Company Announces Identification of 5 Percent Reduction in Total Energy Consumption for Fiscal Year ending July 31, 2009
BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Aug. 18, 2008 – Vail Resorts (NYSE: MTN), the premier mountain resort operator and a leader in luxury destination-based travel at iconic locations, was honored today by Condé Nast Traveler as a leader in social responsibility in the travel industry as a winner of the magazine’s 2008 World Savers Awards in the category of environmental protection.
As one of only six global travel companies hand-picked from 142 applicants by an elite and prestigious judging panel for Condé Nast Traveler’s environmental leadership awards, Vail Resorts was recognized for its commitment to renewable energy, its aggressive and innovative "energy layoff" conservation program and its successful forest conservation partnership with the National Forest Foundation, a nonprofit associated with the U.S. Forest Service.
"The Condé Nast Traveler World Savers Awards recognize companies that are stepping up to the challenge of improving our world," said Condé Nast Traveler Editor-in-Chief Klara Glowczewska. "This year’s finalists are setting standards in social responsibility in ways that we hope will become models for the entire travel industry."
"At Vail Resorts, our product is the great outdoors and as such, we have a special obligation to protect the environment in which we live and work," said Rob Katz, chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. "We are truly honored to be recognized as one of the leaders in sustainability in our industry by one of the icons in the publishing industry - Condé Nast Traveler. But, we’re not resting on these laurels. We are continuously looking for ways to further improve the already exceptional experience we provide our guests and to do so in a responsible and sustainable way."
In August of 2006, Vail Resorts committed to offset 100 percent of its electricity usage with renewable energy credits that support the development of wind farms across the country. At the time, Vail Resorts had made the second largest corporate commitment to this renewable energy program in the United States. That commitment continues to this day with Vail Resorts offsetting electricity for its five ski resorts, lodging properties including eight RockResort hotels and spas and nearly 2,000 additional hotel and condominiums, the Grand Teton Lodge Company, more than 145 retail and rental operations and its office locations.
Vail Resorts also forged a partnership with the National Forest Foundation, a nonprofit partner of the U.S. Forest Service, to create one of the largest donation-based forest conservation programs of its kind, that has raised almost $1 million to date, allowing numerous miles of trails to be built and maintained, wildlife habitat to be protected and also for the improvement of the overall health of forests.
In the Fall of 2007, Vail Resorts launched an energy conservation program that was then expanded in the Spring of 2008 with the announcement of a companywide "energy layoff" with the goal to reduce the Company’s energy consumption by 10 percent over two years.
Today, Vail Resorts announced that it has identified initiatives across the Company that would result in a 5 percent reduction in its energy consumption for its fiscal year ending July 31, 2009 (over the prior fiscal year). New "energy layoff" measures that will be implemented this ski season include:
Companywide implementation of a program started at Beaver Creek called IdleWise that limits idling time on all company vehicles to five minutes or less;
Expansion of the employee carpool incentive program;
Upgrades and enhancements to snowmaking systems: from energy-efficient pumps to purchasing new, higher-tech snow guns that save energy and water;
Right-sizing vehicle power and optimizing vehicle routes to minimize fuel consumption on all tasks;
Installation of motion sensors and programmable thermostats;
Mandatory adherence to Energy Star criteria for all capital projects;
Infra-red photo audits of the energy efficiency for Company facilities and buildings to reduce leaks and use less energy to heat buildings; and
Numerous other initiatives.
"Today, reducing energy consumption should be one of the highest priorities for any U.S. company. With both the high price of oil and natural gas, as well the imperative to protect our natural environment, nothing can be more critical. I am incredibly proud of everyone at Vail Resorts for their ingenuity and dedication. While some folks may know the right thing to do, our folks went out and did it. What I am very impressed by is that our Company will accomplish these reductions and lessen our consumption of a valuable worldwide commodity, while at the same time we will be taking the experience we provide our guests up to a whole new level this year," said Katz.
For more information about Vail Resorts’ "energy layoff" program or its other sustainable programs, visit www.vailresorts.com .
About Vail Resorts
Vail Resorts, Inc. is the leading mountain resort operator in the United States. The Company's subsidiaries operate the mountain resort properties at the Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone mountain resorts in Colorado, the Heavenly Ski Resort in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada and the Grand Teton Lodge Company in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The Company's subsidiary, RockResorts, a luxury resort hotel company, manages casually elegant properties across the United States and the Caribbean. Vail Resorts Development Company is the real estate planning, development and construction subsidiary of Vail Resorts, Inc. Vail Resorts is a publicly held company traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: MTN). The Vail Resorts company website is www.vailresorts.com and consumer website is www.snow.com.