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Snowbasin Resort Highlights Sustainability Efforts For Earth Day

By Megan Collins Sun Apr 22 2018 Basin Buzz, Dining & Entertainment, Snowbasin Report

Snowbasin Resort has focused on a sustainability initiative over the past 5 years, making huge strides and continuing to seek new opportunities to reduce their environmental impact. They have invested in some energy-efficient snowmaking improvements designed to use less electrical energy in production. In 2016, Snowbasin added 40 new Techno Alpin Rubis Evo low energy snowguns, bringing the current fleet to a total of 93 low energy snowguns, which use 90% less electricity than traditional snowmaking guns. In addition, Snowbasin reconstructed their snowmaking water reservoir in 2016, which allowed the snowmaking system to be 25% more efficient.  From 2014 to current Snowbasin has reduced its electric use by over 1 million kWh per year on average or an aggregate number of 6.7 million kWh for the years 2014-2017 against average kWh usage ending 2013.

Snowbasin Resort's culinary department is enhancing efforts making strides in sustainability through partnerships with sustainable operations; Uinta Brewing, Wasatch Resource Recovery, Rocky Mountain Recycling, Momentum Recycling, Qnergy, as well as utilizing local food sources when possible.  The dining department at Snowbasin has made fundamental changes to its operations by consistently using reusable wares daily in all restaurants, eliminating  all plastic wares from group business, using reusable stylish cups/mugs at outdoor functions and concerts, eliminating glass containers from the waste stream by converting almost all beer to cans and kegs, building a herb garden and hearty vegetable garden for the summer, eliminating all portion control packaging, creating menus using seasonal vegetables based on the time of the year to buy in-season, rotating seafood vendors to buy only seafood and fish from the approved seafood watch list, water reduction programs, composting vegetable waste to be used in Snowbasin Resort’s beautiful summer floral gardens, as well as active encouragement of all employees to share their thoughts and passion regarding sustainability.  Moving forward, Snowbasin will be composting more of its kitchen waste and green waste to build a much larger Snowbasin Resort employee garden with remaining kitchen waste going to Davis County to be used in an anaerobic digester to provide natural gas for thousands of homes in Utah.

Snowbasin Resort overall has added rubber and construction waste recycling programs to their multi-stream recycling and recycles 100% cardboard and bales it for use back into the marketplace as a raw material commodity. Snowbasin has retro-fitted low flush valves on all toilets and other high water use appliances as well as works with Rocky Mountain Power to actively retro-fit all lighting to low energy LED. They have actively partnered with Qnergy to have onsite efficient boilers to make hot water that also generates electricity for the resort’s use, looking to replace many more water heaters and other equipment to high efficiency, low energy, that generate electricity like the Qnergy system. Snowbasin has placed water and electrical meters on all buildings to monitor and manage use per facility, installing exterior lighting with photo eyes to come on when people walk by versus leaving lights on all night on the exterior of buildings, educates all employees of proper sort techniques in the back of house, recently purchased all new recycling containers for inside the lodges and outside in public areas, and has entered into an agreement with Rocky Mountain Recycling to divert and recycle plastic, aluminum, office paper, glass, and cardboard- all of which are being reused as raw materials. Furthermore, this past winter Snowbasin implemented a carpool lot to reward guests who drove with three or more people in their cars. These guests who carpooled had prime parking in Terrace A, the closest parking lot to the base area. 

Snowbasin Resort will keep sustainability and environmental impact front of mind and search for new ways to continue to improve in the future.

Megan Collins