Arizona Ski Resort Pioneers Artificial Snow Made From Human Excrement

Ah, human industry — it warms the climate, resulting in snow-less winters, then ingeniously solves the problem by creating new fake snow made out of shit. The New York Times reports:

This coming ski season, Arizona Snowbowl will become the first ski resort in the world to use 100 percent sewage effluent to make artificial snow.

A federal appeals court ruled [against] a coalition of environmental groups and 13 American Indian tribes, which consider the mountain sacred and view the wastewater snow as a desecration. “It’s a disaster, culturally and environmentally,” said Taylor McKinnon of the Center for Biological Diversity, one of the plaintiffs. He worries about the impact on the alpine tundra and to human health should skiers fall into the treated sewer-water snow and ingest it.

The United States Forest Service says the treated water meets the highest standards and is already used to irrigate golf courses, soccer fields and parks, according to Corbin Newman, a regional forester. “Snow-making has become necessary because of climate change,” he said. It allows for a more consistent ski season, bringing money into neighboring Flagstaff, which contracted to sell Snowbowl the water from its sewage treatment plant.

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  • Rex Vestri

    Sounds like a shitty idea to me

  • Rex Vestri

    Sounds like a shitty idea to me

  • Drewhempel

    It’s not just humanure but the industrial toxins that are the real big issue.  Composting humanure creates micronutrients to grow food.  Toxic Sludge is “good for you!” is the corporate brainwashing that industrial sludge is just humanure.  By the way in traditional Chinese there was no word “shit” with a negative connotation because let’s face it — feces is fertilizer is money — people go around to collect it as a business.

    • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

      the days of feces collection in China
      have been over for at least 100 years
      but once it was quite a lucrative business
      (though there’s bound to be a Mom & Pop shit collection biz somewhere)

      humanure would be a great idea and alternative to petro fertilizers
      if human shit wasn’t contaminated with petrochemical drugs and additives

      and btw: gray water is not sludge and they’re using gray water here

    • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

      the days of feces collection in China
      have been over for at least 100 years
      but once it was quite a lucrative business
      (though there’s bound to be a Mom & Pop shit collection biz somewhere)

      humanure would be a great idea and alternative to petro fertilizers
      if human shit wasn’t contaminated with petrochemical drugs and additives

      and btw: gray water is not sludge and they’re using gray water here

    • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

      the days of feces collection in China
      have been over for at least 100 years
      but once it was quite a lucrative business
      (though there’s bound to be a Mom & Pop shit collection biz somewhere)

      humanure would be a great idea and alternative to petro fertilizers
      if human shit wasn’t contaminated with petrochemical drugs and additives

      and btw: gray water is not sludge and they’re using gray water here

  • alizardx

    “Watch out where the people go, don’t you eat that yellow snow” 
    with apologies to Frank Zappa

    All water you are ever likely to come in contact has been recycled through “natural” processes. The only question that matters here is whether or not there are significant contaminants in the water that’s being used to make snow. That’s a very reasonable question and I can’t think of any reason to take the word of the resort operators for this.

    • TripleDave

      Ladies and gentlemen, the proposed usage of Wastewater treatment effluent will, in no way, endanger the health of any individual. This treated water is discharged into creeks, rivers, and lakes all over the world. It is virtually indistinguishable from “real” snow. The Wastewater treatment processes which are used at plants generally produce water at their discharge which is safe for human consumption minus the chlorine which would prevent future bacterial and viral growth. Relax

      • alizardx

        Not feeling inclined to take your word for it, either. I know how the technology you discuss works. “Safe to drink” means another stage of processing that treated water that gets discharged doesn’t get. I toured a local sewage treatment facility some years ago, and this water was used to water plants. And every faucet carrying this water had a “DON’T DRINK THIS” health warning attached.

        However, if you want to use treated effluent for drinking and bathing in your household, please do.

    • TripleDave

      Ladies and gentlemen, the proposed usage of Wastewater treatment effluent will, in no way, endanger the health of any individual. This treated water is discharged into creeks, rivers, and lakes all over the world. It is virtually indistinguishable from “real” snow. The Wastewater treatment processes which are used at plants generally produce water at their discharge which is safe for human consumption minus the chlorine which would prevent future bacterial and viral growth. Relax

  • Nunzio X

    Marketing has reached a new high (or maybe I should say “low”) when they can spread shit everywhere and call it snow.

  • Erin

    Am I the only one who finds this idea a little more than repulsive.?How is this possible that they can take human excrement,and turn it white?And what happens when someone falls in it-getting it in their mouth?As this will happen! Everyone loves to pick up fresh snow and eat it-let it melt in your mouth.Ah,yummy!!!!
    This is truly disgusting!!

  • Erin

    Am I the only one who finds this idea a little more than repulsive.?How is this possible that they can take human excrement,and turn it white?And what happens when someone falls in it-getting it in their mouth?As this will happen! Everyone loves to pick up fresh snow and eat it-let it melt in your mouth.Ah,yummy!!!!
    This is truly disgusting!!

  • http://buzzcoastin.posterous.com BuzzCoastin

    I always thought skiing was a shitty idea
    and this proves it

  • Resolute

    The Arizona Snowbowl, ” Where the affluent meet the effluent. “

  • Resolute

    The Arizona Snowbowl, ” Where the affluent meet the effluent. “

  • ishmael2009

    I know this sounds awful, but this is exactly the kind of thing we should be doing to conserve resources and recycle. Drinking water already contains a significant amount of “reclaimed” effluent water, so it’s not that big a deal. 

  • ishmael2009

    I know this sounds awful, but this is exactly the kind of thing we should be doing to conserve resources and recycle. Drinking water already contains a significant amount of “reclaimed” effluent water, so it’s not that big a deal.