The volume of Swiss glaciers has halved since 1931

Although glacier volumes have increased in the short term, when compared between 1931 and 2016, the volume has plummeted during this period.

In fact, the total volume of glaciers has decreased at an unprecedented rate.

While Swiss glaciers lost half their volume over the 85-year period to 2016, the Swiss Glacier Tracking Network (GLAMOS) indicates that in the following 6 years alone, glacier volumes decreased by another 12%.

This is evidence that glacier volumes are decreasing rapidly.

Based on reconstruction and comparison with data from the 2000s, the researchers concluded that glacier volume in Switzerland decreased by 50% between 1931 and 2016.

On August 22, Swiss researchers warned that the volume of glaciers in the country has halved since 1931, after the first reconstruction of the trend of glaciers disappearing in the 20th century.

The study, published in the scientific journal The Cryosphere, using material from the TerrA photo archive, captured about 86 percent of Switzerland’s glacier areas, analyzing about 21,700 photographs taken between 1916 and 1947.

Rapid glacier melting in the Alps and elsewhere due to climate change has been increasingly closely monitored since the early 2000s.