Mission Statement

The Soboba Tribal Environmental Department is committed to protecting, restoring, and enhancing natural resources on the Soboba Reservation for all tribal members past, present, and future.

What We Do

The Environmental Department works to raise awareness of all aspects of the environment. This includes solid waste issues, pollution prevention, water and air quality, conservation measures, household hazardous waste disposal, and many other areas. In addition to community outreach and education efforts such as participating in community events, the department also hosts an annual Tribal Earth Day event and community clean up days. We also conduct surface water quality testing on streams running through the reservation, collect and manage geographical data, and create programs to address environmental concerns.

An easy way to begin learning about the environment around you is to visit the United States Environmental Protection Agency website and use MyEnvironment


The Soboba Tribal Department would like to thank all Tribal Members and colleagues for such a great year. The Department wishes everyone safe and happy holidays.

The holiday season is finally upon us! With the chilly winter air nipping at our noses and the festivities this time of year brings, it gives us all the opportunity to put our greenest foot forward and make this season a more eco-friendly one. According to the U.S. EPA and CDC, Americans throw away 25% more trash between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve. This extra trash is mostly composed of food waste, shopping bags, product packaging, and wrapping paper. The holiday increase in waste adds up to a whopping 1 million tons of additional waste per week that’s sent to U.S. landfills. Check out the chart below to see other interesting holiday eco-facts including how many trees are used to supply the 8,000 tons of wrapping paper used during Christmas. Here’s a hint… it’s a lot!

So if you're thinking of a more sustainable and eco-friendlyholiday season, check out these great holiday ideas that could make your Christmas a little greener!


  1. Add Organic and Local Foods to your Holiday Feasts: support local farmers who grow sustainable meats and produce.
  2. Reuse Packaging Cartons and Shipping Materials and if possible opt for eco-friendly packing materials.
  3. Use Eco-friendly Décor: decorate for the holidays using natural festive items like living Christmas trees, pinecones, and holly berry.
  4. Use energy-saving LED holiday lights: According to one U.S. Department of Energy study, if everyone replaced their conventional holiday light strings with LEDs, at least two billion kilowatt-hours of electricity could be saved in a month. The savings would be enough to power 200,000 homes for a year!
  5. Put all your Lights on Timers for energy savings and peace of mind while you’re away.
  6. Recycle Your Old Cell phone or Tablet: Getting a new cell phone or tablet for Christmas? Not sure what to do with the old one? Now, you can drop off that old phone at any Staples store, as part of the Sierra Club cell phone recycling program or possibly sell it to one of the many buyback programs online. Each year, 130 million cell phones are thrown out, weighing approximately 65,000 tons. Recycling your old phone prevents hazardous elements like mercury, cadmium and lead from ending up in our landfills.
  7. Offset Your Holiday Travel: If you or your loved ones are traveling more than 100 miles this holiday season, try to reduce air travel whenever possible, and consider offsetting the fossil fuel pollution generated by your trip, no matter how you travel.
  8. Use fewer resources when you shop, give presents, and wrap gifts.
  9. Shop online. Take your own bags on shopping trips. Keep them in the car so they’re always available.
  10. Conserve energy when shopping by combining several trips in one, using mass transit, or carpooling.
  11. Give gifts that are durable, energy-efficient, recyclable, or made of natural products. Purchase gifts that are fair-trade, locally made or grown, or organically grown.
  12. Support your local economy by buying from local merchants, craft shows, or antique shops.
  13. Make your own gifts: knit, sew, bake, build, or create art; make calendars using your own photographs or a recipe book with favorite recipes.
  14. Give in ways that also support your community: tickets to local theater performances, concerts, sports events, local attractions; museum memberships; gift certificates for a massage at a local spa, horseback riding, or a rock-climbing lesson.
  15. Give your time and skill—coupons for household chores, meals, gardening, cleaning, window washing, car detailing, scheduled dog walks, or lessons in computer or smartphone use for senior citizens.
  16. Donate to a charity or service organization in the name of a friend of relative who supports that cause.
  17. Consider alternatives to battery-powered toys. If you must provide batteries for a gift, be sure to buy rechargeable ones. If you are giving electronics, choose energy-saving items.
  18. Use creative materials for gift wrap:
  • Scarves, fabric, handkerchiefs
  • Old maps, sheet music, advertisement
  • Reusable tins, baking pans, or other home or garden items.
  • Send email cards or make your own.
  • Buy cards made from “post-consumer” content and printed in non-toxic inks.
  • Reuse the fronts of old cards as holiday postcards or gift tags.
  • Give cards that are eco-friendly.

After the Holidays:

  • Recycle Your Christmas Tree: Each year, 10 million Christmas trees end up in the landfill. While your tree won’t fit in the recycling bin with your newspapers and bottles, you can recycle your tree. Many cities offer programs to turn your tree to mulch or wood chips. Some cities even use your old trees to do important environmental projects like streambank stabilization, check out tree recycling opportunities in your own communities.
  • You might find that you have older things that you no longer need now that you have received new gifts or you may have received gifts you just don’t want. Call and find out what your local charities and non-profit organizations need. Remember, giving to charitable organizations tends to drop off after the holidays, so keep these organizations in mind.
  • Bring used polystyrene packaging peanuts and other polystyrene packing materials to a local mailing center so that they can be reused.
  • And, of course, don’t forget to recycle all those pre-holiday catalogs, corrugated boxes, and cans and bottles from holiday get-togethers!

Check out more eco-friendly holiday tips on the CDC’s GO Green for the Holidays