Endangered Ski Areas

Endangered Ski Areas

Flickr/Jack Heddon

According to the article Managing for climate change in the alpine ski sector in the journal Tourism Management, Sugarloaf is just one of many Northeast areas that will suffer from climate change. Even under low-emission scenarios, the authors believe Sugarloaf may not be able to stay open for 100 days annually–the period of time estimated necessary for a resort to be economically viable. The report estimates that major changes will likely occur between 2010-2039.

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A lack of elevation in Australia will likely mean that ski resorts across the country will be forced to close, said Daniel Scott, the Canada Research Chair in Global Change and Tourism at the University of Waterloo.

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According to the NRDC report, a temperature increase of seven degrees in the Rocky Mountains would endanger the Aspen ski area, leaving just a small reserve of snow on the top quarter of its mountain.

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Scott named this ski area as a particularly vulnerable spot for climate change in Europe.

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Killington is another ski resort in the Northeast that is likely to lose its economic viability between 2010 and 2039.

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A seven-degree temperature change would hit Park City even worse than Aspen. The area would lose its entire snow pack.

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The low elevation of the runs at Stowe Mountain Resortbetween 1,559 to 3,719 feetmake the area vulnerable to global warming. Like the other Northeast ski spots mentioned here, it could soon be out of business.