Breck and the Three R’s of Sustainability

Trash cans

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. This is a common refrain when thinking about our environmental actions, and Breckenridge Ski Resort has embraced the 3 R’s all across the mountain.

Epic PromiseYou might be a regular recycler in your home, but do you think about recycling when you’re on vacation? Here at Breck, recycling is an important part of our Epic Promise program. There are recycling bins at each of the ski area’s restaurants, so skiers and riders can properly dispose of their recyclable materials, even while on the mountain. In fact, the resort itself recycles over 350 tons of material each year!

The Breck Food & Beverage and Grounds Maintenance teams partner to "do good" by recycling and sorting waste on the mountain.
The Breck Food & Beverage and Grounds Maintenance teams partner to “do good” by recycling and sorting waste on the mountain.

But waste reduction at Breck goes far beyond items like beverage bottles. Resort officials also make every effort to reuse everything they can. For example, all the scrap metal from resort projects is melted down so it can be repurposed. Not only that, but woodchips from trail maintenance projects are either used for habitat restoration or sent to a biomass plant where they are burned to create energy. Last season, 54 percent of the trash generated by Breckenridge Ski Resort facilities and projects was diverted by either recycling or repurposing. That means that the resort kept over half of this waste from ending up in the Summit County landfill – that’s a pretty epic accomplishment!

Breck also shares this environmental commitment with the community. Just before opening day each year, the resort sponsors an event called “Wake up Breck.” Anyone in town can head to one of our local coffee shops for a free cup of coffee and a free reusable coffee mug. And by using these coffee mugs, we reduce the amount of waste generated by paper to-go cups.

Why are the 3 R’s so important? It’s simple; by reducing, reusing, and recycling materials, we eliminate the need to extract more raw materials to produce these same items, and we save a lot of energy in the process. Think about this: Recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees and enough energy to power the average American home for six months. In a year, the average American uses about 680 tons of paper. How much of that are you recycling?

Want to do your part to reduce, reuse, and recycle? Check out this guide from the US Environmental Protection Agency. What can you do to help keep Breck a beautiful place? Do your part to recycle while you’re visiting! Whether you’re in town or on the slopes, please make sure you put your recyclables in the correct bins. Check to see if recycling is available where you’re staying, and if not, make use of our free recycling center located near the 7-11. You can also buy a reusable Breckenridge bag and take it with you when you go shopping.  And don’t forget to keep reducing, reusing, and recycling once you go home – it’s easy, and it makes a difference!

– Jess Hoover

    Leave a Reply