This Earth Day, Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows Signs “Business Backs Low-Carbon USA” Statement and Celebrates Banner Year for Sustainable Action

Category: Press Release

For Immediate Release

Media Contacts:
Liesl Kenney
Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows
(530) 452-7111 or lkenney@squawalpine.com


[Olympic Valley, Calif.] April 22, 2016 – Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is celebrating this Earth Day as a signatory to the “Business Backs Low-Carbon USA” statement in support of a clean energy economy and the historic climate change agreement reached in Paris, which will be signed by world leaders today at the United Nations in New York City. Support of the statement follows a season of groundbreaking sustainable action for the resort, including work on a regional clean power coalition to supply renewable energy to the area, eliminating the sale of disposable water bottles on site, and providing free premium parking for skiers and riders that carpool to the resort with four or more people. These activities fall in alignment with the Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows commitment to environmental stewardship and raising awareness about the impacts of climate change.

“We have been hard at work on changing the way we consume energy at a company and regional level,” said Andy Wirth, president and CEO of Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows. “Our work with the regional clean power coalition and the Sierra Club of California and the Sierra Club of Nevada has positioned our area to become one of the most progressive power grids in the country, and on-site initiatives like Drink Mtn Tap and POW Parking are making it simpler for our guests to have a low impact while visiting us. Signing on to the Business Backs Low-Carbon USA statement is yet another way to tell our communities, our business peers and our leaders that we need this kind of work to continue on a global scale.”

Business Backs Low-Carbon USA
Ceres, We Mean Business, the World Wildlife Fund, the Business Council for Sustainable Energy, C2ES, EDF, Environmental Entrepreneurs, and several other organizations called on businesses to collectively encourage the swift transition to a low-carbon global economy and to congratulate U.S. and world leaders on the successful Paris Agreement. This call took shape as the Business Backs Low-Carbon USA agreement, which Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows signed along with other companies in the United States. By signing the agreement, the resort agrees to support following:

•    The swift implementation of the Clean Power Plan and other related low-carbon policies so that we may meet or exceed our promised national commitment and increase our future ambition
•    Investments in the low carbon economy at home and abroad giving financial decision-makers clarity and boosting the confidence of investors worldwide

Leading a Regional Clean Power Coalition
In 2013, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, led by President and CEO Andy Wirth, joined with Protect Our Winters (POW) and Sierra Club of California to approach power provider Liberty Utilities about removing coal as an energy source for the region and replacing it with renewable sources. The coalition was fully in support when on January 1, 2016, Liberty Utilities rolled out their new five-year power purchase agreement with NV Energy, which excludes coal from its power mix. Liberty Utilities recently broke ground on its first ever solar project, a 50 megawatt solar array near Luning, Nevada, that will supply 25 percent of its customers’ energy needs by completion later this year.

Motivating Carpool Behavior with POW Parking
Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows recently partnered with Protect Our Winters (POW) to launch POW Parking: free premium parking for guests who carpool to the resort with four or more passengers in the vehicle. Evaluating the top ten geographic areas with the highest concentration of passholders, if just 20% of this group carpooled to the resort with a total of four people in the vehicle (as opposed to the current average of just over two), seasonal emissions would be reduced by 758 metric tons of carbon dioxide. This emissions savings is the equivalent of driving 1.8 million miles, electrifying 104 homes for one year, or burning 85,293 gallons of gasoline. In one year, a 20% passholder participation rate would remove 657 vehicles from the road. Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows will gather data from participating carpool vehicles to track total emissions saved and learn more about how best to promote the use of carpools.

Reducing Water Bottle Waste with Drink Mtn Tap
With the new Drink Mtn Tap program, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows became the first domestic ski resort to discontinue the sale of disposable water bottles, and has already saved 58,000 plastic water bottles this season to date. The resort now offers visitors reusable water bottles for purchase at the same price point as disposable bottles, and over 20 new water refill stations across both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows. Drink Mtn Tap employs the notion of “fresh taste without waste:” guests can take advantage of free, great-tasting mountain tap water without contributing to the waste stream. This initiative aims to inspire guests to rethink their daily habits by choosing reusable products over single-use items, while reducing the total amount of plastic waste generated by the resort each year. The Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows refillable bottles have a slim, flexible design to fit easily in a jacket pocket for on-the-slopes hydration, and feature scenic photographs of each respective mountain, reminding users of the magnificent natural beauty that they are helping to protect.

Protecting the Local Environment $1 at a Time with Green Bucks
Since its inception in the 2013-14 ski season, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows and its guests have raised a total of $81,534 for the Tahoe Fund and Truckee River Watershed Council through the Green Bucks program. Guests can choose to donate an extra dollar with lift ticket, season pass or food and beverage purchases, and generated $48,000 in the 2015-16 season.

About Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows
Voted 2016 ‘Best Ski Resort’ in North America by USA Today and 10Best Readers’ Choice, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is an internationally renowned mountain resort in North Lake Tahoe that spans over 6,000 skiable acres. The resort features slopeside lodging at The Village at Squaw Valley®, which bustles year round with nonstop events and nearly 60 bars, restaurants and boutiques. With an annual average of 450 inches of snowfall and 300 sunny days, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows is known as the spring skiing capital as it provides one of the longest ski and snowboard seasons in Lake Tahoe. Over 65 percent beginner and intermediate terrain and 14 easy-to-navigate mountain zones welcome skiers and riders of all ability levels. Visit squawalpine.com or call 1.800.403.0206 to learn more.

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