Roundup: Swedish Mountain, Glacier Retreat and Glacier Forelands

Hot Weather Melts Sweden’s Highest Peak

From Bloomberg: “This summer’s exceptionally hot weather has seen the south peak of Kebnekaise lose the crown as Sweden’s highest point… The south peak measured 2,097 meters (6,879 feet) above sea level on July 31, down from 2,101 meters on July 2, according to data from the Tarfala research station. The north peak is 2,096.8 meters high, and the research station estimates that it overtook the south peak as Sweden’s highest point on Aug. 1 as the melting has continued.”

Find out more about glacier melting on Sweden’s highest mountain here.

Kebnekaise Mountains on GlacierHub
Kebnekaise Mountains (Source: Swedish Tourist Association).

Melting of Maliy Aktru Glacier Reveals Primary Ecological Succession

In Wiley’s Journal for Ecology and Evolution: “Plants, microorganisms (bacteria and fungi), and soil elements along a chronosequence in the first 600m of the Maliy Aktru glacier’s forefront (Altai Mountains, Russia) were surveyed… Plant succession shows clear signs of changes along the incremental distance from the glacier front. The development of biological communities and the variation in geochemical parameters represent an irrefutable proof that climate change is altering soils that have been long covered by ice.”

Read more about glacier retreat in the Altai Mountains here.

Maliy Aktru glacier’s forefront on glacierhub
Maliy Aktru Glacier’s Forefront (Source: Alexi Rudoy/World Glacier Monitoring Service).

 

Anthropogenic Influence on Primary Succession in Alps

From the 6th Symposium for Research in Protected Areas: “Glacier forelands are ideal ecosystems to study community assembly processes… This study focuses on possible anthropogenic influences on these primary successions. Floristic data of three glacier forelands show that anthropogenic influences in form of (i) grazing sheep and (ii) hiking trails are creating patterns, visible in the floristic community composition and in change of species numbers. (iii) Additionally, it was found that the special protected area ‘Inneres Untersulzbachtal,’ where grazing has been absent for decades didn’t show any of these patterns, underlining the importance of process-protection in glacier forelands, as one of the last truly wild ecosystems in central Europe.”

Discover the anthropogenic influences on primary successions in glacier forelands here.

Alps Glacier Foreland (Source: Brigitta Erschbamer/ Resrach Gate).

Roundup: Glacier Tragedy, Artists, Melting Glacier Candles

Each week, we highlight three stories from the forefront of glacier news. 

Siachen Glacier Tragedy: An Opportunity for Peace?

From National Geographic:

“The death of over a hundred Pakistani soldiers due to an avalanche on April 7 has brought forth the forgotten frozen frontiers of Siachen in the news cycle. This is the world’s highest battlefield where more die of hypothermia than of battle wounds and yet no end is in sight for this senseless conflict. Seven years ago, I wrote an article for India’s Sanctuary Asia magazine on how to quell this conflict using ecological approaches. This was a very practical solution modeled after the Antarctic treaty, which erstwhile adversaries such as the United States and the Soviet Union signed at the height of the Cold War.”

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To learn more about the research, click here.

These Artists Covered A Glacier In A Blanket To Save It

From FASTCOEXIST:

“In a summer or two, climate change might turn the highest mountain peak in Sweden into the second highest. For the past two decades, the 40-meter-thick glacier on top of Kebnekaise mountain has been shrinking, on average, a meter every year.The project is the third in a series of art projects that looks at geoengineering and the human desire to control the climate and weather. As the artists started researching ice, they read about attempts to slow the ice melt on the Rhone glacier in Switzerland by covering it with blankets.”

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To learn more about the research, click here.

These Melting Glacier Candles Have a Point to Make

From CURBED:

“These candles are made in the shape and color of glaciers so when they melt, as candles tend to do, they are making a point. And that point is: the glaciers are melting. A little on the nose? Perhaps, but you have to at least give Icelandic designer Brynjar Sigurðarson a hand for executing a concept in a very straightforward, clearly communicated way. And also for designing some nice looking candles, which are being produced by Spanish brand PCM.Mini glacier candles remind you of global warming as they melt”

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To learn more about the research, click here.