Vail Resorts is on track to reach a zero net operating footprint by 2030
The American mountain resort company that owns Whistler Blackcomb has just released its 2019/20 EpicPromise Progress Report, outlining its progress towards milestones in mitigating the impact of climate change across all 37 of its resorts.
50 percent waste diversion milestone
Vail Resorts has reached a milestone of 50 percent waste diversion, marking significant progress towards achieving zero waste to landfill. This milestone was reached nine months ahead of schedule.
Vail's efforts in this initiative include reducing landfill waste and increasing composting and recycling across its resorts. Key projects include new waste sorting systems and collaboration with local partners to support improved composting and recycling infrastructure as well as an ongoing partnership with Eco-Products to eliminate all conventional single-use plastics.
Investments towards being 93 percent powered by renewable electricity by 2023
The ski conglomerate has also made major investments towards being 93 percent powered by renewable electricity by 2023, leading up to its goal of 100 percent by 2030.
This goal is set to be achieved primarily through the use of two renewable energy initiatives: the Plum Creek Wind project, from which Vail is committed to purchasing 310,000 MWhs of clean energy annually for 12 years, as well as the newly signed Elektron Solar project, an 80 MW solar project 60 miles west of solar energy. This solar farm will provide renewable energy for 100 percent of Park City Mountain’s electric usage, which is America’s largest ski resort.
Community and employee investment
Despite the challenging circumstances caused by the pandemic, Vail remains committed to supporting and investing in its employees and communities. The company has donated more than 50,000 pounds of food from its resorts to benefit local food banks, schools and community organizations in the mountain towns where it operates. The company has also donated $20 million in EpicPromise grants to community organizations and its employees.
“Despite this year’s unexpected challenges due to COVID-19, our values have not wavered,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. “That includes Do Good, our commitment to preserving the environment and supporting our employees and the communities in which we operate. We’ve made great strides in reaching our bold sustainability goals, including perhaps our most challenging pillar of Commitment to Zero—zero waste to landfill. Across the company, it has been an inspiration to watch our employees stay focused on achieving our sustainability goals while working hard to keep our guests and each other safe.”
Commitment to zero
Vail Resorts’ Commitment to Zero sustainability goal, which was announced in 2017, includes the following three pillars:
- Zero net emissions by 2030 with 50 percent progress toward this goal by 2025
- Zero waste to landfill by 2030 and increasing waste diversion to 50 percent by the end of 2020
- Zero net operating impact on forests and habitat.
For more information, visit Vail Resorts’ EpicPromise Progress Report for the 2019 - 2020 Season.