Michele Freppaz

Michele Freppaz
Università degli Studi di Torino | UNITO · Department of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences

PhD

About

221
Publications
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Publications

Publications (221)
Presentation
Full-text available
The vast majority of studies in the ecological literature last less than three years, and only a small number of research works capture unusual events. To detect changes in high-mountain ecosystems, long-term research is mandatory, as these areas are important bellwethers of climate change. The LTER macrosite "Northwestern Italian Alps" includes th...
Article
Full-text available
Streams and rivers are becoming increasingly intermittent in Alpine regions due to the global climate change and related increases of local water abstractions, making it fundamental to investigate the occurrence of supraseasonal drying events and their correlated effects. We aimed to investigate leaf litter decomposition, the C:N ratio of the litte...
Article
Full-text available
Snow gliding, a slow movement downhill of snow cover, is complex to forecast and model and yet is extremely important, because it drives snowpack dynamics in the pre-avalanching phase. Despite recent interest in this process and the development of some studies therein, this phenomenon is poorly understood and represents a major point of uncertainty...
Article
Alpine soils can provide valuable paleo-environmental information, representing a powerful tool for paleoclimate reconstruction. However, since Pleistocene glaciations and erosion-related processes erased most of the pre-existing landforms and soils, reconstructing soil and landscape development in high-mountain areas can be a difficult task. In pa...
Chapter
Full-text available
The section of the guidebook of the virtual excurion of the 2021 SPSS meeting includes the main activities performed by the research group in the high-elevation area included in the LTR site "Istituto Angelo Mosso", near Col d'Olen, between Valsesia (VC, Piedmont) and Gressoney valley (Aosta). The main research topics are the characterization of a...
Poster
Full-text available
691 soil profiles were used to produce the first soil map of the whole Aosta Valley Region at the 1:100,000 scale. They have been attributed to 16 Cartographic Units, each representing an ecologically and functionally significant major soil type, spatialized using a Maximum Likelihood Estimation model available in ArcGIS software. Six maps were use...
Chapter
Full-text available
Soils can act as relevant carbon (C) reservoirs and/or sinks, as they can store C for variable times, removing it from the atmosphere, thus contributing to the regulation of climate at the planet scale by reducing GHG emissions. Mountain soils in particular can store high amounts of organic C (soil organic C - SOC). Not only the amount of OC stored...
Poster
Full-text available
In the framework of climate change research, mountain soils provide valuable paleo-environmental information, representing a powerful tool for paleoclimate reconstruction. However, reconstructing soil and landscape evolution in high mountain areas can be a difficult task because Pleistocene glaciations and erosion-related processes erased most of t...
Poster
Full-text available
A long-lasting, thick snow cover and a relatively high humidity and low temperatures characterize snowbed communities, which are thus particularly sensitive to climate change. In a warming climate, changes in precipitation and temperature will likely lead to shorter snow-covered periods. This will modify soil temperatures, water and nutrient fluxes...
Poster
The increasing extension of ski areas is a worldwide trend. The machine-grading of slopes involved during ski run construction changes the physical, chemical and biological properties of the soil, with significant, long term ecological impact on the environment. Establishing and developing plant communities in these areas is crucial to rehabilitate...
Presentation
The popularity of alpine skiing is still increasing in the Alps. Consequently, the demand for bigger ski resorts and for broad and levelled ski slopes is rising, too. The reconstruction of entire slopes has become normality in many regions. As a result, the soil structure is strongly influenced and new vegetation needs to be sown often followed by...
Article
Full-text available
The vertical root distribution (VRD) in the soil remains unknown for most plant species, as studying root systems in different pedo-climatic settings is time-consuming and methodologically challenging. Yet, information on the VRD of different vegetation types is essential to understand better the biogeochemical processes occurring at the soil–plant...
Research Proposal
Full-text available
The PhD candidate will investigate both the influence of climate variability on forest ecosystem functioning (e.g. tree reproduction, mortality) and adaptation to climate change by sustainable forest management practices (e.g. silvicultural systems that prevent or mitigate drought, fire and storm impacts). The research will deepen how climate, dist...
