How the Jungfrau Ski Region is leading the way in sustainable mountain transport

Mountain railway uses its own braking power to generate new electricity Trains and cable network powered by its very own hydroelectric power station The Grindelwald wood-fired heating plant generates CO2-neutral thermal energy by burning forest chips, sawmill residue and waste wood from the region With advanced 3-S technology, the Eiger Express cable car only needs seven supports and forest based pylons not required New terminal building, multi-storey car park, mountain station and Eiger Railway Station all blend into the natural landscape Since 1912, the first trains to transport visitors to the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe, the highest railway station in Europe at 3,454 metres, have been driven by local power, generated by the Lütschental Power Station after construction in the early 1900’s.
 
Today, the railway and cable car network is still powered by a mixture of hydroelectricity and from Grindelwald’s own wood-fired heating plant that generates C02-neutral thermal energy by burning forest chips, sawmill residue and waste wood from the region.
 
During the summer months, melting snow and ice is collected and creates excess energy that is sold back to the grid. The toilets take water from the glacier below – the waste water is the piped down to a water treatment plant in the valley.
 
The new V-Cableway Eiger Express cable that was fully completed last season and will be fully operational this winter as skiers return to the slopes from beyond the Swiss borders, is connected to this local, sustainable, power source. With the latest 3-S technology that allows cableways to run with less structural supports, there was no need to destroy parts of the forest area during construction of the project.
 
Grindelwald has a new terminal building that houses the starting point for the two cable car journeys – one to the ski area of Männlichen and the other to the Eiger North Face. The roof of the building has been laid with grass, helping to preserve rare plants and animals.
 
Remo Käser from the Jungfrau Ski Region, said: “For a long time we have considered using the power from our natural resources to become more efficient in the Jungfrau Ski Region and now it’s more important than ever to harness the opportunities we have to become even more sustainable. We are lucky to be blessed with so many natural resources here in the Jungfrau region, surrounded by some of the world’s most famous mountains such as the Eiger, Mönch and Jungfrau. But we are always thinking about how we can reduce our carbon footprint further and create our own energy that is recycled and reused – this is a major factor in the construction of the new Eiger Express lift that has transformed the access to the ski area and the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe experience”.
 
More about the V-Cableway construction is available here: jungfrau.ch/business-report-2019/en_our-operations.html
 

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