Sustainable Crested Butte

Bear on bicycle from SCB logo

Our Mission

We are Sustainable Crested Butte, Inc.

We are building a waste-free future in the Gunnison Valley.

Please join us in our work to safeguard a beautiful future for our beloved Gunnison Valley and our planet as a whole.

“Sustainable CB is an organization that has become integral to the Crested Butte community as a leader in education, advocacy, and resources for renewable practices and sustainability. Sustainable CB has engaged our school community as well by providing internships and opportunities for student involvement in decision making and leadership development. It has been a pleasure to witness the positive impact this organization has had on our small town.”

Betsy Kolodziej, Crested Butte Community School AP Biology Teacher

Our Story

Our story started with the belief that an individual, no matter their age, wealth, or power, could make a difference. Founded by a high school student named Benjamin Swift in 2015 to advocate for a plastic bag ban, we have since then grown to be a leader in promoting sustainable living throughout the Gunnison Valley.

Our organization’s humble beginnings and rapid growth since then are a true testament to the power of hope and a commitment to making small and big choices every single day to help save our planet.

Learn more about how we got started and where we are going next.

Waste-Free Events

Full Waste-Free Events place setting including wine glass, champagne flute, cup, and mug

The Crested Butte Climate Action Plan anticipates that if we do nothing to reduce our waste in this community, greenhouse gas emissions from our landfill will grow 19% between 2017 and 2030, the second biggest growth of the five key sectors outlined in the plan. In a community that thrives on the vibrancy of our special events, especially in the summertime, reducing the waste produced by those events is key to keeping our emissions in check.

In the first 4 years of offering our Waste-Free Events program, our event partners diverted over 70,000 single-use waste items from the local landfill. While this program started to provide affordable reusable materials as an alternative to disposable items at events, we are expanding to offer assistance for planning zero-waste events in the Gunnison Valley.

Plan your next zero-waste event today.

Be the Change

We believe strongly in the power of grassroots efforts to fight climate change; small efforts every day can help save our planet. But it’s hard to know where to start as an individual. The list of questions we find ourselves wondering about goes on and on:

  • Should you be buying an electric car and installing solar panels on your home?
  • What are you allowed to recycle in Mt. Crested Butte?
  • Should you be doing something different with your yard waste?
  • What’s the best way to reduce household water use?

We are always learning ourselves, but we’ve also put together some resources that may help you answer these common questions. Head on over to our “Be the Change” section of our site to figure out how you can live a more sustainable life!


Our organization is small and grassroots. We are currently 100% volunteer-led. That means we have remarkably low overhead and the majority of your dollars will go directly to supporting our programming efforts. We invite you to take a look at the Projects page on our site to see what your donation will support.