Autonomous Province of Bolzano

Bolzano, Italy

Autonomous Province of Bolzano

Bolzano, Italy

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Procter E.,Institute of Mountain Emergency Medicine | Strapazzon G.,Institute of Mountain Emergency Medicine | Strapazzon G.,International Commission for Mountain Emergency Medicine ICAR MEDCOM | Dal Cappello T.,Institute of Mountain Emergency Medicine | And 4 more authors.
Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports | Year: 2014

Backcountry recreationists account for a high percentage of avalanche fatalities, but the total number of recreationists and relative percentage of different recreation types are unknown. The aim of this study was to collect the first comprehensive survey of backcountry skiers and snowshoers in a region in the European Alps to quantify adherence to basic prevention and safety practices. Over a 1-week period in February 2011 in South Tyrol, Italy, 5576 individuals (77.7% skiers, 22.3% snowshoers) in 1927 groups were surveyed. Significantly more skiers than snowshoers could report the avalanche danger level (52.5% vs 28.0% of groups) and carried standard rescue equipment (transceiver, probe, and shovel) (80.6% vs 13.7% of individuals). Complete adherence to minimum advisable practices (i.e., an individual being in a group with one member correctly informed about the danger level and carrying personal standard rescue equipment) was 41.5%, but was significantly higher in skiers (51.1% vs 8.7% snowshoers) and in individuals who were younger, reported more tours per season, traveled in larger groups, and started earlier. A transnational survey over a complete winter season would be required to obtain total participation prevalence, detect regional differences, and assess the influence of prevention and safety practices on relative reduction in mortality. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Simoni S.,Mountain eering S.r.l. | Scherer C.,Obrist and Partner Engineering | Gems B.,University of Innsbruck | And 2 more authors.
Hydrology and Earth System Sciences | Year: 2014

The design of efficient hydrological risk mitigation strategies and their subsequent implementation relies on a careful vulnerability analysis of the elements exposed. Recently, extensive research efforts were undertaken to develop and refine empirical relationships linking the structural vulnerability of buildings to the impact forces of the hazard processes. These empirical vulnerability functions allow estimating the expected direct losses as a result of the hazard scenario based on spatially explicit representation of the process patterns and the elements at risk classified into defined typological categories. However, due to the underlying empiricism of such vulnerability functions, the physics of the damage-generating mechanisms for a well-defined element at risk with its peculiar geometry and structural characteristics remain unveiled, and, as such, the applicability of the empirical approach for planning hazard-proof residential buildings is limited. Therefore, we propose a conceptual assessment scheme to close this gap. This assessment scheme encompasses distinct analytical steps: modelling (a) the process intensity, (b) the impact on the element at risk exposed and (c) the physical response of the building envelope. Furthermore, these results provide the input data for the subsequent damage evaluation and economic damage valuation. This dynamic assessment supports all relevant planning activities with respect to a minimisation of losses, and can be implemented in the operational risk assessment procedure. © Author(s) 2014. CC Attribution 3.0 License.


Cremonese E.,Environmental Protection Agency of Aosta Valley | Gruber S.,University of Zürich | Phillips M.,WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF | Pogliotti P.,Environmental Protection Agency of Aosta Valley | And 14 more authors.
Cryosphere | Year: 2011

The investigation and modelling of permafrost distribution, particularly in areas of discontinuous permafrost, is challenging due to spatial heterogeneity, remoteness of measurement sites and data scarcity. We have designed a strategy for standardizing different local data sets containing evidence of the presence or absence of permafrost into an inventory for the entire European Alps. With this brief communication, we present the structure and contents of this inventory. This collection of permafrost evidence not only highlights existing data and allows new analyses based on larger data sets, but also provides complementary information for an improved interpretation of monitoring results. © Author(s) 2011. CC Attribution 3.0 License.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Mazzorana B.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna | Fuchs S.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Environmental Modelling and Software | Year: 2010

Extreme torrent events in alpine regions have clearly shown a variety of process patterns involving morphological changes due to increased local erosion and deposition phenomena, and clogging of critical flow sections due to woody material accumulations. Simulation models and design procedures currently used in hazard and risk assessment are only partially able to explain these hydrological cause-effect relationships because the selection of appropriate and reliable scenarios still remains unsolved. Here we propose a scenario development technique, based on a system loading level and a system response level. By Formative Scenario Analysis we derived well-defined sets of assumptions about possible system dynamics at selected critical stream configurations that allowed us to reconstruct in a systematic manner the underlying loading mechanisms and the induced system responses. The derived system scenarios are a fundamental prerequisite to assure quality throughout the hazard assessment process and to provide a coherent problem setting for risk assessment. The proposed scenario development technique has proven to be a powerful modelling framework for the necessary qualitative and quantitative knowledge integration, and for coping with the underlying uncertainties, which are considered to be a key element in natural hazards risk assessment. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Mazzorana B.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Comiti F.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Scherer C.,Obrist and Partner Engineering | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Environmental Management | Year: 2012

The characterizing feature of extreme events in steep mountain streams is the multiplicity of possible tipping process patterns such as those involving sudden morphological changes due to intense local erosion, aggradation as well as clogging of critical flow sections due to wood accumulations. Resolving a substantial part of the uncertainties underlying these hydrological cause-effect chains is a major challenge for flood risk management. Our contribution is from a methodological perspective based on an expert-based methodology to unfold natural hazard process scenarios in mountain streams to retrace their probabilistic structure. As a first step we set up a convenient system representation for natural hazard process routing. In this setting, as a second step, we proceed deriving the possible and thus consistent natural hazard process patterns by means of Formative Scenario Analysis. In a last step, hazard assessment is refined by providing, through expert elicitation, the spatial probabilistic structure of individual scenario trajectories. As complement to the theory the applicability of the method is shown through embedded examples. To conclude we discuss the major advantages of the presented methodological approach for hazard assessment compared to traditional approaches, and with respect to the risk governance process. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Levaggi L.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Keiler M.,University of Bern | Fuchs S.,University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Natural Hazards and Earth System Science | Year: 2012

