Threat to Italian Glaciers Increases


Climate change means an ‘imminent and irreversible disappearance’ of the glaciers in Italy. NEW

Research conducted by the University of Milan, Greenpeace and the Italian Glaciological Committee has projected that by 2060 80% of Italian glaciers will have melted.

Here at PlanetSKI we have already looked at the situation in Austria and Switzerland:

“It’s almost unavoidable that all or most of Italy’s glaciers, like the glaciers in many parts of the world, will disappear for good over the next 40 years,” said retired glaciologist from the University of Milan, Claudio Smiraglia.

“There are things we can and should do to slow the process. But the outlook is bleak.”

Italy currently has about 900 glaciers

The surface area of Marmolada glacier in the Dolomites has dropped to 112 hectares.

It is predicted to shrink even more.

It’s now at half its surface level from 2000.

The measurements come from  the Italian Glaciological Committee, Padua University and Veneto’s ARPAV environmental protection agency.

It is retreating at 90m per year.

Last year 11 people were killed after an ice collapse on the glacier as we reported at the time on PlanetSKI:

Marmolada ice collapse. Image c/o Alpine rescue services.

Marmolada ice collapse. Image c/o Alpine rescue services.

The Forni glacier has reduced by half  since 2015 and has split into three smaller glacier areas.

“The Forni glacier is much less impressive than it once was,” Mr Smiraglia told Xinhua.

“What is left of Italy’s glaciers are small. If a 10 sq km glacier is large by Italian standards, there are fewer than five of them left,” he added.

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