliances or get them delivered (delivery is free to customers in the Twin Cities metro area with a minimum purchase of $499; delivery is free after mail-in rebate to customers in the Rochester area with a minimum purchase of $499) and properly recycle the replaced appliance.
You will receive with your application from the state a “Proof of Demanufacturing” form if you are replacing a refrigerator or freezer. Our delivery crew will sign that when they take away your old appliance. You must submit that form for the increased rebate amounts ($200 for a refrigerator and $100 for a freezer; rebate amounts are half that without “Proof of Demanufacturing” because the state doesn’t want people keeping these units in use).
5. Fill out the submission form completely and make a copy for your records.
6. Mail the required materials within 30 days of the online or phone reservation.
Approved applicants will be receive by mail a rebate check to their residential address, with no exceptions. PO Boxes are not accepted. Rebates are not allowed for commercial endeavors, including owner-occupied rental properties.
The state rebate can be combined with offers from Warners’ Stellian, manufacturers, utilities, and municipalities.
Warners’ Stellian will be offering an instant $25 rebate on all products eligible for this program, as well as exclusive manufacturers’ rebates.
OK, so it’s not exactly magic, but that 2-feet-long area highlighted by the green bar is the product of those three boxes of cardboard waste. Pretty amazing, huh?
We think so. That’s our new densifier, which grinds up the bulk Styrofoam from appliance packaging and converts it into a form that can be reused as another product, while reducing it by a 20:1 ratio. Waste Management used to haul off our 40-yard waste roll-off container about every four days. Now, we’re down to about once per month!
The process is EXTREMELY labor intensive. The Styrofoam must be completely clean for the densifier to work properly. This means no tape, no staples and no cardboard pieces.
Appliance and cardboard recycling have been a part of our mission for many, many years — but we wanted to do more, my uncle Bob Warner said (he’s leading Warners’ Stellian’s recycling efforts). “We’re moving beyond recycling pop cans. Whatever we generate that we can recycle, we’re doing.”
wood (many appliances still come with wooden pallets)
plastic shrink wrap (a local nonprofit hauls it to sell for reuse. Win-win!)
plastic/metal banding (miles of it, seriously)
We’re proud of the fact that we’re WAY ahead of the curve for an independent retailer of our size.
Last month, a vice president of Frigidaire/Electrolux toured our warehouse here in St. Paul and commented that only two or three facilities on par with ours exist in the independent network nationwide.
“It’s very labor intensive to sort, and it’s not a profitable endeavor — especially at this point — for us,” Bob told me. “But the motivating factor is doing the right thing.”