The ability of several of Colorados prime ski areas to respond to winter drought is threatened by acidic runoff from abandoned mines, according to researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder and the Northwest Colorado Council of Governments.
Contamination known as acid-rock drainage enters waterways, such as Summit Countys Snake River, that are used for making artificial snow. When the snow melts, the water can run into streams not previously polluted, further spreading the contamination, said the research team.
CU-Boulders Andrew Todd and Diane McKnight of the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research and Lane Wyatt of the Northwest Council of Governments describe how past Colorado mining is adversely affecting tourism, now a $9 billion industry. The paper will be published in the Sept. 23rd issue of Eos, published by the American Geophysical Union.
Andrew Todd | American Geophysical Union
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