It wasn’t supposed to be this way. Yes, there were potential issues with making artificial snow out of cleaned-up wastewater. The snow might have abnormally high levels of hormones and other chemicals in it. It might not be exactly safe to eat. It might have been one of those things where you just didn’t think about where it came from. But it was supposed to look like normal snow, at least.
When the Arizona Snowbowl turned on the sewage snow guns, though, “to everyone’s surprise, the snow that blasted onto the mountain was yellow,” The New York Times reports.
Yup, the snow that was made from sewage water looked like someone had peed on it. There’s even a picture of it with the caption “streaks of yellow at Arizona Snowbowl.” The snow has a look familiar to anyone who’s walked down a snowy city street after the dog owners and their pets have been out and about.
We should stress that it’s not that the sewage snow is actually pee snow. It just looks like it. And really, at that point, it doesn’t matter why it’s yellow. The Times:
Regardless, the discolored snow has meant Snowbowl has to contend with a heightened ick factor. Kaelan Monroe, 11, said he went skiing on New Year’s Day and that the conditions were “kind of disgusting.”
If you can’t get an 11-year-old boy on board with something kind of gross, you should probably just give up.
Discolored Slopes Mar Debut of Snow-Making Effort, The New York Times.
Get Grist in your inbox