Vail Resorts is working to keep Northstar snowy. (Vail Resorts/Facebook)
Vail Resorts will aggressively pursue a comprehensive sustainability commitment, called “Epic Promise for a Zero Footprint.” This undertaking commits to zero net emissions by 2030, zero waste to landfill by 2030 and zero net operating impact to forests and habitat.
"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,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts.
“Epic Promise for a Zero Footprint” comprises three pillars: emissions, waste, and forests and habitats.
Vail Resorts will achieve net zero emissions in its operations by 2030 through the following initiatives:
• Reducing electricity and natural gas use by another 15 percent – in addition to the 19 percent already achieved – by improving operating practices and investing $25 million in energy-saving projects such as low-energy snowmaking equipment, green building design and construction, and more efficient grooming practices and equipment.
• Purchasing 100 percent renewable energy equivalent to Vail Resorts’ total electrical energy use and working with utilities and local, regional and national governments to bring more renewable energy to the grids where the Company operates its resorts.
• Investing in programs such as tree planting to offset the use of other types of energy (e.g., gasoline and diesel).
• Engaging with vendors and suppliers to identify and collaborate on opportunities for them to reduce their emissions and environmental impact.
• Providing guests with opportunities to reduce or offset their carbon footprint.
Vail Resorts plans to achieve its 2030 goal of “zero waste to landfill” by diverting 100 percent of the waste from its operations to more sustainable pathways. Currently at a 40 percent waste diversion rate across its entire operations, the Company has set its sights on an interim target of diverting 50 percent of its waste by 2020. Vail Resorts plans to achieve this goal by:
• Improving its recycling and composting program.
• Engaging with vendors to reduce packaging and to source recyclable and compostable products.
• Working with local resort communities to increase options for reuse and diversion.
• Increasing awareness and engagement with employees and guests through signage, labeling and training.
To protect the spectacular mountain landscapes in which Vail Resorts operates, the Company commits to the following initiatives:
• Minimizing or eliminating the impact of any future resort development.
• Planting or restoring an acre of forest for every acre of forest displaced by operations, with the goal of achieving improved species and age diversity, resulting in healthier, more resilient forests.
• Continuing and expanding Vail Resorts’ existing commitments to partner with and fund local organizations focused on the health of forests, habitat and wildlife.