The climate is changing – this we know. Temperatures, on average, are rising across the U.S., resulting in unpredictable weather patterns. Ski resorts that could in the past bank on heavy snowfall all season long are left waiting and watching, putting a whole industry in limbo. So how will climate change affect the future of the ski industry?

How is skiing at risk?

In Part 1, we explored what the ski industry stands to lose if the climate continues to change for the worse. But in what ways would a warmer climate disrupt the ski industry?

The predicted rise in temperature around the world is alarming, to say the least. And with it comes not only less snowfall but a loss of the kind of quality snow that skiers are willing to pony up for.

Warmer temperatures would also lead to a shortened ski season that begins later and ends sooner, making it increasingly harder to hit the 100-Day Rule, the rule of thumb that says ski resorts need to have a snow covering of at least 30cm for 100 days a season to be commercially viable.

Data has shown that during winters with low amounts of snowfall, resorts and mountain towns experience an unsustainable drop in the number of visitors and dollars spent there. If temperatures continue to rise at their current pace these low-snow winters will happen much more frequently, and many ski resorts will be unable to survive.

All credit for data used in infographic goes to Protect Our Winters. View their 2018 Economic Report to see the full findings of their research.

Climate change and skiing part 2 -

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