La Jornada – The glaciers in Switzerland have lost 6% of their total volume this year

Geneva. Glaciers in Switzerland have lost 6 percent of their total volume this year due to a dry winter and successive summer heat waves, which have “smashed” melt records, according to a report released yesterday.

The study by the Cryosphere Committee (CC) of the Swiss Academy of Sciences showed the magnitude of glacier loss, which will only get worse in the future.

“This year has been catastrophic for Swiss glaciers: all melting records have been broken,” according to the Coordination Committee, which considered a 2 percent loss in 12 months “extreme.” The report stated that three cubic kilometers of ice had melted.

“The short-term melting cannot be stopped,” said Matthias Haas, head of Switzerland’s Glacier Monitoring Division (GLAMOS), which documents the long-term changes of those thicker masses of ice and snow in the Alps. by DC.

He told AFP that if CO2 emissions were reduced and the climate protected, “a third of the total volume could be saved in Switzerland at best”.

Huss, a glaciologist at the Federal Polytechnic in Zurich who directs the Glamus program, said there was “no chance” that glaciers would return for decades, at best, given current projections of global temperatures.

On the other hand, the country “will have lost everything by the end of the century”.

At the beginning of the year, the snow cover in the Alps was exceptionally light, then a large amount of sand dust from the Sahara desert arrived between March and May and settled on the surface.

Polluted snow is now absorbing more heat and melting faster, depriving glaciers of their protective layer in early European summer.

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The constant heat between May and early September washed away the glacial ice.

By mid-September, the once-thick ice sheet covering the passage between the Scex Rouge and Tsanfleuron glaciers had completely melted, exposing rocks that had been covered in ice since at least Roman times.

At the beginning of July, the collapse of a section of the Marmolada glacier, the largest in the Italian Alps, killed 11 people and highlighted the severity of the situation.

According to a report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, published in February, melting snow and ice is one of the ten threats to climate change.

“The loss was particularly tragic for the small glaciers,” according to the CC.

He noted that the Pizol, Vadret dal Corvatsch and Schwarzbachfirn glaciers “practically disappeared, and the measurements stopped”.

The report stated that in the Engadin and South Valais regions, both in the south, “a layer of ice 4 to 6 meters thick at 3,000 meters above sea level has disappeared.”

Significant losses have also been recorded even at the highest measurement points, such as the Jungfraujoch mountain at an altitude of about 3,500 metres.

Meanwhile, the southern part of the Schneifer glacier in the Bavarian Alps has melted and permanently lost its glacial status, the Bavarian Academy of Sciences said Monday.

The ice is no longer even 2 meters thick in many places, and less than 6 meters in the deepest places, according to ground-penetrating radar measurements taken this month.

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