Mountaineers of Iceland – Environmental Policy
Mountaineers of Iceland operate mostly in the pristine nature of Iceland. Mountaineers care for and hold deep respect for nature and the environment. Mountaineers are determined to preserve Iceland‘s precious nature and contribute to its protection and preservation. Main emphasis is placed on binding CO2 in the form of reclamation and reforestation. Most of Mountaineers‘ operation takes place on Langjökull, where we operate Iceland‘s largest snowmobile fleet. Mountaineers are aware of the significant CO2 emission due to the heavy machinery in operation; glacier trucks, super jeeps, and snowmobiles. It is a sad fact that due to global warming, the world‘s glaciers are rapidly melting and that in about 100 years, Langjokull might be gone. Therefore, Mountaineers strive to support CO2 binding projects and are working in close cooperation with the Soil Conservation Service of Iceland (SCSI) to support reclamation and reforestation in areas around Bláskógabyggð, close to Mountaineers main area of operation.
The company has already undergone the work of calculating CO2 emission from its machinery and is supporting SCSI to undertake reclamation and reforestation projects in Bláskógabyggð that will carbon neutralise our emission. SCSI has provided extensive support in calculating Mountaineers CO2 emissions. SCSI has also already marked a specific geographical region, typical Icelandic wasteland, within Bláskógabyggð that is most suitable for reclamation and would make a significant positive impact in that region. In this way, it is possible to carbon neutralise Mountaineers‘ operation by planting enough vegetation and trees that will serve to bind the CO2 and hence create a balance between the emission and binding of CO2. Mountaineers‘ goal is to be a leading example in this field and serve as role model for other companies to follow suit.
Mountaineers are planning a booking system where customers have the option of paying extra 4 USD when they book tours with us. This extra fund will then go undivided into supporting Mountaineers‘ environmental projects, mainly reclamation and reforestation projects in Bláskógabyggð. Mountaineers are aware of similar arrangements with other tour operators that have had successful results.
Lately, there has been much advancement in the field of electric vehicles, and the development of electric snowmobiles is no exception. It is Mountaineers future goal to test drive these new snowmobiles, and if they prove well in the Icelandic environment, to replace a part of our traditional fossil fuel snowmobiles for the more environmentally friendly electric ones. It is clear that it is more rational to utilise our local clean energy instead of using polluting fossil fuel, transported across the world with associated expenses. It is estimated that the first electric snowmobiles will be launched in 2018 and therefore enough time to prepare the ground.
Mountaineers also focus on other areas of environmental protection. We have adopted a system where litter is sorted into metal, plastics, and glass for recycling. We also seperate organic waste, as well as bottles and aluminium cans for recycling.
Mountaineers‘ goal is to make dedicated efforts to protect and conserve the environment and contribute to sustainable tourism in Iceland. In order to achieve that goal, Mountaineers will take into serious consideration the environmental guidelines raised by Vakinn, the quality and environmental system for Icelandic tourism.