One of World’s Largest Ski Resort Operators Switching all Groomers to Biofuel Next Season

The Compagnies de Alpes Group which runs several of the world’s largest ski areas and is Europe’s biggest ski areas operator is stepping up its initiatives to fight climate change.

The company, which runs the ski areas of Paradiski (La Plagne, Les Arcs), Tignes and Val d’Isère, much of the 3 Valleys (Méribel and Les Menuires), Serre Chevalier, the Grand Massif (Flaine) and  holds stakes in the ski areas of Megève, Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, Avoriaz, la Rosière and Valmorel committed last year to achieving Net Zero Carbon (NZC) by 2030.

Among many initiatives the company’s ski lifts mostly run on green electricity but the newly announced commitment for next winter is that the 130 slope grooming tractors maintaining the group’s ski slopes will all switch to using synthetic biofuel HVO (vegetable oil hydrotreated water produced from waste) from next winter.

“Grooming represents the primary source of greenhouse gas emissions from the Group’s mountain activities, with nearly 80% of its direct carbon footprint due to the use of fossil fuels. Reducing our consumption and getting out of fossil fuels on this item is therefore a priority subject for the CDA,” the company said in a press statement.

The move follows testing in Les Arcs and then in La Plagne last season. The fuel used is of 100% renewable origin and made from waste fats and used vegetable oils, and palm oil free, compatible with the devices of all the Group’s partner manufacturers.

The diesel substitute reduces the CO2 and 65% fine particles emitted and the move will mean a reduction of 9,900 tonnes of CO2 equivalenteach year, equivalent of 72% of direct carbon emissions from mountain activities, other than electricity.

“Faced with the multiple challenges facing the French mountains, Compagnie des Alpes is determined to explore new approaches at the very heart of its activities, particularly in ski areas, in order to share and move forward with all the players in the territory towards a sustainable future,” said Dominique THILLAUD, Managing Director of Compagnie des Alpes.

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