Article
Full-text available
In the summer of 2003 and 2004, characterized by a rapid glacier retreat, a stony surface covered by well-structured organic-rich mineral debris was observed very close to the Indren glacier terminus (Monte Rosa Massif, NW Italy, 3100 m ASL), on an area covered by the glacier tongue till the year before. The origin and type of this organic-rich mat...
Preprint
Full-text available
To gain a better understanding of the global application of soil erosion prediction models, we comprehensively reviewed relevant peer-reviewed research literature on soil-erosion modelling published between 1994 and 2017. We aimed to identify (i) the processes and models most frequently addressed in the literature, (ii) the regions within which mod...
Article
Full-text available
To gain a better understanding of the global application of soil erosion prediction models, we comprehensively reviewed relevant peer-reviewed research literature on soil-erosion modelling published between 1994 and2017. We aimed to identify (i) the processes and models most frequently addressed in the literature, (ii) the regions within which mode...
Article
Full-text available
Soil erosion can present a major threat to agriculture due to loss of soil, nutrients, and organic carbon. Therefore, soil erosion modelling is one of the steps used to plan suitable soil protection measures and detect erosion hotspots. A bibliometric analysis of this topic can reveal research patterns and soil erosion modelling characteristics tha...
Article
Full-text available
We studied the effects of three soil management approaches (permanent grassing, chemical weeding, and buffer strips), and the additional impact of tractor passage on soil erosion in a sloping vineyard located in the inner part of Aosta Valley (N-W Italian Alps). The vineyard rows were equipped with a sediment collection system with channels and bar...
Article
Alpine soils store large quantities of total organic carbon (TOC). Given their high sensitivity to climate change, they may release large amounts of CO 2 in a warming climate scenario. Thus, it is important to know their C stocks in order to estimate its possible release. While C stocks of forest, dwarf shrub and alpine grassland soils are well doc...
Article
Large amounts of dissolved organic matter (DOM) are stored in mountain glaciers. However, few researches have analysed the optical characteristics of DOM in surface waters fed by mountain glaciers and their seasonal variations. In a pond fed by a glacier we observed simultaneous decreases in the dissolved organic carbon, and increases in both absor...
Article
Full-text available
The first soil map of the whole Aosta Valley Region was produced at the 1:100,000 scale. We used 691 soil profiles, attributed to 16 Cartographic (soil) Units, spatialized using a Maximum Likelihood Estimation model available in ArcGIS software. Six maps were used as base layers, representing the most important soil-forming factors: parent material...
Book
Full-text available
I suoli sono una componente fondamentale degli ecosistemi delle Alpi. Rappresentano una risorsa naturale importante soprattutto nella regione alpina, molto fragile e vulnerabile. La gestione sostenibile dell’ambiente nell’arco alpino passa anche attraverso una gestione attenta e sostenibile del suolo, che può contribuire a migliorare i servizi ecos...
Article
Full-text available
The proliferation of ski run construction is a worldwide trend. The machine-grading of slopes involved during ski run construction changes the physical, chemical and biological properties of the soil, having significant long-term ecological impact on the environment. Establishing and developing plant communities in these affected areas is crucial i...
Article
Rock-glacier sediment transfer and ice melting can impact surface waters located downstream. However, there is a lack of knowledge on the influence of rock-glacier dynamics on the geochemical, hydrochemical, and ecological characteristics of adjacent impounded surface waters. In the Col d'Olen area (Long-Term Ecological Research site, NW Italian Al...
Article
Avalanches represent one of the most common natural hazard in the Alps, and their risk mitigation is increasingly demanding for local administrations. The frequency of these events have also been influenced by the land use changes that affected the Alps in the past: from the over-exploitation of the first half of the XX century to the depopulation...
