3-Minute Interview: Mark Klaiman

The senior counselor at San Francisco’s Pet Camp, which runs solar-powered pet-boarding facilities in the Bayview and Presidio Heights, accepted the PG&E Green Business Award on Monday at City Hall as part of Small Business Week.

How has solar power worked for your business? We have more than 320 solar panels installed on our two roofs. We use solar thermal, so we use the sun to make our hot water — we have a tankless water system. And we have high volume, low-speed fans. They very slowly move huge amounts of air and only use 58 watts of power.

Are you paying less, or is this solely an effort to go green? Our power bill at the Bayview campground used to be more than $25,000 a year. Last year, it was $7,000. It’s a classic example that if you do the right thing, you can be a good business and a good environmental steward.

What made you decide to run a green business? The thing that pushed us over the edge was when during the rolling blackouts, all we were hearing from politicians in Washington was that we needed to drill for more oil in the national parks in Alaska. It was an inadequate response to us. There had to be a better answer. We think this is an investment in our future, our business and our employees.

Has Pet Camp gone green in other ways? The thing that gets people get the biggest laugh is we’re working with The City to turn our dog poop into energy. The poop has been sent to labs to be sampled to see how much energy they can produce. We also recycle, compost waste and produce very little trash. We also hope to have a small biomass facility here.

maldax@sfexaminer.com

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Competing Hayes Valley petitions reveal fractured response to tent encampments

Some business owners say they signed a ‘tent-free zone’ petition unwittingly

SF cops to vote on delayed raises amid pandemic

City officials have agreed to new pay raises for officers under a… Continue reading

Balboa Reservoir project wins approval from Board of Supervisors

Development will build 1,100 housing units on 17-acre parking lot near City College

Supervisors fear Tenderloin lawsuit settlement sets bad precedent

UC Hastings case pushed city to move more homeless residents into hotels or shelters

What California knows about Kamala Harris

More than any other vice presidential contender in a generation, Kamala Harris’… Continue reading

Most Read