Sustainability at the SkiArena Andermatt-Sedrun
Lifts and snow cannons in Andermatt and Sedrun are operated with 100% renewable energy. The water used for making snow is mostly drawn from the streams and lakes found on the mountain, and it returns there after the ski season.
Climate and environmental protection
- Renewable energy
One hundred percent of the electric power in the area serviced by the Urseren Power Plant and Energia Alpina comes from renewable sources. The companies operate hydroelectric power plants and wind turbines in the region.
- Partnership with POW
The SkiArena is a partner of Protect Our Winters Switzerland. By making this commitment to climate protection, it is helping to ensure that future generations will also be able to look forward to snowy winters.
- Reduced energy consumption
In collaboration with Cleantech Agentur Schweiz (“act”), the company has taken steps to lower energy consumption and CO₂ emissions. Every year, the participating locations have exceeded the targets that they have agreed to with act since 2015.
- Public transportation
The SkiArena encourages travel to the resort using public transportation. In collaboration with a number of coach operators, the Ski Express conveniently brings guests from larger Swiss cities directly to the ski area. The SkiArena also works with RailAway, a subsidiary of Swiss Federal Railways that provides leisure excursions with public transportation, to offer an attractive ticket that combines travel to Andermatt with a ski pass.
- Green PistenBully
In the 2020/21 winter season, Andermatt-Sedrun Sport AG put its first hybrid PistenBully into operation. Compared with a traditional diesel vehicle, the PistenBully cuts the emission of greenhouse gases by 20% and soot particulate by 99%. In the coming years, the SkiArena will continue to modernise its vehicle fleet with such innovative, low-emission models.
- Minimal helicopter deployments
Most avalanches are detonated terrestrially, rather than from helicopters. In addition, most accident runs are handled using rescue sleds. The decision depends on the severity of the injury and on how far the injured person had to be transported. Only about 20 to 25% of injured skiers are flown by helicopter to the hospital.
- Intelligent snow making
Most of the snow-making equipment at the SkiArena was purchased when the ski area was expanded, and it meets current standards in terms of the efficiency and effectiveness of artificial snow making. Older snow-making equipment will be replaced in the coming years and the new ones integrated into the currently existing snow-making management.
The SkiArena has introduced SnowSat, a system for measuring snow depth, which enables the SkiArena to offer guests perfect pistes while at the same time preserving the environment by producing only as much artificial snow as needed. All pistes have now been surveyed, and the retooling of the snow groomer fleet is well under way.
- Snow farming
Snow farming involves the creation of large snow depots in the spring, which are then covered with fleece. This preserves most of the snow until the fall, when it can be used again to groom the slopes. By doing so, the SkiArena saves on energy and costs for artificial snow making.
- Glacier covering
For nearly 20 years, the Gurschen glacier has been put under a blanket of snow and white fleece each spring. This slows the melting of the glacier ice during the summer.
- Local embedding
Where possible, maintenance work that the SkiArena team cannot handle directly is performed by local companies in order to keep travel distances short and preserve value creation in the region. As a rule, regional trades are always given preference.
- Clean-up Days
Together with various partners and volunteers from throughout Switzerland, the SkiArena holds an annual Clean-up Day. Participants scour the grounds of the ski area to collect trash left behind during the winter season.
- Jobs and training positions
The SkiArena employs 70 people in the summer season and about 200 in the winter season. Each year, the SkiArena offers an apprenticeship for youths studying gondola mechatronic engineering. Four apprentices are currently employed. In this way, the SkiArena is developing the next generation of operational staff and making its contribution to maintaining the Swiss cableways industry.
- Value creation in the region
By creating and preserving jobs, and by working together with partners, service providers and suppliers in the area, the SkiArena is making a sustainable contribution to local value creation.
About 75% of the fleece-covered snow remains intact over the summer. This saves energy and water.
The power used to make snow at the ski area and to operate the SkiArena equipment comes from 100% renewable sources.
At the annual Clean-Up Day, volunteers collect litter that accumulated in the ski area and car parks during the winter. In 2021 the trash totalled 263 kilos.