As a consequence of flood impacts, communities inhabiting mountain areas are increasingly affected by considerable damage to infrastructure and property. The design of effective flood risk mitigation strategies and their subsequent implementation is crucial for a sustainable development in mountain areas. The assessment of the dynamic evolution of flood risk is the pillar of any subsequent planning process that is targeted at a reduction of the expected adverse consequences of the hazard impact. Given these premises, firstly, a comprehensive method to derive flood hazard process scenarios for well-defined areas at risk is presented. Secondly, conceptualisations of a static and dynamic flood risk assessment are provided. These are based on formal schemes to compute the risk mitigation performance of devised mitigation strategies within the framework of economic cost-benefit analysis. In this context, techniques suitable to quantify the expected losses induced by the identified flood impacts are provided. © Author(s) 2012. CC Attribution 3.0 License.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Comiti F.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Volcan C.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Scherer C.,Obrist and Partner Engineering
Natural Hazards | Year: 2011

A sound, evidence-based hazard mapping requires the analysis of stochastic processes taking place at critical configurations (e.g., bridges, levees) in order to reliably determine the spatial patterns of flood intensities and probabilities. Here, we discuss an approach aiming to support an enhanced determination of flood hazard patterns by identifying within alluvial fans and river corridors two main types of spatial domains based on the predictability of their dynamics, i.e., stochastic and quasi-deterministic domains. The former represents critical configurations whose dynamic evolution (e.g., clogging by large wood, failure due to breaching) cannot be realistically specified by deterministic models, whereas the latter refers to the part of the system where the flood propagation can be computed with sufficient precision and accuracy by hydrodynamic models. The applicability of the proposed approach is discussed on the basis of a case study in the Autonomous Province of Bolzano (Italy). © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.


Mazzorana B.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Mazzorana B.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Levaggi L.,Sudan University of Science and Technology | Formaggioni O.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Volcan C.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano
Water (Switzerland) | Year: 2012

The impacts of flood events that occurred in autumn 2011 in the Italian regions of Liguria and Tuscany revived the engagement of the public decision-maker to enhance the synergy of flood control and land use planning. In this context, the design of efficient flood risk mitigation strategies and their subsequent implementation critically relies on a careful vulnerability analysis of the fixed and mobile elements exposed to flood hazard. In this paper we develop computation schemes enabling dynamic vulnerability and risk analyses for a broad typological variety of elements at risk. To show their applicability, a series of prime examples are discussed in detail, e.g. a bridge deck impacted by the flood and a car, first displaced and subsequently exposed to collision with fixed objects. We hold the view that it is essential that the derivation of the computational schemes to assess the vulnerability of endangered objects should be based on classical and fluid mechanics. In such a way, we aim to complement from a methodological perspective the existing, mainly empirical, vulnerability and risk assessment approaches and to support the design of effective flood risk mitigation strategies by defusing the main criticalities within the systems prone to flood risk. © 2012 by the authors.


Acosta M.,Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic | Pavelka M.,Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic | Montagnani L.,Autonomous Province of Bolzano | Kutsch W.,Johann Heinrich Von Thunen Institute | And 3 more authors.
Geoderma | Year: 2013

Extensivemeasurements of soil surface (including vegetation cover) CO2 effluxwere carried out on 80 positions at four different forest sites (Sweden, Germany, Czech Republic and Italy) using a closed dynamic chamber technique. The period ofmeasurementwas 4-5 consecutive days per site. Two approacheswere used to analyze the measured data, the Q10 parameter and the Arrhenius relationship. Basic environmental factors such as soil temperature and moisture were measured. All the four investigated sites showed a positive dependence of the soil surface CO2 efflux on soil temperature. The four datasets generally resulted in good agreement (up to 93%) between the approaches and residual analysis showed no significant difference between approaches (less than 8%). The Q10 ranged between 2.0 and 2.3 among the sites. The highest spatial variation of the soil surface CO2 efflux at 10 °C (expressed by the coefficient of variation CV) ranged from 30 to 65% between sites. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.


PubMed | Autonomous Province of Bolzano
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of environmental management | Year: 2011

The characterizing feature of extreme events in steep mountain streams is the multiplicity of possible tipping process patterns such as those involving sudden morphological changes due to intense local erosion, aggradation as well as clogging of critical flow sections due to wood accumulations. Resolving a substantial part of the uncertainties underlying these hydrological cause-effect chains is a major challenge for flood risk management. Our contribution is from a methodological perspective based on an expert-based methodology to unfold natural hazard process scenarios in mountain streams to retrace their probabilistic structure. As a first step we set up a convenient system representation for natural hazard process routing. In this setting, as a second step, we proceed deriving the possible and thus consistent natural hazard process patterns by means of Formative Scenario Analysis. In a last step, hazard assessment is refined by providing, through expert elicitation, the spatial probabilistic structure of individual scenario trajectories. As complement to the theory the applicability of the method is shown through embedded examples. To conclude we discuss the major advantages of the presented methodological approach for hazard assessment compared to traditional approaches, and with respect to the risk governance process.

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