SUStAINABLE SLOPES

NZSki is committed to caring for our planet and ensuring snow for future generations by implementing excellent environmental management practices.

What we are doing

NZSki is committed to caring for our planet and ensuring snow for future generations by implementing excellent environmental management practices. The good news is that by using new, less-polluting technologies and conserving energy, we can ensure our ski fields at Mt Hutt, Coronet Peak and The Remarkables are sustainable and will continue to exist for future generations to enjoy.

According to the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), climate modelling shows seasonal snow levels at New Zealand ski areas will be reduced by the effects of climate change in the coming years, but the good news is 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.

NZSki Ltd has teamed up with the Natural Resources Defense Council and the National Ski Areas Association (NSAA) to support its ‘Keep Winter Cool’ campaign. It has also endorsed the NSAA’s environmental charter. Sustainable Slopes provides an overarching framework for ski areas on sustainability and enhanced environmental performance.

The ski industry is one of the industries most at risk from climate change. By adopting sustainable business initiatives to make a difference, NZSki are leading the way in responsible resource and energy use and environmental practices. Our sustainability vision is to:

  • Provide exceptional recreational opportunities for guests and employees while taking the utmost care for and making a commitment to environmental protection and stewardship.
  • Work in conjunction with our suppliers and local government officials to conserve, recycle, reuse and utilise renewable resources in our daily operations.
  • Plan responsible future growth within our community to guarantee protection of our natural resources for future generations.
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SNOW GUNS & FENCING

NZSki undertakes a variety of practices to ensure the sustainability of the ski field for the whole of winter, employing best practice snowmaking, snow grooming and snow farming techniques prior to and throughout the season. Tower mounted snow guns increase productivity by 35% using the same volume of water as any other gun type.

Snow grooming is undertaken in an environmentally sensitive way, including the use of winch cats where possible. Snow farming is also used to capture the maximum amount of snow during storms (e.g. on the Summit) where it can then be re-distributed to high-traffic areas (e.g. sun facing runs).

ENERGY USE

The NZSki Resort Management and Board has a mandate that dictates all new developments within the resort must adhere to at least a five star energy rating or it will not be approved. This will ensure the long-term success of our three premier resorts at Mt Hutt, Coronet Peak and The Remarkables as an energy-efficient tourist destination.

Patrons are also encouraged to use less energy when visiting the resort, with a list of energy-saving tips at each property. Developing stronger consumer awareness of energy use is one of the principles of the Keep Winter Cool initiative.

 

CLIMATE CHANGE

The good news is that by using new, less-polluting technologies and conserving energy, we can ensure our ski fields at Mt Hutt, Coronet Peak and The Remarkables are sustainable and will continue to exist for future generations to enjoy.

According to the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA), climate modelling shows seasonal snow levels at New Zealand ski areas will be reduced by the effects of climate change in the coming years, but the good news is 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.

environmental sustainability

Coronet Peak, Mt Hutt and The Remarkables are award winning ski areas and have been recognised for their efforts in environmental sustainability

coronet peak

Qualmark has recognised us with the Enviro Award Gold, which means Coronet Peak exceeds the highest levels of environmental and social responsibilities and represents strong leadership and advocacy.

The key focus areas for Coronet Peak are:

  • Sustainable land use (reservoirs, native vegetation)
  • Construction that is sympathetic to the natural landform
  • Reduce energy use and by association, carbon emissions.

We acknowledge there is more we can do as a sustainable business but here’s what Coronet Peak ski field has achieved so far:

  • We divert more than 50% of our solid waste from landfill.
  • We use the recycling facilities in Queenstown, and donate our coffee grounds to the Queenstown Harvest Community Gardens to be recycled into fertilizer/compost.
  • We repurpose old materials to create park features and storage solutions.
  • Coronet Peak makes snow from 95% recycled water. The recent project has seen the construction of high-altitude water storage reservoirs, which, at 1200m above sea level, keeps the water at about 0C, making it 20% more efficient for snowmaking than if it were to be sourced elsewhere.
  • Our snowmakers manage a fully automated snowmaking system, which enables us to reduce energy and water wastage. They also catch any snowmelt through the season and reuse it for snowmaking.
  • We saved approximately 10% of our building's electricity usage over the 2013 season with our departments practicing a 'switch it off' campaign.
  • Since 2011, we have reduced our fuel consumption by more than 60,000 litres by focusing on efficient operation of our boilers and snow grooming fleet.
  • We minimise our carbon emissions by back loading all garbage on our freight truck's ensuring that no load is wasted.
  • We provide a state of the art public transport service for both guests and crew and we closely manage our fleet of vehicles to ensure fuel efficiency.
  • Coronet Peak has introduced a Ride Share scheme to and from the mountain, which is promoted on this website, on our trail maps and brochures and in our daily snow reports.
  • We continue to preserve our environment by planting native New Zealand tussock and removing noxious weeds and pests from our Recreation Reserve each summer.
  • We manage our wastewater treatment plant carefully to reduce the levels of nitrogen and BOD in the treated effluent.
  • We purchase biodegradable and recycled products whenever possible.
  • We have a sustainability taskforce established on the mountain looking at feasibility of projects such as solar, biodiesel and organic composting.
  • We are in the process of applying for grants and awards to further sustainability initiatives.
  • We are a leading company in the Queenstown Lakes Sustainable Business Programme with Tourism Industry Association.

the remarkables

Here’s what the The Remarkables ski field has put in place to ensure sustainability:

  • We have taken over the mass transit system ensuring we reduce the number of vehicles used to get to our mountains.

