In Austria’s world-famous ski resort at Kitzbuhel artificial snow lancers are being used to make as much fake snow as possible, as the centre anticipates major energy bill leaps. In the thick of the energy crisis, Austrian ski resorts' cheap power contracts are being frozen out.
"We expect that our energy costs will at least, at least, double this season. We are talking about millions of Euros for us. We have no choice than to pass them on to our customers," says Anton Bodner, head of the Bergbahn Kitzbuehel ski resort and company.
For local ski enthusiasts, the news of the extra cost is a hard pill to swallow.
Klaus Bernert, an avid local skier fears he soon might not be able to hit the slopes as often as usual.
"Now, everything has become about 20-30% more expensive. Another 20-30% and we will no longer be able to afford skiing. Then we would, unfortunately, have to give up our hobby."
Skiing in Austria is a major component of the winter tourism sector, pulling in 3.9% of the country’s national GDP.
Resorts across the Alpine region are trying to remain optimistic, but the warmer winters do not bind well for the industry.
According to Austria’s national meteorological centre, the country’s average snow cover duration has decreased by 40 days since 1961.
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