Low-lying ski resorts fear climate change

Despite heavy snowfall recently, the long-term future of low and mid-altitude ski resorts in Switzerland remains uncertain. (RTS/

This content was published on February 23, 2015 - 10:08

Swiss public television, RTS, reports there is now 30% less snow than 35 years ago in smaller resorts in lower-lying regions. This is a result of average temperatures rising by 1.5 degrees Celsius in Switzerland over the past century. 

Based on assessments made by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a forecast has been provided on how the country’s climate is expected to change over the 21st century. By 2100, summer temperatures are expected to increase by 3.5 degrees Celsius and winter temperatures should increase by 3 degrees Celsius. 

Climate experts say people will be able to ski for many more years in Switzerland, but good winter conditions will be less and less common.

In the long run the situation may become critical for some small ski resorts, like La Dôle or Sainte-Croix/Les Rasses, in canton Vaud in western Switzerland. 

Beyond snow cannons, the future of the resorts can only be saved by providing a more varied range of tourist and sporting activities all year round.

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

Sort by

Change your password

Do you really want to delete your profile?

Your subscription could not be saved. Please try again.
Almost finished... We need to confirm your email address. To complete the subscription process, please click the link in the email we just sent you.

Discover our weekly must-reads for free!

Sign up to get our top stories straight into your mailbox.

The SBC Privacy Policy provides additional information on how your data is processed.