Hit the slopes and help the Earth | ParkRecord.com

Hit the slopes and help the Earth

Adia Waldburger, of the Record staff

It’s easy skiing green in Utah.

Ski Utah has gotten in on the act with a "Keep Utah Cool" program, which details and promotes eco-friendly endeavors on Utah’s slopes.

Going green in Park City is already partially taken care of by the three local ski resorts.

Leading the charge is Park City Mountain Resort (PCMR), who received an A-rating from Ski Area Citizen’s Coalition for their Green Iniative. Notable environmentally friendly decisions include using renewable energy to power their chairlifts, a lighting retrofit, where energy efficient bulbs replaced old bulbs in all resort buildings and the use of china dishes rather than disposable ones. To find out more about PCMR’s green endeavors, visit http://www.saveoursnow.org.

Deer Valley and The Canyons are also doing their part to keep things green, according to the "Keep Utah Cool" program. The Canyons resort is a big contributor to the Regional Transit Authority which is trying to develop an automobile-free environment and culture in Park City and the surrounding communities. They also conduct extensive recycling efforts of vehicles, electronic equipment and everyday recyclables, as well as a myriad of other green endeavors.

Deer Valley participates in forest management to promote healthy tree growth, addressing erosion issues with reseeding and revegetation and works to preserve open space and trails throughout the resort. Deer Valley also has its own recycling senters located in all three day lodges.

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"We recycle everything," said Deer Valley Communications Manager Erin Grady.

All three participate in Rocky Mountain Power’s Blue Sky renewable energy program which allows them to buy clean, sustainable wind power.

Park City is also an ideal location for use of public transportation with a free bus system that uses 100-percent bio-diesel fuel.

But skiers can make small changes on their own. Ski Utah suggests a number of small ways to make a big difference including:

Take snow tires and ski racks off of cars at the end of the winter season to improve gas mileage. Get regular tune-ups for better gas efficiency.

Buy an energy efficient, low polluting car to drive to the slopes.

Shuttle or carpool to resorts and walk whenever possible at the resorts.

Bring your own water bottle or coffee mug for beverages on ski outings.

Buy Green Tags or Cool Tags to support wind energy. Cool Tags are available through CLIF BAR and for $2 per tag they invest in the Native Energy WindBuilders program which helps Native American communities build new wind farms. Green Tags are available through the Bonneville Environmental Foundation and are created when wind power or other renewable energy is substituted for traditional power. Visit http://www.clifbar.com and http://www.greentagusa.org for information on getting the tags.

Make energy efficient decisions at home to help the overall air quality in the community.

Write to elected officials about the importance of protecting the environment.

Going green on the ski hill is about more than doing a good thing. It’s a choice that can impacts skiers for generations. Global warming on the slopes include less snow, fewer ski days and less skiable terrain, which in turn will hurt the economy and limit recreational and entertainment options.

For more information on making a difference, visit: