In pictures: Documenting melting Alpine glaciers in the Forni Valley
Photographer Luigi Avantaggiato has documented the melting of one of the world’s most studied glaciers high in the Italian Alps.
The mountain ranges of the Lombardy region hold the largest number of glaciers in Italy, many of which are classified as extinct or in danger of extinction.
The Forni valley glacier, in Altal Valtellina, has become of particular interest to tourists and scientists a like. Its size and the beauty of the Forni Valley and the gigantic glacial tongue (a long and narrow sheet of ice) that made it accessible to anyone transformed it into a popular destination for mountaineers and tourists during the early 20th Century.
The unusually high heat of the summer of 2015 radically changed the structure of the glacier. By the end of August 2015 the entire mass had split into three sections. Scientific studies have shown that this rate of change is set to increase over the next two decades.
Photographer Luigi Avantaggiato has been photographing the changing face of one of the world’s most studied glaciers, demonstrating the speed at which climate change is affecting our landscape.
The accumulation area
The structure of a glacier
Documenting the change
The Forni Valley through time
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Crossing the basin
James Cutmore is the picture editor of BBC Science Focus Magazine, researching striking images for the magazine and on the website. He is also has a passion for taking his own photographs