• On Sunday, in the Italian Alps, part of the Marmolada glacier collapsed after several days of record temperatures.

  • This massive fall resulted in the death of 6 people, and 8 others were injured.

    Several of the missing have not yet been found.

  • A direct consequence of global warming, according to meteorologist Thomas Blanchard, interviewed by

    20 Minutes.

Images as impressive as they are disturbing.

On Sunday, in the Italian Alps, a large part of the Marmolada glacier broke away.

After a temperature record, with 10 ° C observed at the top of the site the previous days, the collapse of the largest glacier in this massif is above all the consequence of global warming, explains meteorologist Thomas Blanchard, whom

20 minutes

interviewed.

A mountain specialist, he says he is worried about the forecasts to come.

Is the collapse that took place on Sunday in the Dolomites National Park, Italy, exceptional, or have such episodes already occurred?

During the summer, it is common to see several glacier falls.

But this time we saw a large mass being swept away.

The event is unfortunately not exceptional given that it is starting to be more and more frequent with global warming.

We often talk about the effects of global warming on the coasts, a little less in the mountains.

Is the risk all the greater?

Indeed, global warming is much more accentuated in the mountains than elsewhere.

Through the models that are drawn for the years to come, we see that we are right in it.

Most glaciers are melting faster and faster.

And the problem is that the ice is the cement of the mountain and helps hold the rocks together.

With the melting of the ice, there is nothing left that holds.

The day before the tragedy, temperatures had reached 10°C at the top, which represents a record.

Is this the main factor of this collapse?

In reality, it is rather the consequence of the weather conditions of recent months.

We experienced a winter with little snow, especially in this region.

Then we went through a very hot spring, with temperature records already broken in May.

And finally, an extremely early heat wave arrived.

The little accumulated snow has therefore melted too quickly, and there is no longer enough snow cover to protect the glacier.

Should we expect similar episodes in the future?

This is an event that can happen again, because the melting of the ice accentuates this type of phenomenon.

In the short term, we are rather worried about this summer, where we risk many heat waves and drought.

We also fear a fairly dangerous winter in the high mountains, both for the glaciers and for the numerous landslides in the rocks.

In the longer term, the projections made by climatologists indicate that the glaciers will suffer more and more.

World

Alps: An accident on the Marmolada glacier leaves at least six dead and eight injured

World

Italy: Searches resume the day after the collapse of a glacier which killed at least six people

One of the ten major threats caused by global warming

According to the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), melting ice is one of the ten major threats caused by global warming.

According to glaciologist Vincent Peyaud, contacted by

20 Minutes

, glaciers could still disappear by the end of the century.

According to the expert, the melting of the ice causes the retreat, even the thinning, of these glaciers.

In particular, this can cause the creation of pockets of water, which represent a threat to the glacier.

"In some areas, we can also observe hanging glaciers, with cliffs of ice that hold their balance and fall bit by bit," adds the CNRS researcher.

If the climatic conditions change, they can become unstable and collapse”.

  • Planet

  • Environment

  • Mountain

  • Global warming

  • Snow

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