Will the lights go out in the National League this season because of the energy crisis?
Stephan Roth, Nicole Vandenbrouck and Marcel Allemann
The desire for normality is great after three seasons plagued by Covid. But the energy crisis that has shaken Europe in the wake of the Ukraine war threatens to throw a spanner in the works.
“There are so many questions that no one can answer. Will we have a power shortage? If so, when and to what extent? What would then be prioritized?” asks Peter Zahner, CEO of the ZSC Lions. “But of course I’m worried and there is uncertainty as to whether we can finish the season under these circumstances.” HC Lugano is also “concerned about developments”, especially for young people: “A possible closure of the Cornèr Arena would be a disaster.”
SCB President Marc Lüthi, on the other hand, says: “It seems a bit like Corona, there is also a lot of scaremongering.” A colleague who held a management position at an energy giant told him that there had to be a long cold spell with severe minus temperatures in January for Switzerland to become really critical.
Patrick Bloch, the CEO of the ice hockey association, sought contact with Swiss Olympic and his football and skiing colleagues. “It is extremely difficult to assess how justified the concern really is,” he says. “You can’t really imagine that the lights go out and you can’t play anymore. On the other hand, since Covid, we have known that we have to reckon with everything. It would be the third year that amateurs, women and juniors could no longer play. It would be especially bad for the numerous girls and boys who play ice hockey with passion. »
The new ZSC stadium produces a third of the electricity it needs itself?
Not having any electricity at all is the worst-case scenario, “but even if a club can no longer afford the increased prices – for example for ice cream rentals – it will be dependent on the help of the public sector,” he said bloch.
In an energy crisis, is it moral to play ice hockey? Bloch: «I say yes, at least up to a certain point. Sport is of social relevance – the federal government has clearly underlined this with its support during the corona pandemic. »
The SCB has a rental contract with agreed fixed prices until 2029. Biel also has a flat-rate contract. “It’s a little different with stadium catering, where the actual ancillary costs are invoiced,” says CEO Daniel Villard. The Lions have a collective agreement and expect a 3 to 5 percent increase in 2023. Negotiations are underway in Zug. “However, the current offers are very worrying,” says the EVZ.
Modern halls, such as the Swiss Life Arena in Zurich-Altstetten, which will go into operation on October 18, not only consume energy, but also produce electricity thanks to solar energy or waste heat. “We produce a third of our annual electricity needs ourselves. In summer we produce more and feed it in, around 30,000 households are supplied. But in winter we are dependent on being able to obtain electricity,” says Zahner.
He’s hot for this title: Checked out with ZSC striker Willy Riedi(01:08)