How green is your favorite ski resort?

Results of the annual Ski Area Environmental Scorecard show that 12 of the 19 resorts evaluated in the Northern Nevada/California region improved their scores over last year. Across the West, the report says, resorts are undertaking energy retrofits, using new efficient snowmaking equipment, increasing their use of biofuel, and purchasing energy from renewable resources. However, expansion and real estate development continue to threaten mountain environments. Ryan Demmy Bidwell, executive director of Colorado Wild, said, “Relatively speaking, resorts like Breckenridge and Kirkwood that continue to expand and develop can’t compensate for bad land use practices by simply replacing light bulbs. Energy is an important component of improving performance, but it isn’t the only factor conscientious skiers and riders should be concerned with.”

At the top of the list for this region was Squaw Valley, with a score of 78.3 percent and a grade of “A.” Other “A” resorts in the region, with highest scores listed first, include: Alpine Meadows, Homewood Mountain Resort, and Boreal Mountain. Earning a “B” were Sierra at Tahoe, Mountain High, Mammoth Mountain, Sugar Bowl, Mount Rose-Ski Tahoe, Mount Shasta, Kirkwood Mountain Resort and Bear Mountain Resort. “C” grades: Snow Summit, Sierra Summit, Snow Valley Dodge Ridge, Bear Valley Mountain Resort and Heavenly. Northstar-at-Tahoe was the only area resort to earn a “D.”

Ranking dead last in the list of 83 resorts analyzed was Copper Mountain Ski Resort in Colorado. To view the full report, with details on their environmental management practices, visit www.skiareacitizens.com.