By Salt Lake Chamber | Posted – April 25, 2024 at 8:00 a.m.

This story is sponsored by Salt Lake Chamber.

Utah’s business landscape is undergoing a shift to sustainability as companies across the state are stepping up their efforts to embrace eco-friendly practices. These sustainable practices don’t just serve the environment — they benefit and contribute to a company’s long-term success as well. A Forbes article written by Blake Morgan notes that customers are increasingly interested in earth-friendly companies.

“Making sustainability an essential aspect of your customer experience is critical for helping the environment and growing your brand,” Morgan writes.

If you’re wondering what this could look like in your business, here are some ideas from Utah companies that are leading the charge toward a more sustainable future.

Brighton Ski Resort

Brighton Ski Resort is taking proactive steps to combat food waste through a Food Waste Diversion Pilot program. This initiative targets food waste generated in resort kitchens, including leftovers and scraps, which are then sent to Wasatch Resource Recovery for conversion into usable methane gas.

By diverting food waste from landfills, Brighton not only reduces greenhouse gas emissions but also minimizes the resort’s overall garbage production, lessening the burden on trash haulers. This sustainable practice aligns with Brighton’s goal to achieve Net Zero status for greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.

Gardner Group

Gardner, a commercial real estate developer, recently spearheaded a groundbreaking sustainability initiative with the Baltic Pointe project, Utah’s first large-scale mass timber building. Mass timber comes from tightly layered soft lumber and is a sustainable alternative to carbon-intensive materials like steel and concrete.

The project received support from the U.S. Forest Service, highlighting the environmental benefits and reduced carbon footprint compared to traditional construction. Mass timber’s efficiency, safety and aesthetic appeal contribute to its growing adoption in commercial projects. The hope is that this will set a precedent for future sustainable construction in the Mountain West region.

Brigham Young University

BYU’s Sustainability Office is leading the charge in sparking eco-consciousness on campus and beyond. With Green Week as its flagship event, students dive into service projects, discussions and film screenings that focus on eco-friendly efforts. Last year, they even launched a Provo chapter of Grow the Flow to boost Great Salt Lake water levels.

From conserving water to supporting local businesses, students are stepping up to make a difference. BYU encourages students to join such groups, reduce water consumption, recycle, shop locally and stay informed about environmental issues.

Lux Catering & Events

LUX Catering & Events demonstrates a robust commitment to environmental sustainability through its recycling program, which diverts nearly 90% of waste from landfills into various recycling streams. The program efficiently recycles more than 250 pounds of food waste daily, amounting to 60 tons yearly. This gets repurposed into fertilizers for city parks and local farms via a partnership with Momentum Recycling.

LUX actively engages in initiatives such as supporting the Waste to Energy Recycling Facility, converting previously non-recyclable items into energy. They even recycle all the plastic gloves they use. LUX is also in the process of building a new state-of-the-art facility, which will meet all Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) standards for energy efficiency.

rPlus Energies

rPlus Energies is an eco-friendly company specializing in large-scale renewable energy generation and storage projects in the United States. Their diversified portfolio includes solar, wind, battery and pumped storage hydropower facilities.

Their recent partnership with Sandbrook Capital, involving a significant investment of up to $460 million, highlights their commitment to accelerating the decarbonization of the U.S. grid. Their development of more than 630 megawatts of solar and wind projects also showcases their dedication to sustainable energy solutions and environmental stewardship in the energy sector.

Swire Coca-Cola

Swire Coca-Cola’s sustainability plan emphasizes sustainable development across planet, product and people. Collaborating for water replenishment, they aim for 100% renewable energy by 2026 and significant carbon emission cuts by 2030.

Aligned with Coca-Cola’s waste reduction vision, they use more eco-friendly packaging to make the world greener and encourage eco-friendly actions in their work.

fulFILLed Lifestyle Co.

fulFILLed Lifestyle Co., a no-plastic company/refillery, embodies a philosophy of sustainable living and conscious business practices. Their mission is to help individuals develop a mindset of sustainability and lead sustainable and fulfilling lives by offering eco-friendly products and refilling services.

fulFILLed also recently launched their Business reFILL Program in Salt Lake, Summit, and Wasatch counties. This innovative pilot program is designed to help local businesses reduce waste, save money and adopt sustainable practices.

Utah PaperBox

Utah PaperBox stands out as a model of sustainability within its industry, emphasizing sustainability as one of its six core values. Their headquarters is LEED Gold Certified, a designation awarded to buildings that go above and beyond to ensure it is constructed and operated to the highest level of sustainability.

That means solar panels outfit the roof, skylights replace the need for over 50 electric light features and special press cooling units save enough energy to power 70 homes.

Utah PaperBox also prioritizes responsible sourcing, utilizing FSC and SFI certified paper to avoid contributing to deforestation. Their dedication extends to promoting clean air through President Steve Keyser’s involvement with Leaders for Clean Air and providing electric vehicle charging stations powered by their solar system.

Utah Clean Energy

Utah Clean Energy champions the clean energy shift with expertise and vision, aiming for thriving communities sustained by clean energy. Their mission focuses on creating a future where communities thrive with clean energy solutions, guided by core values such as collaboration, impactful work and environmental stewardship.

Most recently, the company partnered with Merge Electric Fleet Solutions and is currently offering a free Fleet Electrification Analysis for medium- and heavy-duty vehicle fleets.

This service uses telematics data to figure out if electric cars could work, how much money they could save, how much pollution they could cut, and what charging stations are needed. Fleet electrification brings cost savings, incentives, advanced technology and environmental benefits — and it also aligns with market growth.

Responsible resource management is ingrained in the Salt Lake Chamber’s vision for a vibrant and resilient Utah. When our business community recognizes the critical importance of balancing economic development with environmental stewardship, we play a part in preserving Utah’s natural beauty for future generations. Learn more about our energy and environment policy priorities here.

Connect with one of our experts to discuss how your building can help achieve your company’s ESG milestones.