Making snow

The memorandum of understanding for the tourism project has provisions for making artificial snow. But John Sims, managing director of Himalayan Ski Village Pvt Ltd, the promoters of the project, insists that his company is not going to do it because of the high costs involved and public opinion. It is estimated that a snow machine requires 600 litres of water per square metre per season. The water would have to be sourced locally to be economically viable, affecting local availability. In the US and France where this technique is used, it has also been known to affect floral and faunal biodiversity. Given the unique biodiversity of the Himalayas, this would be catastrophic. Of special concern are the 400 varieties of medicinal plants in the region, which would be threatened if the period of snow cover is artificially extended.

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