NH Ski Resort Reduces Energy Consumption by 30% With Efficiency Improvements

by | Oct 4, 2017

Cannon Mountain Ski Area in New Hampshire announced it has installed energy efficiency upgrades expected to help reduce energy consumption at the ski area by 30%, while significantly increasing snowmaking capabilities for less cost.

The ski resort recently completed a $5.1 million energy efficiency upgrade in partnership with Ameresco, an energy efficiency and renewable energy company.

“The completion of this project is a significant achievement in support of the state’s commitment to reduce its energy consumption 50% by 2030,” said Commissioner Jeffrey Rose of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources, which oversees operation of Cannon Mountain. “No matter how you look at it, this project is a win-win. It helps us achieve our overall efficiency and sustainability goals while reducing energy consumption and energy costs, and provides critical upgrades to important ski area infrastructure.”

The largest of the energy conservation measures was to replace 388 existing energy intensive land based air/water snow guns with tower mounted low-energy snow guns, and some portables. The new tower guns greatly reduced compressed air energy as well as the labor required to move the old land guns around the mountain. Twelve-hundred feet of water/air lines were also added, as well as a new pump house located at 3,170 feet, to expand Cannon Mountains snow making ability at higher elevations.

The project’s conservation measures also included replacement of Cannon’s main-trunk power line with a new and more efficient primary power supply line and high- and low-voltage transformer to help increase power reliability and energy efficiency. In addition, upgrades were performed to enhance lighting and weatherization. These provide significant energy savings and improve operational efficiency on the mountain.

The project was funded through the state’s energy performance contract, and is budget-neutral, with savings from the reduction in energy to be used to pay-off the bond within 16 years. Annual energy cost savings are expected to be approximately $386,000.

Other ski resorts across the nation have taken on energy efficient measures as well. In March, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) announced that three Empire State-owned ski resorts – Belleayre Ski Resort, Gore Mountain, and Whiteface Mountain – have pledged to be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2030.

The resorts have joined The Climate Reality Project, “I Am Pro Snow – 100% Committed” to help stop climate change and dump “dirty fossil fuels.” Founded by Nobel Laureate and former US Vice President Al Gore, The Climate Reality Project is dedicated to mobilizing action on the climate crisis.

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