Green Living In Sun Valley
The Wood River Valley--as some put it--may make heaven disappointing. Often described as one of the most beautiful places in the world, we are surrounded by the Sawtooth, Boulder and Pioneer mountain ranges. Our environment is also our livelihood, and as a community we intend to apply and educate strong ecological ethics to the stewardship of our natural resources.
As a community, we are home to several non profit initiatives, sustainable conferences and forums, geothermal projects, rides shares, and recycling programs. With ongoing classes and workshops at the Environmental Resource Center, the Sawtooth Botanical Garden, collaboration with Idaho's Bounty--recycling and energy efficiency are only just a small part of everyday life. Below you can find announcements for contests, schedules for the Mountain Rides (our free public transportation), the farmers' market, and more.
You can do your part while you visit.
Mountain Rides operates a free, year-round busing system with fixed route service in and around the cities of Sun Valley and Ketchum. The schedule changes according to the season with winter, spring, summer, and fall schedules. Mountain Rides also offers special A.D.A. services for handicapped riders. View the schedule & route map on the Mountain Rides website.
Mountain Rides also provides the Valley Commuter Bus for a fee that operates to and from the cities of Ketchum and Sun Valley to Hailey and Bellevue.
A paved bike path runs in and around the cities of Ketchum and Sun Valley, as well as the length of the Wood River Valley. Many use this path to bike to and from where they are going. View the map on the BCRD website and save some fuel.
Mountain Rides makes a difference in the quality of life in Blaine County by advocating for the availability and use of diverse transportation choices that reduce traffic congestion and air pollution, improve safety and health, conserve energy and resources, and improve people’s mobility. (208) 788-RIDE Programs include:
- Vanpool Services
- Rideshare & Carpooling - including an online ride match program
- Safe Routes to School
Recycling & Waste Removal
Blaine County recycles mixed paper, plastics 1-5, and aluminum/tin curbside. We have several drop off locations for glass and cardboard, and our main Recycle Center accepts items such as batteries, household hazerdous waste, and electronics. We also participate in Hilex Poly's plastic bag recycle program. They accept items such as plastic grocery bags, produce/newspaper bags, dry cleaner bags, cereal box liners, and plastic wrapping. Drop off locations for these items can be found at all Atkinsons Markets, the ERC, The Community School, LL Greens, Kings, and the Blaine County Annex building.
For complete list of drop off locations and acceptable items, visit www.5brecycles.org
Blaine County Recycling Center
At the Ohio Gulch Transfer Station
110 Ohio Gulch Road
Hailey, ID 83333
Hours of Operation: Mon—Sat, 8:00—5:00
Non Profit Organizations & Green Thinking Businesses
Environmental Resource Center
The ERC is dedicated to enhancing environmental and conservation awareness, enriching outdoor experiences, and promoting a more sustainable community for the current and future residents and guests of the Wood River Valley. Guiding its efforts, the ERC values community spirit, collaboration, volunteerism, leadership, stewardship, outreach, and objective integrity.
Circle of Environmental Excellence & Leadership
CEEL businesses contribute much to our society; providing jobs, products, services, and tax revenue. And, just like individuals, businesses create waste and other unwanted byproducts of their existence such as traffic congestion. In order to keep the Wood River Valley a safe, healthy, and livable community, we as businesses and individuals can make changes that will reduce negative impacts on our environment. The challenge businesses in particular face is making the necessary considerations for the good of the community while still contributing to the bottom line. It doesn't need to be an "either/or" situation.
In many cases, these needs are mutually beneficial. In order to aid businesses in doing their part and recognize those that are, the Environmental Resource Center offers the Circle of Environmental Excellence & Leadership (CEEL) program to certify businesses based on a credible, fair, and meaningful assessment of waste and trip reduction. CEEL participants have access to resources for preventing waste and pollution, conserving resources and reducing commute trips, including assessment tools, professional workshops, and networking sessions. In addition, they benefit from cost savings that inevitably comes from improved efficiency and higher employee satisfaction and productivity. Call the ERC to learn more about how the CEEL program can provide your business with public recognition for your efforts by helping encouraging residents and visitors to patronize your CEEL businesses.
The ERC works with Idaho GEMStars as businesses earn their CEEL certification.
In September of 1999, Governor Dirk Kempthorne introduced Idaho GEMStars, a statewide pollution prevention (P2) excellence and recognition program. This program provides pollution prevention education and public recognition to businesses, agricultural operations, governmental agencies, school districts, and others. P2 means reducing or eliminating pollution at the source so that it never enters the environment. This program's success relies heavily on the participation of entities that are concerned about Idaho's environment. For more information visit Idaho GEMStars.
The Sawtooth National Forest Avalanche Center
The Sawtooth National Forest Avalanche Center has offered daily avalanche advisories and educational programs since 1994. Prior to 1994, the Avalanche Center was not a dedicated program, but did offer avalanche education and general snow information. Thanks to the Friends of the Sawtooth NF Avalanche Center and increased funding from the Forest Service, the Avalanche Center is able to produce advisories and offer classes.
Operations begin in mid-November, based on snow accumulations. Daily advisories run through the season until late March or early April, when they phase into general information and weekend advisories through mid-April. Educational classes are offered throughout the winter season; check the education link on our home page or the www.avalanche.org education link for Idaho. Several local classes are offered in December and January. Instructors also travel to outlying communities and adjacent forests to offer expertise and quality educational programs for a variety of agencies and recreational groups.