How big a threat is cli­mate change to Vic­to­ria’s snow in­dus­try?


RIS­ING av­er­age tem­per­a­tures, in­creased rain­fall, and un­pre­dictable weather pat­terns - there’s no doubt that cer­tainty of a de­cent snow sea­son is wan­ing in the 21st cen­tury.

The on­go­ing threat of cli­mate change de­liv­ers a poor prog­no­sis to those in­vested in alpine en­vi­ron­ments.

But closer ex­am­i­na­tion of the fig­ures shows tourism con­tin­ues to thrive, de­spite lesser surety of snow­fall.

Ac­cord­ing to sta­tis­tics from the Alpine Re­sorts Co-or­di­nat­ing Coun­cil, Mt Buller and its na­ture­based coun­ter­part, Mt Stir­ling, have seen over 320,000 tourists driv­ing through the gates since open­ing week­end in early June un­til end of sea­son in mid Septem­ber (2016).

In some weeks, the moun­tains saw a 75 per cent in­crease in tourism from the pre­vi­ous year.

While 2016 brought a healthy dose of snow­fall to the alps, it’s no in­di­ca­tion this year will spell out the same pros­per­ity.

Re­ly­ing on the at­trac­tion of snow is not enough and Mt Buller’s man­age­ment board and staff have de­vised a strat­egy to coun­ter­act the threat of the in­dus­try is un­der.

Louise Per­rin, environmental ser­vices man­ager at Mt Buller and

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