  • All kitchen cooking oil (Canola) is collected by Bio Fuels NZ for refining to be used again as motor fuels.

  • Recycling is managed with the separate collection of plastic, paper and aluminium for recycling at the transfer station in Queenstown.

  • "Switch Off" electricity promotions throughout the base lodge and outlying buildings is in place to reduce power waste through lighting and wall plugs.

  • We monitor fuel efficiency in our fleet of company vehicles.

  • The Remarkables has introduced a Ride Share scheme to and from the mountain, which is promoted on this website, on our trail maps and brochures and in our daily snow reports.

  • All food packaging is made from recycled paper/board; all beverage cups are made from compostable products.

  • Heating throughout the base lodge is thermostatically controlled to reduce electricity waste.

  • Snow grooming operations use the latest engine technology, which ensures we meet the latest European emission standards. Machine operation is monitored to maximise efficiency, therefore minimising fuel use and environmental impact.

  • All used machinery/engine oils are filtered for reuse or recycled.

  • When we undertake any earthworks on site, we re-vegetate modified areas. Seed is collected from the local area and dispersed again over finished ground to assist nature and the re-establishment of native flora and fauna. Where tussock areas are disturbed, the mature plants are removed and relocated to minimise any visual impact and assist nature in renegotiating the land back to its natural state.

  • Grease taps are in place in the facility to prevent excess waste seeping back into the environment.

  • To prevent any long-term disturbance of the natural environment, temporary facilities are located for the winter period and removed in "sensitive" areas once the season operations have concluded.

 

mt hutt

Qualmark has recognised us with the Enviro Award Silver, which represents exceptional levels of resource management and social responsibility.

Here’s what the Mt Hutt ski field has put in place to ensure sustainability:

  • Mt Hutt supports recycling all aluminium, plastics, cardboard, paper and glass and is actively improving guest awareness of our recycling programme through signage on bins and showing recycling stations on our facility maps. We have created a dedicated recycling area using a 20ft container, attached to our base building.

  • Mt Hutt has introduced a Ride Share scheme to and from the mountain, which is promoted on this website, on our trail maps and brochures and in our daily snow reports.

  • We use energy saving light bulbs and have energy efficient units installed in our snowmaking compressors, which also produce lower noise levels.

  • We monitor fuel efficiency in our fleet of company vehicles.

  • Our kitchen cooking oil is processed into bio-diesel.

  • We use environmentally friendly toilet paper and cleaning products.

  • We conduct a number of processes and procedures online and via email to cut down on paper wastage. We use energy efficient flat screen monitors on all our computers and recycle all toner cartridges.

  • Oil from our snow grooming fleet is donated to local machinery enthusiasts for re-use. We have also developed a new system for grooming mountain trails in order to keep diesel consumption of our fleet as low as possible.

  • Our old snowmaking guns have been replaced with state-of-the-art water and energy efficient snow guns.

  • Promoting sustainability and the efficient use of resources is now included in the individual personal performance reviews of all staff.

 

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how you can help

There are many ways you can help our planet - including Ride Share, NZSki’s carpooling scheme.

reduce your impact on the environment

There are many things you can do in your everyday life to care for our planet and reduce your impact on the environment. When you are planning a trip to the snow, consider:

  • Participate in NZSki’s Ride Share (see below) or catch a bus to the ski field instead of driving
  • Making sure you turn off lights and appliances at the power point in your holiday accommodation
  • Purchase environment-friendly products from local sources
  • Reduce, reuse and recycle.

ride share

Ride Share is NZSki’s carpooling scheme

Why should you Ride Share?

  • Save money on fuel
  • Reduce carbon emissions
  • Reduce congestion
  • Meet new friends
  • Get a better parking spot on the mountain (if you’re the only one in your car you will directed to a lower car park after 8:30am).

Ride Share FAQs

What if I’m off to ski First Tracks and there’s no one at the Ride Share pick-up zone?

No problem, we won’t instigate the lower car park policy until after 8.30am by which time you will have already parked and carved up all the fresh tracks.

Why doesn’t NZSki run shuttle services from town?

NZSki existing bus companies do offer paid for shuttle services and they are doing a great job of providing a stress free way to get up the mountain. We highly recommmend it.We are simply trying to encourage less cars to take the trip up and down the mountain by rewarding the rideshare principles of more people per car.

How will I get from the lower car parks to the base building if I come alone?

We run regular shuttles from the lower car parks to the base building. Overall it means that more people can access the base building using less fuel - a good mission don’t you think?

What if I don’t want to share?

If you are the only person in your vehicle, you may be directed to a lower car park but will still have perfectly good access to the base facilities.

More questions?

Call us on 03 450 1970 or visit the Queenstown Snow Centre.

Keep winter cool with less fuel!! 

HOW RIDE SHARE WORKS

  • Sign up with your name, contact number or email at the Ride Share notice boards located or register online
  • Indicate if you wish to be a driver or passenger and tell us the area where you live
  • Others will then be able to arrange to Ride Share with you up the mountain
  • Share petrol costs ~ do offer your driver a few dollars for the ride
  • Get yourself to a Ride Share pick-up zone, then stand by the thumb sign and if drivers on their way up the mountain have room, they will pick you up
  • Or if you are driving, make sure you pick someone up!

Coronet Peak Ride Share pick-up zones:

  • Coronet Peak Hotel car park in Arthur’s Point
  • Top of mountain car park 5.

The Remarkables Ride Share pick-up zones:

  • Base of the ski area road just off SH6
  • Top of mountain below car park 2.

RIDE SHARE ONLINE

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