Utah business leaders, officials call for action regarding climate change

Posted at 6:18 PM, Aug 08, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-08 20:19:18-04

SALT LAKE CITY -- “If twenty years from now there's no more snow in the Wasatch, everybody is going to be wishing we did something now,” said Stacy Bare, Director of the Sierra Club Outdoors.

That sentiment is why--to coincide with this week's outdoor retailer convention--local mayors and business leaders came together Friday to show their support for action on climate change.

“I think everyone in the industry is concerned about climate change," said Bob Bonar, general manager of Snowbird Ski and Summer Resort. "I mean obviously it's a big deal right now, we're seeing less snowfall."

Outdoor activities like skiing and river rafting are the cornerstone of Utah’s economy, and local businesses say less snow fall is something Utah can't afford.

“What does that mean for Utah? That means a loss in economy, a loss in tourist’s visits--that means a loss of jobs in the area,” Bare said.

And local leaders and recreational advocates said changes not only need to happen for the Wasatch Front, but also in parts of Utah where companies are drilling next to recreational areas.

“It's noise, and it disrupts the park experience, and there are better ways to bring in money and bring in people and bring in dollars than continue to drill,” Bare said.

While most experts agree climate change is happening, the reasons why continue to be a topic for debate. But for these leaders, they said people can have an impact.

“We all have a stake in this, and I think the one things we can do is make sure we're having honest conversations with one another,” Bare said.