Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. Earth Science News .




WHITE OUT
Climate change prompts French ski area to mull downsize
by Staff Writers
Grenoble, France (AFP) July 31, 2012


A modest ski area in the French Alps is ready to unbolt its chairlifts and rope off slopes as the local mayor concludes that climate change means the trails ahead will be rocky.

Henri-Victor Tournier, the mayor of Biot, wants to clear cable towers from the 1,230-metre-high (4,000-foot) resort of Drouzin-le-Mont before the next elections in 2014 and convert the area to low-impact alpine activities.

"There are lots of things to do in the mountains without having cables hanging over our heads. People will come, I have no fear of that," he says.

Though Tournier foresees maintaining two draglifts "so youngsters can have fun," he wants to focus on cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, mountain biking and hiking to keep families coming into town.

It lies in the Corbier Pass near better-known ski areas like Morzine and Avoriaz which boast many more slopes and far more reliable snow conditions.

The question is one facing many medium-altitude ski resorts across Europe which have been losing money as spotty snow conditions cause tourists to book holidays elsewhere.

"Medium-altitute resorts will have no future in 10-15 years because of climate change," concluded local official Jean-Yves Moracchini, who supports the mayor's decision.

"The earlier an area transforms itself, the better off it will be," he added.

Drouzin-le-Mont opened in 1973, at a time when many mountain towns were prospecting for "white gold", with two chairlifts, four draglifts and 16 easy to moderately challenging runs.

But early this year, the current owner Michel Vivien decided to call it quits, given that the area was losing up to 150,000 euros ($184,000) per season.

"These areas are not profitable, it is better to close them intelligently," Moracchini says.

That is not the opinion of Jean Beslard, head of an association that claims to represent around 400 local owners of holiday homes and apartments.

"If the area shuts down, apartments will lose between a quarter and half of their value," Beslard estimates.

He has threatened to get the owners to register as local voters and oust Tournier in the next elections.

Real-estate developer Maurice Martin has said he is ready to take on the challenge as long as he can build around one hundred new housing units, which is not possible under current local zoning laws.

French tourism minister Sylvia Pinel said last week that she wanted to draw up a "renovation plan for tourist housing to restore the image of French (ski) areas" to make them more attractive as year-round destinations.

The plan would focus on medium-altitude resorts, Pinel said.

According to Laurent Reynaud, head of a French association that comprises 236 ski area operators, shutting down a resort is an "extremely rare" event.

One that did close, temporarily, is nearby Abondance, which initially decided to ditch alpine skiing in 2007.

US investors re-opened it two years later, but they pulled out with heavy losses in 2011, leaving the area in the hands of Biot.

With snowfall officially forecast to decline by 30-50 percent in the French Alps over the next 30 years, other ski areas will face similar choices.

Hiking appears to be an obvious fall-back option, along with activities like alpine slides and health spas.

.


Related Links
It's A White Out at TerraDaily.com






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





WHITE OUT
Russian developer's resort gets go ahead in Swiss Alps
Geneva (AFP) July 24, 2012
A Russian property developer has been given the green light to begin building a 650-million-franc mountain resort after Switzerland's highest court ended five years of opposition to the project. "We haven't won yet, we will have when the first tourists arrive" in 2016, Vladimir Marakutsa, director of Aminona Luxury Resort and Village (ALRV), told reporters on Tuesday. Switzerland's feder ... read more


WHITE OUT
Sri Lanka navy urges Australia to deport boatpeople

Samurai festival returns to disaster-hit Japan

UNHCR official to visit Rakhine state

EU discusses new NGO law with Russia

WHITE OUT
Quantifying the Environmental Impact of Structural Materials with B-PATH

Northrop Grumman GATOR Radar System Delivered to Wallops Island for the Start of Government Developmental Testing

Jury picked in blockbuster Apple-Samsung case

BELLA Laser Achieves World Record Power at One Pulse Per Second

WHITE OUT
Delving into the molecular mechanism behind deep-sea bacteria's pressure tolerance

Scotland moves to defuse 'prawn war'

Ancient reservoir could bring water to dry Namibia

'Red tide' species is deadlier than first thought

WHITE OUT
China to build first polar-expedition icebreaker

Hidden rift valley discovered beneath West Antarctica reveals new insight into ice loss

Scientists find Grand Canyon-sized rift under Antarctic ice

Tropical plankton invade Arctic waters

WHITE OUT
Public strongly supports programs helping farmers adapt to climate change

Study: All chickens have Asian roots

Japanese Kobe beef debuts in Hong Kong

Isolated Paraguay pledged farmers' support

WHITE OUT
UN heads for flood-hit areas in North Korea

N. Korea forecasts new storm damage after deadly floods

Geothermal activity seen in New Zealand

Death toll from Beijing floods rises to 77: Xinhua

WHITE OUT
Panetta to visit North Africa, Middle East

Brother of exiled Rwandan ex-army chief gets 9 years' jail

Mozambique told to tackle crime

New sapphire find sends panners into Madagascar lemur park

WHITE OUT
Piglets in mazes provide insights into human cognitive development

Genomic study of Africa's hunter-gatherers elucidates human variation and ancient interbreeding

Unprecedented accuracy in locating brain electrical activity with new device

The longer you're awake, the slower you get




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement