First, we want to thank all of the members of our wonderful business community here in the Gunnison Valley. By running a business here, you contribute to community vibrancy in many ways. Your business is part of the fabric of our community and we want to support you in making your operations more sustainable in a cost-effective way wherever possible.
This is a relatively new initiative for us and one that came about as a result of the Crested Butte Climate Action Plan. Buildings and the energy they require are one of the biggest sources of greenhouse gas emissions in the Town of Crested Butte. If you own your building, you can help us in achieving the ambitious goals laid out in the Climate Action Plan. We’d love to have you on board!
One thing to keep in mind is that several of these options do require an upfront investment. In some cases, grants and low-cost financing are available to support your efforts to make your business more sustainable. In many cases, your upfront investment will end up paying dividends in the long-term because it will reduce the cost of the energy you need for your business.
“At Montanya Distillers and Zoetica, we have collaborated with Sustainable CB on many occasions for events and as co-proponents of waste reduction and low waste living in Crested Butte. We are so grateful to have a partner like this, who shares our ideology about how easy and important it is to provide structures that eliminate single use plastic and trash from our community.”Karen Hoskin, Founder, Montanya Rum Distillers and Zoetica
Colorado offers a lot of great incentives and programs to promote energy efficiency and sustainability. While a lot of those programs are for residential properties, some are also available for businesses.
Gunnison County Electric Association has traditionally offered Energy Evaluations to help people reduce the energy use of their homes and businesses. In-person evaluations are currently on hold due to COVID-19, but you can contact their energy use advisor via phone for energy saving recommendations. Find out more.
Other ideas for energy savings can be found on our Crested Butte Climate Action Plan page.
In addition to reducing energy use, you may also have opportunities to choose the source of the energy you purchase for your business. GCEA offers both Community Solar Gardens and a Green Power Program. In addition, they are working on installing a hydro-generation project at the Taylor Dam. If you are passionate about sustainability, we encourage you to explore the various renewable options available from GCEA. It will take a true community effort to bring all of these options online. If you are interested, you could help lead the way and set the standard in the Gunnison Valley.
Waste Reduction and Recycling
We are excited to offer several programs that help businesses with reducing single-use waste and some opportunities to recycle some hard-to-recycle materials. If you own a retail location and are interested in having our Boomerang Bags available for your customers, learn more about that program here.
We have a big goal of some day having a Center for Hard to Recycle Materials here in the Gunnison Valley. As a bridge to achieving that goal, we have set up a program we call the Recycle Train which allows us to pool materials and then deliver them to the Eco-Cycle CHaRM Facility in Boulder. If you’re interested in joining the Recycle Train on behalf of your business, learn more about that program. If you take frequent trips to the front range and would be willing to deliver materials for us, let us know!
If you host events, or attend them as a vendor, and would like to reduce your environmental impact, be sure to check out our Waste-Free Events program. In addition to offering reusable dinnerware, glasses, and cutlery, we also created a Waste-Free Events Toolkit. If you need even more information, we can introduce you to one of our Waste-Free Events Consultants. For a small fee, they can guide you through the details of hosting Waste-Free Events from start to finish.
How Else Can We Help?
We are here to support you and your business as you work to become more sustainable and energy-efficient. If you have questions about any particular areas, let us know. We are a small team, but as we make long-term plans, we want to make sure we’re listening to all of our stakeholders and delivering on needed projects and support to help our businesses be successful in reaching their sustainability goals.
We are here to empower you to be the change.