Swiss rock glaciers in the Engadine made a geological heritage site
Switzerland’s very own rock glaciers in the Engadine valley have been named one of the top 100 geological world heritage sites, as chosen by the International Union of Geological Sciences. They are joined on the list by the US’s Grand Canyon and Brazil’s Sugarloaf Mountain.
Swiss geologists happy to have glacier recognised
Geologists in Switzerland are thrilled to have the glacier’s geological significance recognised. "It's a huge joy. The rock glaciers are finally getting international attention. In this way, the topic of permafrost, which is an important characteristic of the Alps, is given even more attention”, glaciologist Felix Keller told Swiss broadcaster SRF.
Switzerland's mountains have been under scrutiny in recent years over concerns about climate change and melting glaciers. In 2022, Switzerland’s weather is on track to be the warmest on record, making many scientists and climate researchers even more concerned about the health of some glaciers.
First 100 Geological Heritage Sites announced in 2022
The first 100 geological heritage sites were announced as the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS) celebrated its 60th anniversary. Other sites named among the first 100 geological heritage sites include volcanoes, paleontological sites, caves, mountains and waterfalls.
The sites were selected by geological experts and were then collated into the 100 IUGS Geological Heritage Sites book. The organisation hoped that by giving the sites special status, it would lead to their preservation and would allow for greater education about the sites.