In mountain towns across the United States that rely on winter tourism, snow is
currency. For snow lovers and the winter sports industry, predictions of a future with
warmer winters, reduced snowfall, and shorter snow seasons is inspiring them to
innovate, increase their own efforts to address emissions, and speak publicly on the
urgent need for action.
This report examines the economic contribution of winter snow sports tourism to
U.S. national and state-level economies. In a 2012 analysis, Protect Our Winters and
the Natural Resources Defense Council found that the winter sports tourism industry
generates $12.2 billion and 23 million Americans participate in winter sports annually.
That study found that changes in the winter season driven by climate change were
costing the downhill ski resort industry approximately $1.07 billion in aggregated
revenue over high and low snow years over the last decade.
Earth Systems Research Center
Protect Our Winters, Boulder, CO
Hagenstad, M., E.A. Burakowski, and R. Hill. 2018. Economic Contributions of Winter Sports in a Changing Climate. Protect Our Winters, Boulder, CO, USA. Feb. 23, 2018.