The Disney World image is legendary — from the beautiful landscaping with never a blade of grass out of place, to the clean-cut and smiling cast members. Disney just knows how to do things right, and this has never been more evident than when they take on environmental issues. For many years, Walt Disney World Resort has been committed to minimizing its overall impact on the environment. Particular emphasis is placed on effectively managing resource use through energy conservation and minimizing waste.
These components are key to environmental sustainability in Walt Disney World Resort's day-to-day operations:
- Walt Disney World Resort is an EPA “Energy Star Partner,” installing energy-saving fixtures throughout the property.
- LED fixtures are used in 98 percent of the signs, decorations and Christmas trees at Walt Disney World Resort. And, remarkably, they are in the process of converting the other two percent.
- More energy savings are realized by establishing temperature guidelines that provide a comfortable environment in both guest and cast member areas.
- Disney World’s theme parks have turned off or dimmed external lighting during non-operational hours for icons such as Cinderella Castle, Tree of Life, Mickey’s Sorcerer Hat and Spaceship Earth.
- Walt Disney World Resort maintains Florida’s Green Lodging designation for all 24 resort hotels.
- More than 1,500 fuel-efficient vehicles have been deployed across Walt Disney World Resort. Alternatively fueled vehicles, including hybrids, that help lower emissions range from golf carts to Monorail trains.
- More than 125,000 tons of materials were recycled in 2013, making recycling a huge part of waste management operations at Walt Disney World Resort.
- Approximately 30 percent of Walt Disney World Resort’s overall needs and 80 percent of its irrigation needs are met with reclaimed water.
- The unique “waste” at Disney’s Animal Kingdom and the Tri-Circle D Ranch is sent to a compost facility. In 2013, more than 4,200 tons of manure provided more than 9,000 tons of compost throughout the year.
Wildlife and Animals
- Nearly one-third of Walt Disney World Resort’s approximately 40 square miles of property has been set aside as a dedicated wildlife conservation area.
- Disney’s Animal Programs teams at the Association of Zoos and Aquariums accredited Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Epcot’s The Seas with Nemo and Friends are devoted to the care of more than 1,500 mammals, birds and reptiles; and, more than 5,000 fish, including a number of endangered and threatened species.
- The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund (DWCF) supports scientific research and habitat protection through annual awards for the study and protection of the world's wildlife and ecosystems. In 2010, DWCF awarded almost $1.5 million to nonprofit environmental groups and universities. Florida-based projects have received more than $3.4 million in DWCF grants since its inception in 1995.
How do you have an eco-friendly Disney World vacation? While many of us have adopted an eco-friendly lifestyle at home, keeping those green habits while on vacation may not be so hard after all. Disney World makes it easy to stay green by offering everything from sustainable, local foods to real-life inspiration for conservation in the Animal Kingdom theme park.