EGU General Assembly 2020
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Alpine glaciers disappearance tipping point: results from EURO-CORDEX models

Enrico Scoccimarro and Danile Peano
Enrico Scoccimarro and Danile Peano
  • CMCC FOUNDATION, CSP, Lecce, Italy (

The front variations of Alpine glaciers show a general retreat over the past 150 years. This glacier retreat, then, has a large impact on many regional sectors, such as hydroelectricity production, river runoff, and touristic sector. In the last decades, glacier retreat in the Alps has been extremely evident due to the pronounced temperature increase affecting these mountains.

Moreover, numerous model studies exhibit a high probability of occurrence of Alpine glacier disappearance by the end of the current century, especially under extreme future climate change conditions.

The Alpine glaciers disappearance is expected to largely influence the Alpine glaciers regions climate, especially in terms of water availability. For this reason, the occurrence of the Alpine glaciers disappearance is enumerated among the climate tipping point.

Given the reduced average glaciers dimension, high-resolution data are needed to investigate the occurrence and the potential impacts of this tipping point. Thus, the EURO-CORDEX dataset over the EUR-11 domain are analyzed in this study.

Alpine glaciers differ under many characteristics, such as elevation, mean aspect, length, and shape. Consequently, a minimal glacier model, which takes into account few glacier features, is used in detecting the occurrence of the Alpine glaciers disappearance. Besides, a simplified surface mass balance model contributes to generalize the tipping point detection and assess the expected water budget changes.

This effort is part of the EU-funded COACCH project.   




Alpine Glaciers, tipping point, water cycle, EURO-CORDEX

How to cite: Scoccimarro, E. and Peano, D.: Alpine glaciers disappearance tipping point: results from EURO-CORDEX models, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-4927,, 2020


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