Sustainability Tip: Make 2023 a positive year for our earth |

Sustainability Tip: Make 2023 a positive year for our earth

Elizabeth Baer
Sustainability Tip
The Walking Mountains sustainability team at a recent Actively Green event.
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As we welcome 2023, many of us are making resolutions for self-improvement and growth, and a few may have already been abandoned, but it is not too late to consider making some climate action resolutions to improve both your life and the planet. If we all focus on simple lifestyle changes and action items, we can make 2023 a positive year for our earth, ourselves and our community. Here are some of those resolutions our sustainability team is making this year, and we hope they inspire some of your own.

Biking or walking to work is a great way to combine your fitness goals and climate action. Transportation has the highest proportion of emissions in Eagle County, but we can work together to change that through behavior change. “I’m going to bike to work when it warms up,” said Amelia Kovacs, sustainability coordinator at Walking Mountains.

Focusing on sustainably sourced meats, dairy and produce from local sources can diversify your diet and help the environment. Buying produce that is in season so that it does not have to be shipped as far when possible significantly decreases carbon emissions. This may be difficult in the winter and no one can be perfect, but making an effort to frequent farmers’ markets come summer makes shopping fun and sustainable. “I would like to be more aware of the impact of my diet and try to buy more local foods,” said Elizabeth Baer, sustainability fellow at Walking Mountains.

As mentioned above, transportation is incredibly important to reducing your climate impact. However, if human-powered options such as biking and walking are not the only ways to reduce your emissions. Taking public transportation is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. You can also consider purchasing an electric vehicle as your next car. Buying an electric vehicle may be more affordable than you realize as it reduces your costs from gas and there are many rebates available. “I would like to commute to work via electric, shared, or human-powered transportation twice per week,” said Gina McCrackin, climate action collaborative manager at Walking Mountains.

We are lucky in Eagle County to have many amazing organizations that are doing great work and need volunteers such as the Watershed Council and Vail Valley Mountain Trails Alliance. Walking Mountains also has many volunteer opportunities including helping with Zero-Waste Events. Those interested in volunteering should contact

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Diverting waste from the landfill helps to keep resources in circulation. Composting in particular reduces emissions that result from improper decomposition of organic materials. Residential composting is available throughout the county through drop sites and variously priced programs through Vail Honeywagon. “I already recycle but this year I plan to start composting at my apartment, to reduce my waste even more,” said Will Barror, climate action collaborative associate at Walking Mountains.

Water is a precious and limited resource, made even more scarce due to climate change. We need to reduce our water consumption to protect our communities and natural resources. Reducing water consumption through shortened showers, decreased landscaping usage, and encouraging water-wise policy are all great strategies to protect our water resources. “To reduce my water usage, I am going to take shorter showers,” said Rikki Borkowski, sustainability coordinator at Walking Mountains.

These examples are just a starting point! We can all make a difference this year if we work together.

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