What's causing climate change?
Although climate change is a complex problem with many underlying issues, it is tied to increased CO2 emissions. As CO2 emissions have increased, global temperatures have risen. Unfortunately, the ski industry is adding to these emissions.
"A single skier averages about 20 kilowatt-hours of energy consumption per day - the same amount a refrigerator uses in two weeks. Snowcats average six gallons of fuel an hour, and snowmaking is even more energy intensive." (Fox, 128)
As less snow is falling, ski resorts tend to make more artificial snow, which takes large sums of energy - thus contributing to emissions and making the problem worse. Also, skiers and snowboarders commute to ski resorts and contribute to global emissions.
How's climate change going to change the ski industry?
Already, Utahns are experiencing shorter winters and less precipitation - and it's only going to get worse if action is not taken.The ski industry in Utah effects far more than just snow sport enthusiasts.
"Skiers and scientists will tell you the same thing: Utah is getting warmer and it is getting drier. That means shorter winters and dramatic changes in the weather patterns that skiers in the west depend on for the unmatched snow conditions they enjoy." - Sheldon Whitehouse
What would happen if Utah's snowpack continues to decrease and/or the ski season is shortened?
- Job loss
- Damage to Utah's economy
- Less tourism
- Increased incidence of avalanches due to low snowpack