Vail Resorts, Inc., announced today an “Epic Promise for a Zero Footprint”— meaning, as the premier ski resort chain describes it in a public statement posted on its website, “…zero net emissions by 2030, zero waste to landfill by 2030 and zero net operating impact to forests and habitat.”
And Colorado Democratic U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet followed shortly afterward with a bit of applause. As quoted in a statement released by his press office:
“Colorado businesses continue to lead the fight against climate change because they know how important clean energy and conservation efforts are to growing our economy and protecting the planet for our children … We applaud Vail Resorts on this impressive commitment to tackle climate change from multiple angles — from reducing emissions and waste to protecting our forests. It is because of leadership like this throughout our state that Colorado is the epicenter of outdoor recreation.”
That pretty much echoed the sentiments of Vail Resorts Chairman and CEO Rob Katz, included in the company’s statement:
“Everything we do at Vail Resorts is driven by the spectacular natural surroundings where our employees, guests and communities live, work and play. The environment is our business, and we have a special obligation to protect it … Through improved business practices, capital investment and continued innovation and environmental stewardship, we are setting a goal of achieving a zero net operating footprint by 2030. With our ‘Epic Promise for a Zero Footprint’, Vail Resorts is both doing the right thing for the environment and for our business.”
The company elaborates:
“Epic Promise for a Zero Footprint” comprises three pillars: emissions, waste, and forests and habitats, with a thoughtful approach to each that was developed in consultation with leading sustainability experts in the industry.
The company plans to achieve its vision through wide-ranging measures, including using less power and natural gas; recycling and composting more, and “Planting or restoring an acre of forest for every acre of forest displaced by the Company’s operations … ”
Vail Resorts also spun off a separate website, epicpromise.com, to tout its new green agenda. It includes a video of Katz and others holding forth on the effort.
The 30,000-employee Vail Resorts includes ski areas in namesake Vail as well as Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood near Lake Tahoe on the California-Nevada border; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Perisher in Australia; Stowe in Vermont; Wilmot Mountain in Wisconsin; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan.