Roundup: Scientific Tensions, Italian Hydropower, and Threatened Biodiversity

Scientific Tensions Among Early Glacier Researchers

From Isis: “Historians of science have long recognized the field as a socially heterogeneous space wherein different groups jostle for access and to assert the priority of their activities… The essay analyzes a dispute between a mountaineer and a scientist-mountaineer that took place at this time, in which the scientist turned to mountaineering ethics to confront accusations of pseudoscience.”

Learn more about the dispute here.

Juneau Icefield Research Project crew, 1949 (Source: American Geographical Society Library, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Libraries).

 

Hydropower and Glacier Shrinkage in the Italian Alps

From Applied Energy: “We assess the impacts of nine climate-change scenarios on the hydrological regime and on hydropower production of forty-two glacierized basins across the Italian Alps, assumed exemplary of similar systems in other glacierized contexts.”

Read more about hydropower in the Italian Alps here.

Map of the basins considered in this work. Two of the six basins used for the validation of hydrological model do not have hydropower plants and were therefore not included in the main sample of forty-two basins (Source: Applied Energy).

 

Declining Glacier Cover Threatens Biodiversity

From Global Change Biology: “Climate change poses a considerable threat to the biodiversity of high altitude ecosystems worldwide, including cold‐water river systems that are responding rapidly to a shrinking cryosphere… Using new datasets from the European Alps, we show significant responses to declining glacier cover for diatoms, which play a critical functional role as freshwater primary producers.”

Learn more here.

Relationship between catchment glacier cover and both within
-site β-diversity, (a) – (c), and between-site β-diversity, (d) – (f) (Source: Global Change Biology).

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