Mont Blanc Glacier Poised to Collapse, Italy Evacuates Area

Mont Blanc_ Experts Warn that Part of Glacier Could Collapse

Radar to monitor Mont Blanc glacier - English

A number of roads have been closed and vacation houses evacuated and there may be now exclusively restricted entry to the city of Courmayeur under the glacier, which is common with vacationers.

To avoid human casualties, authorities in Italy have elected to close certain roads in the Val Ferret municipality and evacuate at-risk mountain huts.

Experts from the Valle d'Aosta regional government and the Fondazione Montagna Sicura (Safe Mountain Foundation) issued the warning of a possible collapse of the Planpincieux glacier on the Grandes Jorasses peak in Mont Blanc. Stefano Miserocchi, mayor of the nearby town of Courmayeur, signed the order following a report this week that showed the glacier was melting at an accelerated rate of 50-60 cm per day.

Below the glacier, he said, "there are no homes, only a few unoccupied chalets".

Mr Miserocchi said: "These phenomena once again show how the mountain is going through a period of major change due to climate factors and, therefore, it is particularly vulnerable".

Italian authorities in the northwest region of Courmayeur, Aosta closed roads and evacuated mountain huts on Wednesday (September 25) after experts warned that part of a glacier on Mont Blanc could collapse.

"This is an alarm before which we can not be indifferent in the illusion that it doesn't regard me, you, that it is something far away in time or in space".




A new special report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said Wednesday that glaciers around the world, outside of Greenland and Antarctica but including Europe, are losing 220 billion metric tons of ice a year.

A examine by Swiss researchers launched earlier this month urged that the Aletsch glacier - the most important within the Alps - may disappear utterly by the tip of the century if nothing is completed to fight local weather change.

Over the last 10 years, Switzerland has lost 15% of its glacier volume, with almost 3% loss in 2017-2018 alone, Huss said.

"We have melting at an elevation of nearly 5,000 meters (16,400 feet) above sea level, which is really changing the system and can support such events as glaciers falling down", he said.

"We hope climate prevention measures are implemented and the warming trend is slowing down", Huss said.

Glaciers in the Alps are fragmenting as a result of global warming.

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