Aspen first U.S. city to join Mountain Partnership

By Real Aspen
August 24, 2010

The City of Aspen has been welcomed as the newest member of the Mountain Partnership, an international voluntary alliance dedicated to improving the lives of mountain people and protecting mountain environments around the world.

“By joining, Aspen is becoming part of a partnership that is comprised of 50 countries, 16 intergovernmental organizations and over 100 major non-governmental organizations,” said Sally Spaulding, community relations director for the City of Aspen. “Membership, which is free, will stimulate sharing of diverse resources, knowledge and expertise on topics such as global warming and watershed management.”

Aspen is the first American governmental entity to join.

The Mountain Partnership has the direct involvement of the United Nations Environment Program, is hosted by the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization and is partly funded by the governments of Italy and Switzerland.

“Over the years, through both policies and programs aimed at creating a more sustainable economy and environment for its citizens… Aspen has demonstrated real innovation, leadership and commitment to sustainable development principles,” said Doug McGuire, Mountain Partnership secretariat.

Along with the City, Aspen International Mountain Forum (AIMF) was also inducted into the Mountain Partnership. Since 1995, when this group convened a major environmental conference in Aspen's Sister City of Shimukappu, Japan, AIMF has been working to support local and international efforts to improve mountain environments, promote sustainability and increase public dialogue. AIMF was instrumental in Aspen's inclusion to the Partnership.

"It is an extraordinary honor for AIMF and the City of Aspen to have been invited to be members of this important partnership," said Karinjo DeVore, president of AIMF. "It’s hugely significant that Aspen has taken a leadership role in America through its membership."

The City of Aspen and the Aspen International Mountain Forum will officially announce their membership with a proclamation at the opening of MountainSummit: Mountain Film in Aspen at the Wheeler Opera House on Thursday, August 26, at 5:15 p.m.

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