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Conference "Ardito Desio, geologist, scientist and explorer"

Extreme events of the last year have shown that climate change will continue in its acceleration, causing unsustainable consequences for the structure of 'ecosystem of our planet. The measures taken and proposed by the "international community" have not been sufficient to achieve the objectives set out in the “Paris agreement”. It is necessary to build new actions through a "choral effort" of research studies, scientific and technological skills including all interdisciplinary professional sectors.



The “Climate Emergency” is the "key challenge" for our generation.

On 23 October, the Fogolâr Furlan in Rome held the conference "Ardito Desio, geologist, scientist and explorer", promoted by Eurosolar Italia (Italian Section of the European Association for Renewable Energy), in collaboration with the SIGEA (Italian Society of Environmental Geology), and the "Ardito Desio" Association.

The event, attended by a large audience of young researchers and professionals, was intended to recall the well-known Friulan geologist Ardito Desio (1897 - 2001), retracing his actions through the documents contained in the precious archive collected by his daughter, that will soon find its final location in the Natural History Museum of Udine

Several specialists contributed through their panels. First of all the architect Francesca Sartogo, president of the Italian section of Eurosolar and coordinator of the conference, who emphasized the role of "geology" as a discipline for the knowledge of the territory and its resources, enhancing the contribution of the work by Ardito Desio as an innovative model in today's climate change challenge. The methodology of applied geology represents the main legacy of Ardito Desio. The project of the “Piramide EvK2 CNR” laboratory, a universally recognized permanent high-altitude facility research center for the study of climate, medicine, geophysics and human physiology. This project, 2014 European Solar Prize for the energy excellence of its technologies and respect for the environment, is one of the operational tools that Ardito Desio has left to the new generation of scientists.

Dr. Giuseppe Muscio, geologist and paleontologist, director of the Friulan Museum of Natural History since 2010, extender of numerous research and scientific publications, illustrated the figure of Ardito Desio in the context of his cultural education.

Dr. Mariela Desio, president of the "Ardito Desio" Association, curator of the important reconstruction of the "Memory" of the precious "Ardito Desio Archive"; illustrated the adventurous life of his father, who was entirely devoted to the discovery, knowledge and conservation of nature and the physical structure and geography of a vast area of three different continents: from the Sahara Desert to the glaciers of the Himalayas, from the Karakorum valleys to k2.

Giuseppe Gisotti, honorary president of SIGEA, geologist, forestry, member and teacher of soil science and geography of the environment and landscape; together with the geol. Maurizio Lanzini, president of the Lazio section of SIGEA, professional active in geological and geotechnical preparatory studies to the construction of important infrastructures, have shown the important didactic activity of Ardito Desio, emphasizing the expansion of the research topics and the radical transformation of the discipline towards a technical geology, applied to engineering.

At the end of the conference the geol Paolo Antonio Zambianchi, among the co-founders of the Ardito Desio Association, presented the book "Travel Diaries, 1952 and 1953 in Karakorum India and Pakistan", which represented an opportunity to shed light on prodromes of one of the most important mountaineering and scientific enterprises of the 20th century. The 288 pages book collects original documents and color photographs and holographic diaries from the Desio Archive, and highlights that the success of the Italian expedition to K2 in 1954 was possible thanks to the working methods of the Prof. Ardito Desio, and to his determination to organize an expedition that would have combined the mountaineering part, with a fundamental and solid scientific part of multidisciplinary research, in an area such as the Karakorum, little known at the time and in the middle of repeated conflicts between India and Pakistan.

Without the figure of Ardito Desio, K2 would never have become the “mountain of the Italians”, and that the research activities that still involve several Italian universities (geology, glaciology, environmental sciences, physiology, etc.), probably would not have characterized the area of the Karakorum.

Arch. Francesca Sartogo
President of the Italian section of Eurosolar

Posted in Italy