Moab's Radical Conversion

SLICKROCK SPIN: Moab Mountain Biking     Photo: courtesy, Utah Office of Tourism/Frank Jensen

It's not like we needed another reason to love Moab. But we've got one: Utah's red-rock mecca for adventure sports is pursuing one of the most ambitious green-energy policies of any town in the West. The movement is led by mayor and 35-year resident Dave Sakrison, 61, who was elected in 2000 and three years later had government offices supplying half their kilowatt-hours with emissions-free wind power. He then successfully challenged 15 percent of residents and 40 percent of businesses to do the same a move that coincided with Moab's recognition as the EPA's first Green Power Community and in 2005 finished construction on a geothermally heated and cooled city hall. This April, the Moab Chevron station will install southern Utah's first biodiesel tanks. Meanwhile, mountain bikers coming to town for the storied 12-mile Slickrock Trail can turn to Moab Cyclery, which powers its shop with an eight-megawatt solar-electric system and runs five 15-passenger vans on used veggie oil (bike rental with shuttle, $50; moabcyclery.com). Off the trail, there's the carbon-offset River Canyon Lodge (doubles from $59; rivercanyonlodge.com).

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