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Supplements of Geografia Fisica e Dinamica Quaternaria
Volume V - 2001


Proceedings of the 8th Italian Glaciological Meeting


Frontal fluctuations of glaciers and climatic parameters: the case of Maritime Alps – Variazioni frontali dei ghiacciai e parametri climatici: il caso delle Alpi Marittime

Pages 135-144


The frontal oscillation curves of three of the six small glaciers still present in the Maritime Alps have been constructed by means of the data collected since the twenties by the Comitate Glaciologico operators. The frontal oscillation using the raw data of the Cuneo observatory, for which measures are available since 1877. This work is aimed at the definition, also for this alpine sector, of the contribution of the different climatic elements to the movement of glacier fronts, and to evaluate the reaction time of these glaciers to climate inputs. The small Maritime Alps glaciers underwent a dramatic retreat during the last century and are now next to extinction. We intend therefore to highlight the relationship climate inputs and glaciers front oscillations. The statistics tool employed for this purpose consists in the development of simple and multiple linear regressions between the trend of snow mantle thickness, temperatures from May to October and time (independent variables), in function of front oscillations (dependent variable). Some development of the regressions suggested that a response time can be highlighted for thermal forcing, but not for snowfall.

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