Vail to be honored as a Top 100 Sustainable Destination by international group

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VAIL — An international organization is recognizing the town of Vail’s sustainability efforts.

Following an application and in-person audit, the town of Vail will be named among the Top 100 Sustainable Destinations by the Global Sustainable Tourism Council and the Green Destinations organizations. Vail will be among those honored at an annual sustainability event in Portugal at the end of this month.

The town will spend roughly $6,000 to send Kristen Bertuglia, the town’s environmental sustainability manager, and Vail Town Council member Kim Langmaid to the event. Langmaid is also the founder and current vice president of Walking Mountains Science Center.

As part of the application and in-person audit, Vail Village and the surrounding areas were assessed with criteria including wildlife protection, transportation and infrastructure, water quality, waste reduction and greenhouse gas emissions and more. The audit was conducted by Magdalena Muir, of Green Destinations.

The weeklong audit of Vail included visits to attractions such as the Betty Ford Alpine Gardens, Walking Mountains Science Center and White River National Forest.

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Vail’s efforts to earn the sustainable destination designation started in earnest with the local Actively Green program in the months leading up to the 2015 FIS World Alpine Ski Championships. A 2015 ban on plastic bags from grocery stores, a town-wide recycling program and other initiatives are among the other efforts the town has launched in the past few years.

Vail Daily Business Editor Scott Miller can be reached at 970-748-2930, or @scottnmiller.

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