Mt. Hood Meadows Silver Eagle News

For immediate release

Contact: Dave Riley, 503-337-2222 ext. 259
Stu Watson 541-386-8860


MT. HOOD, Ore. (May 18, 2004) —Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort has won a prestigious Silver Eagle award for its environmental education program, and was also a finalist for two additional Eagle awards, including the Golden Eagle Overall Environmental Excellence award, at the National Ski Areas Association annual convention in Savannah, Georgia, earlier this week. The awards are conferred by Mountain Sports Media, publishers of SKI and SKIING magazines.

As a finalist in three categories, Meadows led the nation, said Dave Riley, Meadows vice president and general manager.

“Only ski resorts that are actively pursuing environmental goals even apply to this program. It is deeply satisfying to us to be part of an elite group of 32 ski areas that understand what we all know at Meadows: the mountain and its health are critical to our future, and to our guests’ enjoyment of the skiing and snowboarding recreation we provide.”

Riley said the seven Silver Eagle awards, and the overall Golden Eagle award are the highest environmental awards conferred in the ski industry. A panel of environmental and industry experts judge the entries.

Meadows adopted a sustainable management plan 18 months ago, and has set environmental goals across all areas of the company’s operation. The company received the Silver Eagle award for environmental education based on its efforts to educate and foster more sustainable behavior among employees, resort guests and the broader community in which it does business.

Working first with employees, Meadows trains managers and orients new employees in sustainability objectives each fall. This is reinforced with brief factual or motivational “sustainability tips” shared during the Daily Briefing. Instructions for employees on how to engage an aggressive recycling effort are printed in English and Spanish, and distributed to all employees.

To inform guests about the resort’s support for renewable energy, Meadows created a quarterly newsletter, installed posters around its lodges, sponsored annual on-site public tours of the ski area, and hosted a series of public meetings to review development planning. In addition, Meadows created the Mini-Green Tag program with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, offering guests the opportunity to support renewable energy through donations online or at resort ticket windows. Posters at ticket windows and material in the resort’s online Green Room explain that support of renewable energy is a means for skiers to offset the global warming impacts of driving their cars to the mountain

Combined efforts by the resort and its guests to support renewable power prevented production of 744 tons of carbon dioxide during 2003-04 ski season.

Meadows is also expanding awareness of sustainability principles through its support of local food producers. It hosted a Food Fair in the fall of 2003, with the objective of educating large buyers and distributors about the wide number of small producers and processors with quality products of potential interest to consumers. More than 100 buyers and sellers attended the fair.

In addition to those efforts, Meadows has sponsored an informational fair on Sustainable Slopes Outreach Day in February 2003 and this year, at which guests could learn more about the efforts of several groups to promoted alternative transportation, clean water and renewable energy.

The National Ski Areas Association represents 326 alpine resort members nationwide.