Can Swiss ski resorts survive climate change?

STORY: This normally bustling village in the Swiss Alps has a big problem this winter season: It’s green.

Unusually mild weather across Europe has deprived the resort village of Leysin, Switzerland of its trademark powdery snow.

Recent temperatures climbed as high at 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

It's indicative of a much larger problem:

Switzerland is warming at about twice the global average rate... and with snowless slopes - can resorts survive?

2022 was the warmest year since the country began keeping records in 1864, according to Switzerland’s federal office for meteorology.

The mountains here have a heat-trapping effect, and that's having a major impact on all of the businesses that built their livelihoods around tourism and the slopes.

Armon Cantieni is the director of Tele-Leysin, which operates cable cars and other facilities.

He said there is a decrease in usage of around 35-40 percent compared to last year.

Ski resorts across the country and cable car companies also have been struggling, trying to occupy tourists with other forms of leisure.

Some are luring vacationers with alpine bike paths to compensate for a delayed ski season.

This waiter said he was laid off last week from his restaurant job due to a lack of snow bringing in customers.

He's finding short term gigs to make ends meet, until he can find more steady employment.

Recent Satellite imagery showed ski resorts in Switzerland - and also France and Austria - with significantly less snow compared to this time last year, as record-high winter temperatures swept across parts of Europe over the new year.

It's led to the closure of some of them.

Visitors like Elisa Taylor, a U.S. citizen living in Switzerland, are worried for the businesses that are left.

“I think climate change is really scary, I’m so nervous for the people who make their lives in the winter mountains, you know the livelihoods are very much connected to tourism and if there is no ski, there is probably not as much tourism, there is a lot of interconnected concerns I have. Also, for my skiing.”

Scientists have not yet analyzed how climate change has affected the recent high temperatures...

But they say this winter's warm weather spell fits into the longer-term trend of rising temperatures due to human-caused climate change.