Golden Eagle Awards
The Golden Eagle Awards
for Environmental Excellence
Established in 1993, these are the highest honors bestowed on a resort for environmental performance.
Congratulations to the 2020 Golden Eagle Award finalists
Winners will be announced at the National Convention and Tradeshow, May 4-7, 2020
Golden Eagle Award for Environmental Excellence
Bridger Bowl Ski Area (MT)
Bridger Bowl leads by example, and seeks innovative ways to support sustainability across its unique operation. When it comes to climate change solutions, we’re going to need them all – and Bridger has not only adopted many of them, but has done so in a big way. Their on-site, 50 kWh solar array at mid-mountain will offset 3% of its annual energy usage, including powering the beginner lift and snowmaking in that area. They’re increasing their landfill diversion rates by adding composting and reducing reliance on non-compostable, single-use items. Their team also tirelessly advocates for climate action at the local, state and national level, producing op-eds and receiving editorial media coverage, engaging with legislators and their local utility boards, and hosting education events to inspire their guests and neighbors to take bold steps toward a sustainable future
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort (WY)
Jackson Hole has elevated its sustainability program to rival its big mountain terrain, as the ski area invests today for long-term projects that will benefit the resort – and its local community – well into the future. The resort’s commitment to eliminating its carbon emissions is evident in the recent 10-year wind PPA, the commitment to auditing the efficiency of its mechanical and technological fleets, and the effort to modify its supply chain. Jackson Hole has committed both the human and financial capital to reduce GHG emissions by 66 percent in one year across the resort.
SilverStar Mountain Resort (BC)
When it became part of the Powdr family, SilverStar Mountain Resort’s sustainability efforts aligned with the parent company’s “Play Forever” initiative. SilverStar’s comprehensive Environmental Stewardship Program commits to reducing the resort’s impact, including programs for water use reduction, improved energy efficiency, waste diversion and stewardship of the local ecosystem. Every aspect of its operation is involved, from mountain operations to food and beverage to guest services. The resort implements a combination of inward ad public-facing initiatives, constantly employing new technologies to improve the efficiency of its fleets and buildings, and engaging its guests to be part of the sustainability solution by working to change consumptive behavior.
Climate Change Impact Award
SilverStar Mountain Resort (BC)
SilverStar Mountain Resort’s comprehensive sustainability program includes several on-site and guest-facing projects that contribute to lower carbon emissions and overall positive impact on our climate. One hundred percent of the resort’s lifts run on hydro electric energy, and its mountain ops fleets have been consistently updated to the latest low- or no-emission technologies. Their efforts also stand to influence and reward positive guest behavior with its Ride Share program, EV charging stations and resource reduction campaigns in its lodging properties.
Founded in 2016, Snowbird’s R.I.D.E. program (Reducing Individual Driving for the Environment) has evolved into the premier ride-share app and reward program for ski areas. This program empowers the resort’s guests to take action to reduce their personal carbon emissions, and has been adopted by neighboring ski areas to widen the positive impact. The R.I.D.E. program and its 5000 users have contributed to keeping nearly 300,000 lbs of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. The program achieves three goals: guest engagement, behavioral change and a positive impact on our environment.
Whiteface Mountain (NY)
Whiteface Mountain has shifted to 100% renewable energy with the installation of a 9,000-panel solar array. The ski area has committed to a 25-year PPA that will power all of its operations, and prevent over 43 million pounds of carbon emissions from entering the atmosphere. This step is just one in many Whiteface is making to improve sustainability across its operation, and commit to a renewable energy future.
Innovation in Sustainability Award
Bridger Bowl Ski Area (MT)
Bridger Bowl Ski Area is a sustainability leader for both skiing and the state of Montana. They’re completing big projects thanks to resort-wide support: a new interdepartmental Green Team, the installation of a 50 kWh solar array, the introduction of composting, participation in NSAA’s Climate Challenge, and continuing advocacy efforts. But one of the most interesting projects is the ski area’s vertical flow wetlands project. The multi-year project, over a decade in the making, was conceived and implemented in conjunction with Montana State University. Not only did the project bring an innovative and environmentally-friendly water treatment process to the ski area, it produced a valuable research opportunity for students who worked on the project.
Copper Mountain Resort (CO)
Vegetation management can be often overlooked as a path toward excellence in sustainability. Copper Mountain Resort confronted sustainability at a micro level by supporting biodiversity on its slopes by gathering seed from native plants, and using that to restore native vegetation across the mountain. This carefully evaluated, multi-stage collection and restoration plan will contribute to increased capacity for carbon storage, and ensuring a healthy ecosystem for generations to come.
Crystal Mountain Resort (WA)
Joshua Rubenstein and the team at Crystal Mountain Resort are not only taking steps to improve on-site sustainability, but they are actively shaping the next generation of sustainability heroes. The High School Climate Keepers program provides experiential education focusing on the climate crisis to 22 students at a local high school. The curriculum educates students about the science and impacts of climate change; allows them to cultivate a love for the places that are impacted; and teaches them the skills to effectively lower carbon emissions in their own lives. Additionally, the ski area is partnering with the Muckleshoot Tribe to present a four-week program for their students focused on climate and business.
Hero of Sustainability
A Hero of Sustainability is a ski area employee, manager or owner who goes the extra mile and makes an impact – big or small – that influences ski area policy, employee action, or resort guest action toward improved sustainability.
Nathalie Dandoy, Station Mont Tremblant (PQ)
Nathalie has spearheaded sustainability programs at her ski area since 2007, leading the charge on waste reduction and sustainable development. She has guided her company through several third-party auditing processes, including Quebec’s Ecoresponsible program, which requires coordination and buy-in among multiple departments. Most recently, Nathalie’s work has contributed to the ski area being honored for their eco-responsible events.
Matt Robinson, Sun Valley Resort (ID)
As the manager of Konditorei restaurant at Sun Valley Resort, Matt has incorporated sustainability into every aspect of his operation, achieving both environmental and economic success. His vision has led to Konditorei being awarded a 3-Star Certification by the Green Restaurant Association -- the first in the ski industry. Matt also leads in community sustainability efforts as a member of the Idaho Conservation League’s Emerging Leaders for Idaho’s Environment, a volunteer at the Environmental Resource Center, and as an accredited member of the Green Restaurant Association. He incorporated locally-sourced food and energy-efficient appliances into the restaurant’s operation, and leads by example by hosting talks on how other members of the local business community can take steps toward sustainability success.
Julie Schultz, Deer Valley Resort (UT)
For years, Julie Schultz has been a champion for the environment at Deer Valley Resort, working tirelessly to make sustainability an integral part of the culture. She founded the sustainability department, and has led the ski area through waste reduction and renewable energy projects. Her waste reduction efforts have led to a 46 percent diversion rate, and her “hands on” approach has inspired others to take action in this area.
Thank you to all who applied! Stay tuned for information on how to apply in 2021.
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