Ski resort solutions

The solution

Screen shot 2014-01-14 at 8.35.11 PMThe best long-term solution – undeniably the cheapest and the most sustainable one – would be to look at the problem from another perspective. When trails are “healthy” and so vegetated with indigenous species then the slopes will be stable hydrologically, mechanically and ecologically. The roots systems will play its role in alleviating the topsoil for better water catchment and less evaporation, this way snow accumulation will be immediate on a soft bed creating an extra layer between to ground and the snow cover, remaining in better conditions throughout the winter making it worthwhile with a prolonged season. This way the snow accumulation will be of higher quality and kept in better condition and when it melts, then water will drain at a natural speed underneath the vegetation layer leaving the upper snow cover intact. The discharge will happen at a slower pace causing less waste through evaporation and damages to the slope.

In order to achieve this goal, dripping irrigation systems must be installed underneath the surface in strategic areas where such damages have been caused or where they are potentially under risks and where vegetation is lacking or null. This will ensure healthy and abundant vegetation cover to stabilize the slope for multi season use and avoid known environmental degradation.

Excessive dependence on snow cannons would disrupt the Alpine ecosystem. Winter tourism cannot be practiced at the expense of the summer. Slopes have to be well maintained throughout the seasons to ensure maximum profitability by extended skiing days and minimal expenses in maintenance, thus increasing revenues both in winter and summer.

valley-floor-ski-mountain 2Summer tourism will play an increasingly important role for winter resorts. For example, Davos in Switzerland currently makes 60 percent of its annual turnover in winter, and 40 percent in summer. That ratio will change in the future, probably in the direction of a 50:50 split. In coming years, people will be coming to the cool mountains instead of heading to the hot summer beaches. Climate change is also an opportunity for the Alps.

Together with the world leader in irrigation systems – expert in complex water problem solving – we have studied the issues of mountain environment and are now searching for two pilot resorts to conduct the first applied experiments of a kind.

If your ski resort is interested to take part in this unique innovative and crucial environmental project for immediately benefits, please contact us with no further delay.