Ski Holidays and CO2 Emissions

Grafik Sommer und Winter Berg mit Häusern

(c) Stubaier Gletscher | Fachverband Seilbahnen, WKÖ

Are skiing holidays really that bad for your CO2 footprint?

 

Every holiday is connected with mobility, temporary accommodation and various leisure time activities – all these cause greenhouse gas emissions.

 

The Federal Environment Agency has compared typical types of holidays based on their greenhouse gas emissions.
 

The amount of these emissions depends on many parameters. In addition to the nature of the holidays, the duration, the means of traffic used for getting there and back, the accommodation as well as the types of activities pursued in the holidays contribute to the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).

Based on typical Austria-specific parameters for the duration of the stay and the number of holidaying persons, illustration 1 shows the following picture of greenhouse gas emissions per person and day for different types of holidays.

Skiurlaub und CO² Emission
Abbildung 1: Treibhausgasemissionen in kg CO2-eq der unterschiedlichen Urlaubsszenarien, bezogen auf den Tag und pro Person.

Picture 1: greenhouse gas emissions in kg CO2-eq of different holiday scenarios, based on a day and per person.

 

The results show that the travel distance and the choice of the means of traffic for getting there and back are far more important than the activities pursued in the holiday destination.

 

The activities during the winter and summer holidays have the lowest share of GHG emissions.

The accommodation is responsible for significantly more emissions than the activities pursued during your holidays. The emissions arising from the accommodation are highly  dependent on the amenities offered by the hotel. Exclusive hotel categories (five stars) have a considerably higher share of GHG emissions per square metre and guest, in addition they often offer energy-intensive services such as sauna areas or heated pools. Moreover, the type of energy supply of the hotels play a role.

The distance of the journey to get to your holiday destination has the biggest influence on the greenhouse gas balance. The farther away from your holiday destination you live, the more likely you are to take a place. Air travel contributes more than average to emissions. High emissions from air travel are less significant for longer stays than for short breaks. Many short breaks in connection to air travel put the heaviest load on the climate.

The most significant GHG saving options ranked by impact on the balance are: the travel distance, the choice of the means of traffic and the type of accommodation. The activities pursued during your holidays are of minor relevance.

(Source: study of the Umweltbundesamt Oct 2018, on behalf of the WKÖ, trade association of lifts, in cooperation with Wintersport-Tirol)

Green Mountain

We can do even more!

We have always believed in electric means of transport. We are proud of the beauty of nature and the fantastic scenery of the Stubai Glacier world. To keep it that way, we are constantly working to reduce CO2 emissions. The building of the 3S Eisgratbahn, which was completed in 2016, also contributes to this. Because of its special design, it requires less energy because the friction losses are significantly lower compared to monocable lifts. At higher utilization of the downhill riding cabins, electricity is even generated and fed into the grid.  


The additional electricity needed for snow-making and water pumps, lifts, building heating and lighting is sourced from 100% renewable energy.  

Further measures of the Stubai Glacier to reduce CO2 emissions:

  • Financing of the free ski buses in the Stubai Valley enables the guests leave their cars at home/at the hotel during their holidays.
  • 4 electric car charging stations at the car park of the Stubai Glacier lift
  • Employee shuttles
  • Short transport routes of the food – local produce is used at the restaurants
  • Employee accommodation: to shorten the journey to work
  • Recycling  of waste in the altogether 29 public waste separation stations
  • Waste collection activities during the entire summer and additional on two action days. Please make your contribution too and pack take your waste with you!

With the choice of the accommodation and in particular of the means of traffic you use for getting there and back you have the opportunity to considerably influence the total emissions of your holidays. It is in your hands.

Please send us your suggestions and ideas to nachhaltigkeit@stubaier-gletscher.com

 

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