Sunday, January 21, 2007

Well, Kiss Whistler Goodbye

Good news for some, bad news for others. It's bad news for European ski resorts, good news for Canadian ski resorts like Whistler. Good news for wealthy European skiers, bad news for ordinary Canadians.

Europe's alpine ski resorts are in danger of running out of snow. That's the conclusion of a report by the Organization of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Global warming will put an end to all but the highest of European ski resorts.

On the other hand, North America's top resorts in the western mountains are doing just fine - for snow, that is. That's already caused ads for places like Whistler to appear in newspapers in Europe. The message? Want to ski? Head to Canada and don't forget to bring your wallet. Locals who once skied places like Whistler are going to find packed slopes and higher prices brought by increased demand.

"Shardul Agrawala, author of 'Climate Change in the European Alps', said the report shows the impact of global warming is already very real. 'There tends to be a view that climate change is decades away and that it will affect faraway places. But if you look at the Alps, whose recent warming has advanced at three times the average world rate, you can tell it is happening already.'"

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