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Squaw Valley aims to be the first ski resort powered by 100% renewable energy

Squaw Valley aims to be the first ski resort powered by 100% renewable energy
[Photo: courtesy of Alterra Mountain Company]

Lake Tahoe’s Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows has just set a new goal for itself, and it doesn’t involve snow, slaloms, or après-ski eating. The ski resort has teamed up with Liberty Utilities, the local electric service provider, to power the resort with 100% renewable energy by as early as December 2018.

Squaw Valley is the first ski resort to make a commitment of this size and on such a rapid timeline. To make it work, Squaw Valley and Liberty Utilities are teaming up with Tesla, which will manufacture the new energy storage system. The project will put the companies on the path to exceed the California state mandate of 50% renewable energy supply by 2030.

“Today’s announcement demonstrates that moving to all renewable energy in the present tense–not a generation from now–is not just possible, it’s entirely doable,” Andy Wirth, president and COO of Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, said in an email. “We have all got to generate the demand for renewable energy and support world-class and progressive companies like Liberty Utilities.”

Switching over to renewable energy will reduce the resort’s total annual carbon footprint from 13,078 metric tons to an estimated 6,682 metric tons–a 49% reduction. That’s equivalent to saving the emissions generated by 959 homes.

“We take accountability for our company’s contribution to CO2, hence our longstanding and unyielding internal focus on reducing our overall footprint,” said Wirth. “We’re glad to finally advance on this key, strategic level changeover to 100% renewable-sourced energy.”

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