Industria de schi se confruntă cu efectele schimbărilor climatice, cum ar fi sezoanele de schi mai scurte și pârtiile fără zăpadă, ce vor determina multe stațiuni să se închidă sau să își adapteze modelul de afaceri pentru a face față. Anzère, o stațiune de schi din Europa, a fost nevoită să închidă unele pârtii din cauza lipsei de ninsoare și a vremii ploioase de la începutul sezonului de iarnă 2023. În Alpi s-au înregistrat temperaturi record de Crăciun și Anul Nou, ajungând până la 20,9 C.
A 2018 study found that the ski season in US ski resorts has shortened by an average of 34 days between 1982 and 2016. In some European resorts, the season has shortened by weeks over the last 30 years.
Moreover, ski resorts below 1,800-2,000m will need to increase their use of artificial snow to keep their slopes open. This could lead to a 79% increase in water consumption by 2100 and could cause conflict between the skiing industry and local communities who rely on the water for hydropower.
Ski resorts will also face increasing operational costs. Snow ploughs and snow cannons are energy-intensive.
Some resorts (especially lower-lying ones) are already adapting their businesses to prepare for a future with less snow , by offering activities like hiking, biking, and other outdoor activities that don't rely on snow. Additionally, some resorts are focusing on developing sustainable energy sources and eco-friendly accommodations.
Ski resorts have an important role to play in the fight against climate change, even if some of them are unable to change their own fate. They can help the public understand what is at stake from climate change and advocate for solutions. Ski resorts are the perfect messenger for highlighting the reality of the climate crisis.