Guest essay by Eric Worrall
They can’t help themselves, their models predict a level of warming which would melt most of the snow.
Is skiing dead due to global warming?
Dear EarthTalk: With the onset of global warming, how likely is it that ski resorts and skiing itself might soon become a thing of the past?
— Mandy Billings, Provo, UT
Last winter’s low snow year and unseasonably warm temperatures across much of the American West meant a bad year for business for some ski resorts, and also left many of us wondering whether skiing would even be possible in the warmer world we’re getting as we continue to pump out greenhouse gases.
“Our recent modeling suggests that under a high emissions scenario, skiing could be very limited to non-existent in parts of the country by the end of this century, particularly in lower elevations — such as the northeast, Midwest and lower mountains around the West,” says Cameron Wobus, lead author on a 2017 study projecting climate change impacts on skiing across the U.S. “Things look better mid-century, so this dire future for skiing isn’t imminent — and things also look much better under a more aggressive greenhouse gas mitigation scenario, so this future also isn’t inevitable.”
The abstract of Wobus’ 2017 report;
Projected climate change impacts on skiing and snowmobiling: A case study of the United States
Cameron Wobus, Eric E. Small, Heather Hosterman, David Mills, Justin Stein, Matthew Rissing, Russell Jones, Michael Duckworth, Ronald Hall, Michael Kolian, Jared Creason, Jeremy Martinich
We use a physically-based water and energy balance model to simulate natural snow accumulation at 247 winter recreation locations across the continental United States. We combine this model with projections of snowmaking conditions to determine downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling season lengths under baseline and future climates, using data from five climate models and two emissions scenarios. Projected season lengths are combined with baseline estimates of winter recreation activity, entrance fee information, and potential changes in population to monetize impacts to the selected winter recreation activity categories for the years 2050 and 2090. Our results identify changes in winter recreation season lengths across the United States that vary by location, recreational activity type, and climate scenario. However, virtually all locations are projected to see reductions in winter recreation season lengths, exceeding 50% by 2050 and 80% in 2090 for some downhill skiing locations. We estimate these season length changes could result in millions to tens of millions of foregone recreational visits annually by 2050, with an annual monetized impact of hundreds of millions of dollars. Comparing results from the alternative emissions scenarios shows that limiting global greenhouse gas emissions could both delay and substantially reduce adverse impacts to the winter recreation industry.
I suspect the repeated absurd “end of snow” predictions, regularly switched to claims that global warming causes MORE snow and colder winters whenever the Northern Hemisphere gets a good dump, will be the final undoing of the climate movement.
It is just too obvious that they appear to be making it up as they go.