Skiing Green

While riding up the chairlift you’re most likely mapping out your route down the mountain or checking out the view. Thoughts about the energy required to power that chairlift or the amount of water needed to feed the snow machines most likely never enter your mind. Fortunately, the ski resorts are continuously considering how such factors will effect the environment. From wind-powered chairlifts to recycling old uniforms, more and more ski resorts are beginning to use eco-friendly practices. Below you’ll find some green-initiatives already in use by the skiing community.

Sharing Warmth Around the Globe (SWAG)
The National Ski Area Association created SWAG in order to donate old ski resort uniforms to those in need throughout the the world.

Conserving Water Used for Snowmaking
Ski areas such as Pats Peak have created snow reservoirs to use for snowmaking instead of using lake or stream water. Wachusett Mountain has also installed a more efficient, low energy snowmaking system.

Eco-Friendly Chair Lifts
Numerous ski areas are beginning to use renewable energy such as wind, hydro-electric, solar, and methane to power lifts. Others are installing more energy efficient motors and lighting as well as using lift towers that don’t require paint. Shawnee Peak hopes to offset 100% of their energy use by purchasing wind power.

Environmental Education
Through their Naturalist Program, Mad River Glen hopes to inspire young people to become involved with environmental conservation. The program offers year-round recreational activities as well as a naturalist summer camp for kids.

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