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Mount Hood Meadows is doing its part to Keep Winter Cool. In partnership with Portland General Electric and the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort is purchasing enough clean, renewable wind energy to run a major chairlift at Meadows and the only chairlift at Cooper Spur Mountain Resort. By purchasing 334 of PGE’s Clean Wind Green Tags supplied by the BEF, Meadows is supporting the generation of 334,000 kilowatt-hours of wind energy. That’s enough green power to run its Shooting Star Express chairlift this season. Green Tags, also known as renewable energy certificates, represent the environmental benefit of renewable power facilities such as wind farms, photovoltaic solar arrays and geothermal generating stations. Each tag purchased by Meadows supports generation of 1,000 kilowatt-hours of green wind power, and represents prevention of 1,400 pounds of carbon dioxide. Mount Hood Meadows’ purchase equals 6.7% of the company’s average annual power consumption, and will prevent production of 234 tons of carbon dioxide, the major global warming pollutant. A separate Green Tag purchase will support 33,000 kilowatt-hours of green power, enough to power the Homestead lift at Cooper Spur. That purchase will prevent about 23 tons of carbon dioxide from conventional power generation. Combined with benefits of other programs already in place, the resort this year has prevented production of 580 tons of carbon dioxide.
Visitors to Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort on Sustainable Slopes Day (Saturday, Feb. 21) will ski clean and green thanks to a contribution of renewable power from Green Mountain Energy and Portland General Electric. In addition to helping Keep Winter Cool with renewable power, visitors to Meadows on Feb. 21 can learn from several groups and companies working to develop renewable power and build environmental awareness. The information fair runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Groups taking part in the information fair in the resort’s south lodge include Green Mountain Energy / PGE, Bonneville Environmental Foundation, 3 Phases Energy Services/Pacific Power, CarpoolMatchNW.org, and the Portland Snowrider Project of the Surfrider Foundation.
In recognition of Sustainable Slopes Day at Meadows, PGE and its renewable energy partner Green Mountain Energy will buy enough renewable power (25,188 kilowatt hours) to equal the average daily power use for the entire resort in February 2003. Since the first Keep Winter Cool Day in 2003, Meadows and its customers have supported enough renewable energy to prevent production of more than 676 tons of carbon dioxide, a major global warming pollutant. Working with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, Meadows at the first Sustainable Slopes Day introduced its guest to the mini-Green Tag. It gives skiers a means to offset the greenhouse gases from their car travel to the mountain. Sold for $2 at ticket windows, the mini-Green Tag has become an immensely popular way for skiers to Keep Winter Cool.
Funds support development of renewable energy resources. Through Feb. 3, skiers had purchased enough Green Tags to prevent production of 253 tons of carbon dioxide, a major global warming pollutant. Representatives from Meadows and various groups will be available all day Feb. 21 to meet with skiers in the central hallway of the south lodge, outside the concierge desk and rental shop.
Green Mountain Energy and 3 Phases Energy provide renewable power to customers of, respectively, Portland General Electric and Pacific Power. Representatives of each will explain how people can convert to renewable power at home, and get a voucher worth $20 off their next lift ticket purchase at Meadows.
CarpoolMatchNW.org officials will talk about the online tool to find and connect with other skiers interested in carpooling, to have fun, make new friends and reduce greenhouse gasses from car traffic. Meadows and CarpoolMatchNW.org began sharing online visitors in mid-January. Since then, use of the carpooling utility has more than doubled.
The Portland Snowrider Project of the Surfrider Foundation will talk about efforts to link concerns about winter snowfall and ocean health, issues of interest not only to surfers but also to their kindred winter spirits, the growing population of snow boarders.
The Celilo Group of Portland publishes the Sustainable Industries Journal and other products designed to build awareness of and support for businesses with a sustainable orientation. Representatives will be on hand to share information.
As part of its corporate sustainability initiative, Meadows has taken a lead role in ski industry efforts to counter global warming. Meadows joined 39 other ski areas from around the nation this fall to support S. 139, also known as the McCain-Lieberman Climate Stewardship Act. The bill, which was just 7 votes shy of passage in the Senate, would limit U.S. greenhouse gas production by 2010 to levels produced in 2000.As a member of the Oregon Natural Step Network, Mt. Hood Meadows encourages other individuals and businesses to take charge of their own impacts on atmospheric warming. Mt. Hood Meadows is meeting the Northwest Clean Energy Challenge, purchasing standards set by the environmental community for what constitutes a significant green power purchase. For more information on the Northwest Clean Energy Challenge and a list of other participating businesses, see the Renewable Northwest Project website (www.RNP.org/).