Introducing The Mountaineers Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee

Last year we created a Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee. Meet the committee members, learn about what they're working on, and sign up for a free webinar on electric vehicles.
Nate Brown Nate Brown
Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee
March 22, 2020
Introducing The Mountaineers Carbon Footprint Reduction Committee

Conservation has been an important part of The Mountaineers since its beginning. From advocating for the creation of national parks and Wilderness areas, to protecting current threats to our public lands and teaching Leave No Trace principles, The Mountaineers has ignited its members to stand up for our wild place. Today, much of the good work from the past is in jeopardy due to what is arguably the greatest threat to our natural world as we know it: climate change. 

But how best to address something as big as climate change? How does an organization focused on outdoor recreation fit in to this work? When the newest strategic plan, Vision 2022, was completed in 2018, The Mountaineers chose to continue the tradition of conservation by thoughtfully focusing on the reduction of the organization’s carbon footprint. 

To help accomplish this effort, The Mountaineers formed a committee of members with a diverse set of skills and perspectives. The committee was established in March 2019, and is comprised of:

  • Nate Brown (Seattle Branch, Volunteer)
  • James Burke (Tacoma Branch, Tacoma Program Center Committee)
  • Mark Kroese (Seattle Branch, Board of Directors)
  • Geoff Lawrence (Tacoma Branch, Tacoma Program Center Committee)
  • Erika Lundahl (Mountaineers Books Staff, Conservation Impact Manager)
  • Charlie Michel (Tacoma Branch, Sea Kayaking Committee Chair Person and Tacoma Program Center Committee )
  • Gilonne d’Origny (Seattle Branch, Advisory Council)
  • Amanda Virbitsky (Mountaineers Staff, Volunteer Support & Permitting Coordinator)
  • Tom Vogl (Mountaineers, CEO)

After getting to know one another, the committee members set out to learn how and where we currently emit carbon, research possible ways to reduce that footprint, and prioritize potential projects to reduce our collective carbon footprint. Additionally, we have looked at ways The Mountaineers can leverage education – a core value of our organization – to create an even greater impact among our membership.

In the coming months, you hear about our work in a series of blog posts. We’ve been hard at work for the past year, working to increase the electrical efficiencies of our buildings, and we’re excited to share how that’s already helped reduce our carbon footprint. You will also hear about what Mountaineers Books has done to lower its carbon footprint, and how the books we publish shed light on climate change, particularly via the Braided River imprint. We will discuss how food sourcing plays a role in carbon emissions, and you will hear about possible ways we are considering to mitigate carbon emitted by our transportation. All of these updates are coming soon, plus ideas for how you can contribute to this effort on a personal and organizational level.

We are excited to be doing our part to address the current climate crisis, and in doing so, helping future generations enjoy the lands and waters we love. 

Webinar: Reduce Your Carbon Footprint AND save Time & Money - Electric Vehicles

One of our committee members, Charlie Michel, will be leading a webinar about electric vehicles. We hope you can join us May 4.

Learn More & Sign up

If you're interested in learning more about electric vehicles in the meantime, check out our piece "Footprints: Hiking vs. Carbon" from Mountaineer magazine about electric vehicle use and how it has fit into the life of a family dedicated to getting outdoors. 

photo by Tim Nair.


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