Thu, 21 Sep 2023

Paris [France], September 16 (ANI): Unusually high temperatures have caused snow to melt, forcing French ski resorts to close. As winter approaches, there isn't enough snow to continue operations at yet another ski resort in France, CNN reported.

La Sambuy, a town that operates a family skiing resort close to Mont Blanc in the French Alps, has chosen to demolish its ski lifts because, as a result of global warming, its ski season has been reduced to a few short weeks, making it unprofitable to keep them open.

"Before, we used to have snow practically from the first of December up until the 30th of March," La Sambuy's mayor, Jacques Dalex, told CNN.

Last winter, however, there was only"four weeks of snow, and even then, not much snow," he added. That meant "very quickly, stones and rocks appeared on the piste."The resort will only be able to operate for less than five weeks in January and February, according to Dalex, and will likely have an operating loss of about 500,000 euros (USD 530,000). The annual expense of maintaining lifts alone is 80,000 euros.

La Sambuy isn't a huge resort, with only three lifts and a small number of skis running up to a peak elevation of 1,850 metres (about 6,070 feet).

However, with a range of slopes from expert "black" to beginner "green" and reasonably priced ski passes, it was well-liked by families looking for a more laid-back Alps experience than what was available at larger, higher-altitude locations.

'On The Snow', a UK snow report website, describes it as "an idyllic place to visit, with exceptional panoramic views and everything you need in a friendly resort."The town council of La Sambuy decided to shut down the resort, which has been open since 2016, this summer as the winter planning season approached. It is hoped that the town will continue to draw tourists despite the impending demolition of its skiing facilities.

The resort, which promotes itself as a summer hiking and outdoor destination, will change, according to Dalex, into a location for "discovering and protecting nature, going for walks, and doing sports, if possible."In France, not just La Sambuy is experiencing a ski resort crisis. Another small Alpine ski resort, Saint-Firmin, decided to demolish its ski lift last year after noticing that its winter season had shrunk from months to weeks, a circumstance that was also attributed to climate change.

A French environmental organisation called Mountain Wilderness claims to have demolished 22 ski lifts in France since 2001 and believes there are still 106 ski lifts scattered across 59 sites throughout the nation, according to CNN.

53 per cent of the 2,234 ski resorts surveyed in Europe are predicted to experience "a very high snow supply risk" at 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) of global warming above pre-industrial levels, without the use of artificial snow, according to a report published in August by the scientific journal Nature Climate Change.

According to a report that was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in January, there is a "substantial possibility" that global temperature increases would exceed this 2-degree Celsius mark by the middle of the century.

However, not everyone in his town is prepared to give up easily.

This year, an organisation called Tous Ensemble Pour La Sambuy (All Together For La Sambuy) started a petition asking to keep the resort, as well as others, open by adopting a new more "durable" model, particularly by running the chair lift in the summer to transport tourists up the mountain.

More than 1,900 people have signed the petition, and according to Christian Bailly, the association's president, the group is filing a lawsuit to overturn the town council's decision, CNN reported. (ANI)

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