Landscape changes and natural hazards following the loss of permafrost, glaciers and snow fields: Challenges for mountain tourism and mountain rescue in Jotunheimen (Naturfare Jotunheimen)
Mountain tourism is growing industry, taking place in an environment with a high prevalence of perennial snow and ice in the form of permafrost, snow fields and glaciers. These areas are particularly vulnerable to consequences of a warming climate, such as landscape changes and geohazards. There are simultaneously changes in mountain tourism, with more traffic and new types of tourists with different preferences and behaviour pattern. This combination can make tourists more exposed to demanding conditions, resulting in heightened risks and new types of mountain rescue assignments. This altogether challenges the mountain tourism system as a whole, including the industry, authorities and the regional rescue preparedness.
The main aim of the project is to develop knowledge on how the mountain tourism system can relate to physical climate risk in Jotunheimen. This include clarifying the scope and localization of possible landscape changes and geo hazards in Jotunheimen, and specify the safety challenges incurred by this for mountain tourism and rescue preparedness. The project has a classic societal security perspective and will employ a transdisciplinary approach to map challenges, develop scenarios and a model for how the mountain tourism system can resist and adapt to these challenges. The project will create a basis for how to deal with the consequences of physical climate risks in Jotunheimen and stimulate to cooperation between different disciplines and institutions to secure safe travel in the mountains.
Project leader is Albert Lunde