connect, grow & thrive.

Znüni News – Tuesday January 12

Considered one of the best ski races in the world, the Laubenhorn race in Wengen has been officially cancelled just one day afer Bern gave it the go-ahead. The reason? 60 positive covid-19 cases in a population of 1000, many of which are with the British mutated version. The organisers are blaming the British tourists who decided to come for Christmas, and one Brit in particular is being considered a super spreader. Although the financial fallout from cancelling the race will be big, everyone agrees that health comes first. Next week the racers will be meeting in Kitzbühl, Austria, where hopefully they won’t be met with the same problem.

After closing 28 bank branches in 2020, UBS is continuing on its course and closing a further 40 branches in 2021. Blaming the fact that people do most of their banking online nowadays, the bank assures that services will continue in the main branches. Credit Suisse announced that they will be reducing their branches from 146 to 109.

Lucerne has unveiled its ambitious plan to be carbon neutral by 2050, which is the national deadline. Their strategy is to focus mainly on traffic, building and industry where the main progress can be made in the shortest amount of time. More challenging will be reducing the carbon emissions due to animals as the canton has a strong farming culture and from the disposal of rubbish. In 2016 the canton produced 2.3 million tons of CO2 (down from 2.6 million in 2010). There still is a long way to go.

Car sales predictably slumped in 2020 by 25%, however 28% of the new cars which did get bought were either hybrid or electrical (42% in December alone).

Snow, snow, snow! Starting today and lasting until Thursday it will be our turn to get a large dumping of snow. Whether it will make it down to the lake and stay there depends on how warm the temperatures will be but anything above 800 meters can expect to soon be in a winter wonderland, with up to 1 meter of snow forecast for Engelberg.

Charlie Hartmann is the managing director of the Livingin organisation which focuses on helping international residents connect, grow and thrive in Switzerland.