The New Italian Glacier Inventory: a didactic tool for a better knowledge of the natural Alpine environment

Claudio Smiraglia, Roberto Sergio Azzoni, Carlo D'Agata, Davide Maragno, Davide Fugazza, Guglielmina Adele Diolaiuti

Abstract


A glacier inventory is an important instrument to better know the Alpine glacierized environment. After the glacier inventory realized by the Comitato Glaciologico Italiano (CGI, 1959-1962), only regional and local glacier inventories have been developed. In this work, we briefly present the New Italian Glacier Inventory which has been developed by analyzing high resolution color orthophotos acquired in the 2005-2011 time frame. In the New Italian Glacier Inventory 903 glaciers are listed, covering a total area of 369.90 km2. The largest part of the glacier area is located in the Aosta Valley Region (36.15% of the total), followed by the Lombardy Region (23.71%) and by the Province of Bolzano (23.01%). The highest number of glaciers is in Lombardy (230), followed by the Province of Bolzano (212), the Region of Aosta Valley (192), the Province of Trento (115). About 84% of the total glacier inventory is given by glaciers under 0.5 km2 covering only 21% of the total area. Glaciers wider than 1 km2 are about 9.4% of the inventory, but they cover 67.8% of the total area. In the biggest size class (>10 km2) three glaciers are found. Only 25 glaciers (2.8% of the census as a whole) were classified as “valley glacier” and the largest part (57.3%) was classified as “mountain glacier” and “glacieret” (40%), confirming that the Italian glacier resource is distributed into many small ice bodies with only a few large glaciers.

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Sapienza Università di Roma University of Helsinki Università di Torino Western Michigan University

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Edizioni Nuova Cultura

 

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