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Marmolada and climate change

The Marmolada stands majestic and lonely in the middle of the Dolomite region, and dominates the other peaks like a queen. There are many characteristics that make it special. It boasts Punta Penìa, the highest peak in the Dolomites (3,343 m.) and the source of the Avisio river (90 km) that courses through the Fassa, Fiemme and Cembra valleys before flowing into the Adige River.

It is a place of stark contrasts. The southern slope, one of the most spectacular and challenging rock walls of the Alps, falls vertically to nearly 1,000 metres. The north side houses the largest glacier in the Dolomites, 200 hectares of 30 million cubic metres of water, trapped in an ice cap that can reach the height of a 15 storey building! However, its front has retreated by 300 metres over the last thirty years, with a pace of 10 metres a year and a rate about 10 times higher than in the previous thirty years. Much faster than anywhere else in the Trentino!

For this reason the shining mantle of the "White Queen" has become a symbol of the fragility of mountain ecosystems to cope with climate change affecting the entire planet, and a reminder of the responsibility of managing this transformation.