Thursday, December 16, 2010

Less snow but better snowmakers for skifields

Ev says humbug ... I want the real McCoy not some machine made powder pooff ... maybe a little earthquake would help raise the mountains a bit to combat this global warming thingo ... or maybe we just need to vote for global cooling ...

Less snow but better snowmakers for skifields

New Zealand will have less snow by the end of the century, but not as little as initially thought, and better snow-making machines will help skifields cope, according to new climate modelling by the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (Niwa).

It was the first time a quantitative assessment of the potential impact of climate change on snow levels has been done in New Zealand.

Niwa scientists created three different emissions scenarios, which were used to calculate how the different levels of climate change could affect snow levels for the years 2030-2049 and 2080-2099.

They found:

* On average, at nearly all elevations, there will be a gradual decrease in snow as the century progresses.

* The decrease is more marked at elevations below 1000m.

Depending on skifield location and elevation, under a warmer climate change scenario, by 2090, on average, current maximum snow depths at the upper elevation sites will be further reduced, to approximately 79 per cent to 35 per cent.

The reductions were less marked for mid-range climate change scenario.

"Fortunately for New Zealand, we are unlikely to see the more extreme impacts predicted in Europe and Australia. Our modelling shows that the loss may actually be less than originally anticipated and we should be able to continue to make snow, even under a more extreme climate scenario, right out to the 2090s," said Niwa snow and ice scientist Jordy Hendrikx....

read full article here....