A glacier in the Italian Alps is turning pink as was recently discovered by a scientist at the Institute of Polar Sciences.
While most of us would be fascinated to have a glimpse of it, this pink snow, also known as watermelon snow, could be a sign of huge ecological trouble.
The snow here gets its pink colour from a blooming algae that apparently melts snow.
And although pink snow is common in the Alps during summer, higher frequency of the phenomenon and an increase in the intensity of the pink colour is raising alarms.
In normal situations, snow reflects 80% of the sun’s radiation back into the atmosphere, but as these algae grow, they darken the ice leading to more absorption of heat.
As a result, the snow melts quickly.
Netizens are calling it yet another bad omen in 2020.
Move over black carbon, pink snow can also lead to rapid snow melt. https://t.co/z9GQp6duNa— Randall Gates (@rgatess) July 7, 2020
This is what the #ClimateCrisis looks like in #Europe right now.— David Windt (@DavidLWindt) July 5, 2020
“In a first for #Italy, pink snow is observed on parts of the Presena glacier…caused by algae that develops when snow melts…the algae in turn increases the rate at which the snow melts”https://t.co/wYS6j4U2lf pic.twitter.com/z79btcUo1c
While Di Mauro, the scientist who brought this to light, is still testing the pink snow, he believes it is a snow algae called Chlamydomonas nivalis.
And it’s blooming could be bad news as it leads to the rapid melting of glaciers.