Department of Environmental Conservation

D E C banner

Becoming a NYGB Member

  1. Guidance Documents
  2. Open Enrollment Period
  3. General Membership Information
  4. Entry Requirements
    1. Generic Entry Requirements
    2. Brewery Requirements
    3. Garment Cleaner Requirements
    4. Restaurant Requirements
  5. Membership Benefits
  6. Membership Responsibilities
  7. Terminating Membership

I. Guidance Documents

This page provides a general overview of the NYGB program and how to become a member. For more detailed information please see these guidance documents:

II. Open Enrollment Period

An open enrollment period will be announced each year. The 2017 enrollment period is currently taking place and applications are being accepted until the close of business on December 15th.

III. General Membership Information

NYGB is a free and voluntary program managed by the Department of Environmental Conservation. NYGB membership is based on the individual facility that is applying and does not apply to an entire corporate entity's operations. Once accepted into NYGB membership lasts for three years. A facility can renew their membership at the end of their three year membership period as long as they are in compliance with NYGB requirements and submit a renewal application.

IV. Entry Requirements

Any business or entity that wishes to become a member of NYGB must submit the generic application, EXCEPT for breweries, restaurants, and garment cleaners. These businesses must complete the specific application for their sector and cannot use the generic application.

  1. Generic Entry Requirements - generic application (PDF, 111 KB)
    1. Have a good record of compliance with federal, state, local, and tribal environmental laws and regulations. The compliance criteria can be found in the NYGB Guidance Document (PDF, 184 KB)
    2. Have a written sustainability statement that affirms the businesses commitment to operating in a more sustainable manner.
    3. Make future sustainability commitments. Large facilities (more than 100 employees at the facility) must make 3 commitments and small facilities (fewer than 100 employees at the facility) must make 2 commitments.
    4. Have a sustainability outreach and in reach plan to engage customers and employees with the business's sustainability commitment.
  2. Brewery Requirements - brewery application (PDF, 135 KB)
    1. Have a good record of compliance with federal, state, local, and tribal environmental laws and regulations.
    2. Have a written sustainability statement that affirms the brewery's commitment to operating in a more sustainable manner.
    3. Meet the basic entry requirements that are laid out in the application and guidance documents (PDF, 1.47 MB).
    4. Commit to future sustainability commitment(s). Breweries that hold microbrewery, farm brewery, or restaurant brewery licenses must make one sustainability commitment while breweries that hold a traditional brewery license must make two.
    5. Have a sustainability outreach and in reach plan to engage customers and employees with the brewery's sustainability commitment.
  3. Garment Cleaner Requirements - garment cleaner application (PDF, 93014 KB)
    1. Have a good record of compliance with federal, state, local, and tribal environmental laws and regulations.
    2. Have a written sustainability statement that affirms the restaurant's commitment to operating in a sustainable manner.
    3. Meet the garment cleaning process requirements that are laid out in the application and guidance documents (PDF, 684 KB).
    4. Have a sustainability outreach and in reach plan to engage customers and employees with the garment cleaner's sustainability commitment.
  4. Restaurant Requirements - restaurant application (PDF, 110 KB)
    1. Have a good record of compliance with federal, state, local, and tribal environmental laws and regulations.
    2. Have a written sustainability statement that affirms the restaurant's commitment to operating in a sustainable manner.
    3. Meeting the basic entry requirements that are laid out in the application and guidance documents.
    4. Unless you're a member of the Green Restaurant Association (link leaves DEC website), you must commit to one future sustainability commitment.
    5. Have a sustainability outreach and in-reach plan to engage customers and employees with the restaurant's sustainability commitment.

V. Membership Benefits

Members of NYGB enjoy the following benefits:

  • Recognition from DEC in the form of press releases, a page on the NYGB website, and visibility at events
  • The ability to market yourself as an environmental leader
  • Becoming a priority for certain New York State technical assistance programs
  • Gain access to a NYEL contact within DEC to assist in your communications with the Department
  • Assistance meeting your sustainability goals from the NYS Pollution Prevention Institute (link leaves DEC website)

VI. Membership Responsibilities

While participating in NYGB, members must carry out the following responsibilities:

  • Make progress towards your performance commitments
  • Complete and submit an Annual Performance Report by March 1st each year
  • Host a site visit from NYGB staff once during your three year membership period
  • Execute and adhere to your sustainability communications plan

If a member of NYGB does not meet their responsibilities as a member they may be terminated from the program.

VII. Terminating Membership

Membership in NYGB is voluntary and a NYGB member that wishes to terminate their membership may do so at any time by contacting their NYGB contact person and stating their intention to terminate their membership. After a follow up to confirm their desire to terminate their membership, the member will no longer be in NYGB.