Chef Tony’s owner Tony Marciante knows small restaurant owners don’t typically have much extra time to spend tinkering with things like LED lightbulbs and composting.
So Marciante is getting together with Bethesda Green to create what he said is a low-pressure, low-stress group of Bethesda restaurateurs dedicated to making their restaurants more energy efficient and less wasteful.
Marciante is looking for founding members for GRAB (the Green Restaurant Association of Bethesda) for an inaugural meeting next month and a number of events to get the group off the ground.
In Bethesda, known for its restaurants perhaps as much as anything else, Marciante said the group could help make significant green improvements with some small changes.
“The reality is, the greater benefit is from small restaurants doing a little bit, because there are more small restaurants that probably aren’t doing anything,” Marciante said. “One of the things is this isn’t a maniacal, all-or-nothing type deal. It’s really just trying to collect whoever is willing to listen and show them the benefits of going green, of making some strides in that direction.”
Marciante said he recently learned of a financing program with Pepco that will allow him to swap out old equipment for five pieces of new, energy efficient equipment.
Bethesda Green lists a number of ways — tax breaks, incentives, biofuel, waste oil and smart purchasing included — restaurants can be more green and cut costs.
“Anything is good. My two cents in the whole thing is this stuff is important, but we’re hoping to just make some strides in that direction,” Marciante said.