What Moves Us
Long before global warming became a household term, before most companies started touting corporate green initiatives, Whistler Blackcomb learned a hard lesson on the impacts of poor environmental performance. What began with an apology grew into one of the most dynamic efforts at sustainability planning in the ski resort industry and spurred the motivation to become a leader in the pursuit of sustainable operations. For us, the catalyst was a diesel spill in 1992 that polluted a mountain stream. An ecological tragedy that had us scrambling to clean up the mess and to look at the issues that led to the spill. This early wake-up call drove us to partner with our staff, our guests and our community to find ways to reduce our environmental footprint while continuing to provide the best mountain experiences on the planet. We have a long way to go but we believe that these continued partnerships will help us reach our goal of Zero Operating Footprint.
Zero Operating Footprint
Since 2000, we have reduced our waste by more than 60%. Between 2008 and 2009 alone, we saw waste reduced by 42% in our restaurants through the implementation of large-scale composting at our large facilities. If we purchase with the end in mind, reduce packaging, disposables, recycle and compost, we can reach zero waste. We have reduced our energy consumption by 15% and continue to implement energy efficiency projects across our operations.
In 2010, a micro hydro renewable energy plant situated in the middle of Whistler Blackcomb underneath Peak to Peak Gondola built through a partnership began production. The project returns to the grid the equivalent of Whistler Blackcomb's annual demand. Not only is a Zero Operating Footprint possible, it represents good business. Today, our sustainability programs return over $750,000.00 in savings to our bottom line and help to improve efficiency and employee and guest satisfaction.
Key Result Areas
Whistler Blackcomb is committed to minimizing our consumption of fuel and electricity through behavioral changes, retrofits and clean technologies with a focus on assisting guest and resort community reductions.
2. Mountain Ecosystems
By identifying and protection of special places on the mountains, Whistler Blackcomb encourages a respectful relationship between the experiences of our guests with the health of the mountain ecosystem. We will continue to move beyond mitigation to take a restorative role with our mountain ecosystems by improving our operating procedures and design of projects.
Through responsible purchasing, innovative waste solutions, reuse and recycling, Whistler Blackcomb will strive for zero waste
4. Awareness and Education
Whistler Blackcomb strives to provide as many entry points as possible for our staff and our guests to learn about sustainability and opportunities to participate.
5. Social Involvement
We see Whistler Blackcomb as a community within a community. As such, we try to be active partners and ensuring open communication, cooperation and having a positive impact.
6. Environmental Awards
At Whistler Blackcomb, we are grateful for the recognition we have received for our efforts in working toward sustainability.
7. Environmental Team
Meet the Whistler Blackcomb Environmental team