Article
Full-text available
Mid‐ and long‐term monitoring of restoration projects have to be performed, as short‐term evaluations do not give comprehensive information about their outcomes. In this study, we assessed the results of a forest restoration project, implemented in former road builder’s yards. We evaluated the recovery of the soil’s physical and chemical properties...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Systematic bibliometric investigations are useful to evaluate and compare the scientific impact of journal papers, book chapters and conference proceedings. Such studies allow the detection of emerging research topics, the analyses of cooperation networks, and the collection of in-depth insights into a specific research topic. In the presented work...
Technical Report
Full-text available
These guidelines collect the current state of knowledge about good management practices for sustainable soil management that could potentially be applied also in mountain agriculture. The aim is to provide a synthetic, straightforward tool for practitioners, in order to mitigate the potential threats affecting mountain soils, and to promote sustain...
Chapter
Il riscaldamento globale ha impatti enormi sugli ecosistemi alpini. Uno tra gli effetti più evidenti è il ritiro dei ghiacciai, a partire dalla fine della Piccola Età Glaciale (1860 circa), che ha provocato l'esposizione di ampie superfici precedentemen-te coperte dai ghiacciai. Queste superfici sono dei laboratori naturali per la verifica delle te...
Chapter
La fusione e il regresso dei ghiacciai influenzano la quantità e la qualità delle acque alle alte quote. Tuttavia, poche sono le ricerche che hanno indagato tali processi alle altitudini più elevate alpine. Il ghiacciaio di Indren ha subito un forte regresso nell'ultimo secolo, con la conseguente formazione di sistemi idrologici e laghi proglaciali...
Chapter
La litologia del materiale parentale ha impatti molto forti sulle proprietà chimiche e fisiche dei suoli giovani, particolarmente nelle zone proglaciali liberate dai ghiacciai a partire dalla fine della Piccola Età Glaciale. Le morene del Grande Ghiacciaio di Verra forniscono uno dei pochi esempi al mondo di cro-nosequenza di suoli e di successione...
Presentation
Full-text available
Presentazione divulgativa con immagini di suoli belli dalla Valle d'Aosta
Article
Full-text available
Snow gliding and glide-snow avalanches are gaining importance among scientists as global warming might induce conditions favourable to those phenomena. Our aim is to analyse such processes with a particular focus on the potential driving factors associated with the soil conditions. We equipped two experimental test sites in the Aosta Valley region...
Article
Full-text available
In full-scale snow avalanche test sites, structures such as pylons, plates, or dams have been used to measure impact forces and pressures from avalanches. Impact pressures are of extreme importance when dealing with issues such as hazard mapping and the design of buildings exposed to avalanches. In this paper, we present the force measurements reco...
Preprint
Full-text available
Mountain ecosystems are sensitive indicators of climate change. Long-term studies may be extremely useful in assessing the responses of high-elevation ecosystems to climate change and other anthropogenic drivers. Mountain research sites within the LTER (Long-Term Ecosystem Research) network are representative of various types of ecosystems and span...
Article
Mountain glaciers can export large amounts of nitrogen (N) and carbon (C) to downstream aquatic ecosystems. To date, however, the number of studies that analysed concentrations and fluxes of N forms and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) from glaciers in the European Alps and worldwide is limited, given the high complexity of data gathering in harsh hi...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This report provides an overview about existing research and approaches to link soils with ecosystem services with a special focus on the Alps. Links4Soils Project Report
Poster
Full-text available
Calendar 2020 - alpine soil photos, soil ecosysetm services
Article
Full-text available
Mountain regions are vulnerable to climate change but information about the climate sensitivity of seasonally snow-covered, subalpine ecosystems is still lacking. We investigated the impact of climatic conditions and pedogenesis on the C and N cycling along an elevation gradient under a Larch forest in the northwest (NW) Italian Alps. The environme...
Article
Full-text available
Rock glaciers (RG) are assumed to influence the biogeochemistry of downstream ecosystems because of the high ratio of rock:water in those systems, but no studies have considered the effects of a RG inflow on the microbial ecology of sediments in a downstream pond. An alpine RG-pond system, located in the NW Italian Alps has been chosen as a model,...
