The 10 energy efficient snow guns are expected to reduce the resort’s average annual snowmaking energy use by approximately 378,000 kilowatt hours, representing enough electricity to power 42 homes in northern Nevada for a year. NV Energy officials said it shows an annual reduction of 283 tons of carbon emissions.
Heavenly Mountain Ski Resort in South Lake Tahoe, Calif., installed 10 energy efficient snow guns over the summer to cut costs for producing machine-made snow, the Gardnerville, Nev., Record-Courier reported.
The Viking V2 snow guns, which combine cool water with compressed air to produce the frozen precipitation, are expected to reduce the resort’s average annual snowmaking energy use by approximately 378,000 kilowatt hours compared to older model snow guns and were installed on the Nevada side of the mountain located in Douglas County, the Record-Courier reported.
The savings represent enough electricity to power 42 homes in northern Nevada for a year and it represents an annual reduction of 283 tons of carbon emissions, according to NV Energy officials.
The new equipment was installed through NV Energy’s Sure Bet energy efficiency program for new construction, so Heavenly will receive a $29,913 rebate from the program to offset project costs, the Record-Courier reported.
“Heavenly will continue to look at all technologies available to further reduce energy consumption in all of our mountain operations,” said Barrett Burghard, Heavenly’s Senior Snow Surfaces Manager. “This project aligns well with the overarching Vail Resorts future goal of continuing to reduce our energy.”
Heavenly has the largest snowmaking system on the West Coast and one of the largest in the world. Even though the resort receives an average of 360 inches of snowfall annually, snowmaking crews can produce enough machine-made snow to cover 65 percent of the skiable terrain, the Record-Courier reported.
“Vail Resorts has reduced its overall energy use by 10 percent in the last three years, and as part of the Next Ten energy reduction campaign, will be looking to achieve another 10 percent by the year 2020,” said Frank Papandrea, Environmental Manager for Heavenly. “This will be accomplished through capital improvements and upgrades to lifts, snowmaking, facilities and vehicle fleets.”