Sharing a Healthy Planet

Sharing a Healthy Planet

Reducing our Environmental Footprint



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Sustainability Projects

Please give a gift to help the Zoo and Zoo Society continue to be a model in Sustainability, so that we may continue to develop and implement Zoo-wide green practices and promote sustainability throughout Northeast Ohio.

Composting & Recycling

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo's ZooPoo Compost is a natural soil amendment made from animal manure, straw bedding, wood shavings and other organic matter.

The Zoo has a successful on-site recycling and composting program. We process thousands of cubic yards of manure (from herbivorous animals such as elephants, giraffes, and rhinos), hay, straw, woodchips, and plant material each year. The resulting “Zoo Poo” is used throughout the Zoo and is also available for public purchase to benefit the composting program.

On-site recycling efforts include appliances, batteries, cardboard, cell phones, computer equipment, fluorescent lamps, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL), glass, inkjet & toner cartridges, metals, aluminum cans, pallets, batteries, paper, phonebooks, plastic, tires & vehicle waste. Recycling containers placed throughout the Zoo collect plastic containers, glass bottles, and aluminum cans from visitors and, concession vendors also participate in Zoo recycling and composting efforts. Visitors can bring recyclable materials to the Zoo any time during regular park hours. Compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs), cell phones, cell phone batteries and accessories, and inkjet and toner cartridges are all accepted at the recycling exhibit in the Zoo Exhibit Hall. A community-wide paper recycling program collects office/school papers, newspapers, magazines, and phone books at designated “drop-off” sites on Zoo property. The Zoo is continually working to expand efforts in managing waste and is currently integrating food waste into the composting program.

LEEDing the Way with African Elephant Crossing

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo’s African Elephant Crossing exhibit is Gold certified through the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building certification program. The LEED program is the nationally accepted construction industry standard for green buildings, administered by the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED certification is based on a point scale assigned to various criteria in the design, construction and operation of the facility and involves standards for energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.

Some highlights about the project:

  • More than 90% of construction waste was recycled and diverted from the landfill.
  • About a third of the construction materials used came from recycled materials.
  • The water filtration system cuts water usage by 72%.
  • Innovative air systems reclaim over 75% of the heat from exhaust air.
  • Sustainability is a key component of exhibit graphics and programs.

Working Together

The Zoo is a participating member in the Cleveland Green Venues Initiative and the Ohio Zoos Green Consortium. Both groups support and enhance environmental sustainability and promote collaborative efforts among institutions. The goals are to foster information sharing, mentoring and peer-based learning, and provide leadership and promote sustainability in the region and the state. All institutions involved are working to lead by example and engage the community in green practices.

Cans for Conservation

The Cans for Conservation program was conceived in the spirit of sustainability. The Zoo collects and recycles aluminum cans on grounds and also encourages visitors to collect and bring aluminum cans for targeted can drives held throughout the year and at special Zoo events. The funds generated from aluminum can recycling at the Zoo support regional and international habitat and wildlife conservation projects.

The Zoo Isn't Just for Kids!

The Zoo Isn't Just for Kids!

Along with VIP membership, we host a variety of exciting and fun adult-only evening events.

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Adopt an Animal

Adopt an Animal

Adopt an Animal and provide the best possible care for the animals that call Cleveland Metroparks Zoo "home."

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