Die Bodenkultur - Journal for Land Management, Food and Environment

D. Penna, L. Mao, F. Comiti, M. Engel, A. Dell’Agnese and G. Bertoldi:

Hydrological effects of glacier melt and snowmelt in a high-elevation catchment


Over the last decades, the retreat of glaciers as result of global warming has raised issues concerning the water resource management in mountain regions. In this context, it is crucial to understand the effects of glacier and snow meltwater on runoff volumes and on suspended sediment transport in high-elevation catchments. This work presents experimental results derived from the use of turbidity, water stable isotopes and electrical conductivity data collected in an Italian alpine catchment to assess the sources of groundwater and stream water, the role of glacier and snow in groundwater recharge, runoff variability and suspended sediment transport dynamics. Key words: Glacier melt, snowmelt, runoff, isotopes, suspended sediment concentration.