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Department of Geography

Short break in the warming of the alpine permafrost

For the first time since 2009, the warming trend of alpine permafrost was temporarily interrupted in debris slopes and rock glaciers. This is shown by the latest results of the Swiss permafrost measurement network (PERMOS), in which the Department of Geography is an active partner.


In areas where a thick layer of snow forms every year, the late snowing in the last two years led to a cooling off in winter. This was able to temporarily compensate for the persistently warm conditions on the soil surface. At sites with typically little snow, for example in steep rock faces, however, the warming trend is unbroken.

Press release of the Swiss Academy of Sciences (SCNAT)

Glaciology and Geomorphodynamics Group, Department of Geography, University of Zurich