This study concerns lakes located in glaciated and recently-deglaciated areas of the northwestern alpine chain. They are of considerable significance due to several reasons: they represent important elements for mountain environment, landscape and ecosystem; they are an economic resource for tourism (e.g. Miage Lake, Mount Blanc Massif, Aosta Valley) and for the production of hydroelectric power (e.g. Sabbione Lake, Val Formazza, Northern Piemonte); finally they can play as risk factors for enabling Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (e.g. Effimero Lake, Belvedere Glacier, Mount Rosa Massif). In the Piemonte Region, large amount of information (reports of the yearly glaciological surveys, photos, maps, aerial imagery) are available on glacial lakes, but they are not systematically organized. This work aims to create an inventory of glacial lakes, to make a geographical and multitemporal analysis of the phenomenon and to deepen some case studies for increased knowledge on the relationship between the lake and its respective glacier. Different methods and instruments were used: bibliographic research, database construction, aerial photogrammetry, orthophotos analysis and Geographic Information System (GIS). An inventory of 55 glaciers affected by the presence of one ore more glacial lakes has been derived. Geographycal distribution of glaciers with lakes includes five sectors of western Alps (3 in Maritime Alps, 9 in Cottian Alps, 24 in Graian Alps, 6 in Pennine Alps and 13 in Lepontine Alps). For each glacier a short description is presented, focused on the evolution of related glacial lakes, and supported by photos and references. A morphometric evaluation was performed on: altitudinal distribution of glacial lakes, glaciers exposure, the slope of the areas where lakes are located and lakes size. Data collected allows to deepen the knowledge of glacial environment, to understand spatial and temporal evolution of glacial lakes, but also related phenomena that happens in the cryosphere. This has recently become a need because of the global climate change.
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