IGG - Institute of Geosciences and Earth Resources, CNR - National Research Council of Italy, Padova, Italy
ISP - Institute of Polar Sciences, CNR - National Research Council of Italy, Padova, Italy and Department of Electrical Engineering, Persian Gulf University, Bushehr, Iran
Abstract. The behaviour of the valley glaciers of the Italian Alps as a result of the climate changes expected for the 21st century has been investigated. From 1980 to 2017 the average length reductions of these glaciers has been 16 % and their average areal reduction around 22 %, much smaller than the overall glacier retreat of the Alps. Their mean observed shortening was about 500 m for a temperature increase of 1.4 °C. To quantify the valley glacier life expectancy, a model estimating their length variations from the air temperature variations of the EuroCordex climatological projections of six different models under RCP4.5 and RCP8.5 scenarios has been used. The ensemble mean temperatures in the Italian Alps region under these scenarios indicate increases of temperature of ~2 °C and ~4 °C from 2018 to 2100 respectively. In both scenarios, the glacier model projections show a constant retreat until the eighties, weakening towards the end of the century. As expected, it resulted more severe under the RCP8.5 (from 22 % to 48 %) than under the RCP4.5 (from 10 % to 25 %) scenario, with a mean length shortening of 35 % and 13 % respectively by 2100. The model used estimates that the majority of the valley glaciers could better resist the climate change.
How to cite. Serandrei-Barbero, R., Donnici, S., and Zecchetto, S.: Effects of climate change on the valley glaciers of the Italian Alps, The Cryosphere Discuss. [preprint], https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-2021-241, 2021.
Received: 02 Aug 2021 – Discussion started: 24 Aug 2021
The annual measurements carried out at the glacier fronts in recent decades indicate that Italian valley glaciers are less sensitive to global warming than the generality of alpine glaciers. This study investigates their length variations in the last 45 years and their projected behavior as a result of the climate changes. The model used indicates that the majority of the valley glaciers could better resist the climate change, unlike most alpine glaciers.
The annual measurements carried out at the glacier fronts in recent decades indicate that...