This paper examines the impact of global warming and climate change on skiing by assessing the costs that ski resorts would have to bear in order to address the lack of snow. In this way new development models can be hypothesized for the regional economy in the Aosta Valley, territory located in the West Alps whose economy is largely based on winter tourism.
Starting with a literature review regarding global warming and its effects on the Alps, a methodology of analysis has been implemented in order to assess the relative weaknesses of ski resorts. Additional costs in adaptation strategies have been considered in the light of a major choice ski resorts must face: investing or not. For this analysis, four scenarios of global warming have been taken into consideration.
The lack of snow due to a rise in temperatures will have a big impact on regional ski resorts and will seriously threaten the economy of small lateral valleys. In this scenario, it is important to think about reorganizing the regional ski supply by focusing on stations with better economic results and those strategically well located. In this way, we can safeguard winter tourism in the region and preserve skiing by concentrating costs only in those resorts that are also able to bear new cost adaptation strategies.
The value of this paper is its estimation of the future impact of a rise in the average temperature in regional ski resorts. This impact is assessed in relation to concerns about the reduction of the skiing area and the new costs that ski companies will need to bear. The paper also proposes a new model for the reorganization of the ski supply in the Aosta Valley.