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Stefanie Michaels

Stefanie Michaels

Posted: September 11, 2008 07:35 PM

Switzerland- voted #1 Green Country in the World

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Hello fellow "Greenies"- I'm Stefanie Michaels. I am also known as Adventure Girl from Adventure Girl.com. I am excited to be a part of Huffington Post's Green Awareness, and thankful to them for bringing me on board to blog-green for all of you readers. As often as possible, I'll be blogging about environmentally aware green locales, travel destinations and products that I feel are taking the best steps to move forward into a better future for us and our planet. I hope you enjoy my blog, and please feel free to connect with me to share concerns, accolades or anything else on your "greenie" mind!

First Stop! Switzerland.

I wasn't sure if you all knew this- but Switzerland has been awarded first place by Yale and Columbia's Environmental Performance Index for 2008. (Niger is straight last at 149th!) Environmental protection for the Swiss has been tradition, dating as far back as 1914, when the nation created the oldest national Alpine park- the first in the Alps and in Central Europe. Today, there is hefty legislation to create another twenty parks through out Switzerland.

Swiss Companies are bringing on celebrity endorsers, such as George Clooney, who recently signed onto the board of a Swiss energy company seeking new eco-developments in the clean production of hydrogen, solar energy and fuel cells, to show the world they are serious about being green and utilizing star power to do so!

Whole towns are now walking towns- no gas vehicles are allowed, hotels are using nearby lakes to heat and cool their guests, organic agriculture is common place, and recycling, reuse, and composting is their mantra.

So, in my world of travel and adventure- I hear this and think about the importance of rewarding and celebrating not only companies, but also whole countries who partake in this kind of ultra-consciousness for our planet. Not only are they a symbol of what can be achieved globally, but they also raise the bar and set the standard for the rest of us to follow.

When thinking about that next holiday you might be planning- think Switzerland- and with ski season coming up- how about St. Moritz! It's all glitz...and GREEN!

Here are a couple suggestions as to where to "accommodate".

The Hotel Europa in St. Moritz is making a contribution towards combating climate warming: Guests who arrive in a hybrid car receive a 20% discount on overnight accommodation. Of course, guests arriving by train get the same benefit.

For more information on Hotel Europa: www.hotel-europa.ch

The Badrutt's Palace Hotel knows how to keep things green in the Swiss Alps. The legendary and luxurious Leading Hotel of the World in St. Moritz, is currently reducing its carbon dioxide emissions by 1,000 tons per year thanks to a pioneering heat pump system installed in December 2006. That's a reduction of 80% annually over the hotel's previous heating system, as well as substantial contribution to the village's much-needed "Clean Energy Project," which is improving air quality throughout the Engadine Valley.

The new ecologically sensitive heat pump is a cooperative effort between Badrutt's Palace Hotel and Zurich's "EWZ" power station, which not only designed and financed the energy supply solution, but also operates it. Water from Lake St. Moritz serves as the heat source for the hotel's heat pump system as well as that of a neighboring school. Meanwhile, the heat pump has no negative effect on the lake's flora and fauna.

For more information on Badrutt's Palace Hotel www.badruttspalace.com.

 

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