PARIS (Reuters) – Western Europe’s highest peak, Mont Blanc, has lost more than two metres (6.5 ft) in height over the past two years, French researchers said on Thursday.
A team of geographical experts who perform the measurements every two years told a news conference in Chamonix in the French Alps that the mountain was now 4,805.59 metres (15766.37 ft) high, lower than their last measurement of 4,807.81 metres (15773.65 ft) in September 2021.
The experts said it is now up to climatologists, glaciologists and other scientists to look at the data collected and put forward all the theories to explain this phenomenon.
“The measurements are done on a live peak. In view of climate change, monitoring the changes will allow to better understand the impacts,” glaciologist Luc Moreau said.
As alarm grows worldwide over melting glaciers, the official height of Mont Blanc has been on a downward slide for over a decade. The reading was 4,810.90 metres (15,783.79 ft) in 2007.
Switzerland’s glaciers suffered their second worst melt rate this year after record 2022 losses, shrinking their overall volume by 10% over the last two years, monitoring body GLAMOS said earlier this month.
(Reporting by Kate Entringer, Dominique Vidalon, Editing by William Maclean)