Environmental protection in St. Anton am Arlberg

Self-sufficient thanks to Arlberg hydropower

Take a holiday where nature is still undamaged. Breathe clear mountain air and forget the stress of everyday life. In summer wander through a picture book landscape with green alpine pastures, abundant flower meadows and splashing mountain streams. In winter explore the extensive skiing area and allow the majestic background to overwhelm you.

Those who spend their holiday in St Anton am Arlberg, enter a uniquely protected nature. Ecological measures and projects, from alternative power production and consequential waste disposal to exemplary piste care are only a part of the environmental commitment of St Anton am Arlberg.

Chemical-free artificial snow

For many years the mountain lifts company and the St Anton am Arlberg council have developed their reputation as an environmentally friendly ski and holiday destination. "We do everything we can to protect and preserve our heritage" says Director of Tourism, Martin Ebster. It is possible to cover 88 per cent of the pistes in St Anton am Arlberg with snow. This snow, which is blown onto the slopes, is cleaner than natural snow. The crystals consist only of water, which has been processed to drinking water quality, and from air. These strict regulations, stating that no chemicals may be added, apply to the whole of Tyrol. When the melted snow and ice from the artificial snow flows into the brooks and rivers in the spring, it returns to the nature. The river water supports the power production in the valley which is used for next winter's snow production, etc. – a continuous, environmentally-friendly circle.

The Kartell Reservoir – The Arlberg’s own hydropower makes St. Anton self sufficient

An important and unique project in the world of ski resorts is the independent supply of electricity. In 2005 the Kartell energy plant was developed and was put into operation together with the Kartell Lake. This reservoir, which is also a popular excursion destination, holds around eight million cubic meters of water and supplies about 33 million kilowatt hours of electricity annually. The entire production from the Kartell Reservoir is stored by use of the existing Rosanna power plant. Due to this, since 2006, St Anton am Arlberg has been self-sufficient in the supply of electricity.
In addition, St Anton am Arlberg operates a biomass heating system using wood chips and a solar panel arrangement which currently provides heating and warm water for 80 housing units.

Waste separation - clear case

For a long time strict waste separation has been the norm in St Anton am Arlberg. Even the old cooking fat is collected and then, for example, appears as biodiesel for vehicles. It should be no surprise that all St Anton am Arlberg mountain restaurants are distinguished with the Austrian Environmental Seal of Quality. This certification includes standards for waste water disposal, waste separation and also the appropriate application of cleaning products.

Environmental infrastructure

Last but not least is the good accessibility of St Anton am Arlberg to the international railway network, which is an essential contribution to environmental protection. "Those who holiday with us can confidently leave the car at home", says Director of Tourism, Martin Ebster. "The new railway station is centrally located and from here the hotels and other accommodations can be quickly reached". The mountain lifts start from the centre of the village, shops and restaurants are also central and, moreover, regular Wander, Ski and Village buses run throughout the entire holiday region from the local St Anton districts and out to Flirsch, enabling holiday makers to reach their destinations easily. "The reduction of individual traffic and the traffic-free village centre are also an enormous plus in the quality of life", says Martin Ebster. For him, all environment and nature protection measures are an investment in the future. "It is part of our principles that the gift of nature has to be protected and we believe that tomorrow's decisions should consider the future generations"