Blasting on the glacier: Greenpeace criticizes the Sölden Ski World Cup

Blasting on the glacier: Greenpeace criticizes the Sölden Ski World Cup
“Glacier” construction site: Excavation is currently underway on the World Cup slope on the Rettenbachferner
Image: Screenshot

The World Cup slope on the Rettenbachferner has been a construction site for months. The dredging work at 3,000 meters above sea level has now brought environmentalists into action. Pictures show how excavators are removing parts of the Rettenbachferner so that the Ski World Cup opening can take place at the end of October. Blasting is also said to have been carried out in order to maintain and straighten the width of the World Cup slope. According to Greenpeace, these practices put skiing in a bad light and make any efforts to protect the climate by the FIS (International Ski Federation) appear implausible.

ÖSV man and environmental activist Julian Schütter also joins the criticism. “The races in Sölden were always very cool events. However, we have to find a way to run this sport without destroying its foundations. With this approach, you shouldn’t be surprised if the sport suffers from a bad reputation.”

The Söldener Bergbahnen are angry about the criticism. The webcam page points out that due to the retreat of the glacier, the World Cup slope needs to be renovated. All of the authorities’ requirements were met and the structural measures were officially approved as early as 2021. For Julian Schütter, that’s not enough: “If the FIS were to finally adapt the World Cup season to the actual seasons and circumstances and, for example, postpone the start of the World Cup to the end of November, it would not be necessary to make such counterproductive interventions in order to start the season successfully to start.”

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