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Environmental commitment

a culture of sustainability

Respect, serve and sustain our people and the environment. This is the first among Crystal Mountain’s core values. The two are inextricably connected; one’s prosperity dependent on the other. It is an idea that permeates every decision we make at the resort. As residents and business leaders of this beautiful region, we believe in taking the long term view by being mindful of balancing economic and ecological impact. This philosophy is reflected in developing a walkable village and investing in clean energy technology to reduce our carbon footprint and increase the resiliency of our mountain community.


The global scientific community has reached a consensus on the cause of climate change which is why we believe it is our responsibility to mitigate these challenges through action and advocacy.  Ultimately, it is the culmination of our collective efforts that will make the most profound impact. Crystal Mountain’s village has been built piece-by-piece over time and the same approach is applied to make meaningful strides toward a more sustainable future, such as:

  • Designing the resort as a pedestrian- and bike-friendly village, reducing use of carbon-emitting transportation
  • Being the first resort in Michigan to invest in wind energy credits, offsetting the carbon footprint of the Crystal Clipper high-speed quad chairlift to help supply the grid with more clean, renewable energy sources – reducing CO2 emissions by 174,000 pounds annually
  • Building the first LEED-certified (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) spa in the Midwest – one of only four in the nation in 2009 – that uses 28% less energy than a baseline structure
  • Becoming the first northern Michigan resort to provide complimentary electric vehicle charging stations, later adding a Chevy Volt as the resort’s primary security vehicle
  • Including a closed-loop, geo-thermal heating and cooling system as part of an $12 million expansion to the Inn at the Mountain (2018), reducing CO2 emissions by 150,000 pounds per year
  • Setting aside a 30-acre wooded preserve leased to Michigan Legacy Art Park for $1 per year
  • Utilizing LED lighting in accommodations and public spaces, including the resort’s 33,000 square-foot conference facility
  • Other thoughtful practices like in-room recycling, electric golf carts, re-fillable bath amenities, efficiency sensors for irrigation and snowmaking to name a few


Crystal Mountain is a Tesla Destination Partner with two Tesla High Power Wall Connectors and an additional three Level II chargers. Located in Lot F.


  • 2018 Climate Change Impact Award from SKI magazine and the National Ski Areas Association
  • 2015 Michigan Governor’s Energy Excellence Innovator of the Year Award
  • 2010 Detroit Free Press Green Leaders
  • 2007 White Pine Award from the Sierra Club

We are honored to have received recognition from our peers but more grateful for the opportunity it has provided us to learn and share best practices. The late George Petritz, among the founders of Buck Hills and former owner/president of Crystal Mountain, believed a person is known by the company they keep. We are privileged to work with organizations like Cherryland Electric Cooperative who provides the resort power, 56% of which comes from carbon-free sources. Crystal Mountain is also proud to be among Tesla’s Destination Driving Partners.

“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” - Vincent Van Gogh


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