Article
Zeolitites, rocks with a content of zeolite group minerals greater than 50%, can serve as support for plant nutrients uptake, by enabling the slow release of macro- and micronutrients over time. Zeolitites equally improve soil cation exchange and water holding capacity. We analyzed the effect of zeolitite addition to the soil in forest restoration....
Presentation
Full-text available
La realizzazione di infrastrutture di trasporto è spesso causa di degrado e frammentazione degli ecosistemi direttamente o indirettamente interessati dalla realizzazione dell’opera, con effetti anche sulla qualità del suolo, che viene alterato nelle sue proprietà fisiche e chimiche. Gli interventi di recupero di questi siti, previsti dalla normativ...
Article
Permafrost degradation, rock-glacier thawing, and glacier retreat are influencing surface water quality at high elevations. However, there is a lack of knowledge on the dominant geochemical reactions occurring in different cryospheric conditions and how these reactions change during the ice-free season. In the Col d'Olen area (LTER site, NWItalian...
Article
Full-text available
Snow gliding and glide snow avalanches are gaining importance among scientists as climate change might induce conditions favourable to those phenomena. Our aim is to analyse such processes with a particular focus on the potential driving factors associated to the soil conditions. We equipped two experimental test sites in Aosta Valley Region (NW-It...
Article
Full-text available
In alpine tundra the interannual and seasonal variability of C and N forms in soil and lake water during the short snow-free season could be significant and related to climatic and pedoclimatic variables. The hypothesis that not only the climatic and pedoclimatic parameters recorded during the summer season but also the ones measured during the pre...
Article
Full-text available
A number of studies have reported decreasing trends of acidifying and N deposition inputs to forest areas throughout Europe and the USA in recent decades. There is a need to assess the responses of the ecosystem to declining atmospheric pollution by monitoring the variations of chemical species in the various compartments of the forest ecosystem on...
Article
Full-text available
The present Special Issue entitled “ Italian Long-Term Ecological Research for understanding ecosystem diversity and functioning. Case studies from aquatic, terrestrial and transitional domains” is the first published collection of studies performed at LTER-Italy sites which address the diversity and dynamics of ecosystems in different domains in r...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We made ERT and GPR measurements on a high elevation alpine pond to search for underground inflow/outflow and connnection with a possible nearby permafrost zone.
Presentation
Full-text available
We made ERT and GPR measurements on a high elevation alpine pond to search for underground inflow/outflow and connnection with a possible nearby permafrost zone.
Article
Because of extensive Pleistocenic glaciations, which erased most of the previously existing soils, slope steepness and climatic conditions favoring soil erosion, most soils observed in the Alps (and in other mid-latitude mountain ranges) have developed during the Holocene or Late Glacial period. However, in few sites, particularly in the outermost...
Article
Three hypotheses exist to explain how meteorological variables drive the amount and concentration of solute-enriched water from rock glaciers: (1) Warm periods cause increased subsurface ice melt, which releases solutes; (2) rain periods and the melt of long-lasting snow enhance dilution of rock-glacier outflows; and (3) percolation of rain through...
Poster
Full-text available
In latter years, because of the climate change and the related transition from cold to warm based ice in high elevation glaciers, avalanches due to the collapses of hanging glaciers have raised importance and interest. In this work, we present the case study of Palòn de la Mare, a mountain glacier with a secondary hanging snout, which frequently br...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In latter years, because of the climate change and the related transition from cold to warm based ice in high elevation glaciers, avalanches due to the collapses of hanging glaciers have raised importance and interest. In this work, we present the case study of Palòn de la Mare, a mountain glacier with a secondary hanging snout, which frequently br...
Article
1 Almost all natural terrestrial ecosystems are nutrient limited in terms of growth, and we expect treeline vegetation to be no exception. However, direct constraints of low temperature on tissue formation may superimpose effects of low nutrient availability. 2 We examined growth responses of two tree (Larix decidua and Pinus uncinata) and two dwar...
Article
Mountain ecosystems are sensitive and reliable indicators of climate change. Long-term studies may be extremely useful in assessing the responses of high-elevation ecosystems to climate change and other anthropogenic drivers from a broad ecological perspective. Mountain research sites within the LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) network are repr...