Anaylsis: WWF’s Living Planet Report 2020

In early September, the WWF produced its 2020 Living Planet Report. Its contents make interesting reading for organisations like the UIAA, and its members associations, involved in mountain-based activities and initiatives. The headline of the communication which accompanied the release of the report read: WWF’s Living Planet Report reveals two-thirds decline in wildlife populations on average since 1970 (For precision, the population sizes of mammals, birds, fish, amphibians and reptiles have seen an average drop of...

COVID-19 AND CLIMBING: CCC ASSESS LATEST TRENDS

The International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation (UIAA) Covid-19 Crisis Consultation (CCC) Taskforce held its fifth online meeting on 23 September. This Taskforce, created in April, offers guidance and leadership on subjects related to climbing and Covid-19. All communications related to the UIAA and Covid-19 can be found on the dedicated Portal. In addition to the meeting summary below, the UIAA also published the following statement regarding climbing and Covid-19. The message encourages climbers to follow advice...

UIAA STATEMENT: RESPECT MEASURES, CONTINUE CLIMBING

On 23 September, the UIAA Covid-19 Crisis Consultation (CCC) Taskforce held its fifth online meeting. The meeting notes are available here. All UIAA activity related to Covid-19 can be consulted through the dedicated Portal. During the 23 September meeting, the CCC Taskforce agreed that the message of caution and optimism shared by the UIAA following its previous meeting, 4 August, remains appropriate. The UIAA encourages climbers to follow guidelines published by competent authorities in their respective countries...

FOCUS ON THE FUTURE: UIAA PROGRESS ON NEW STRATEGY AND COMMISSION PROJECTS

Ahead of next month’s online UIAA General Assembly (GA), the UIAA Management Committee (MC) and Commission Presidents held a virtual session on Saturday 26 September with a focus both on preparing for the GA and the federation’s strategic plans for 2021 and beyond. Following an opening address by UIAA President Frits Vrijlandt, chairing his penultimate MC meeting, UIAA General Secretary Lode Beckers detailed the progress made on the UIAA’s next Strategic Plan (the current SP expires...

UIAA SAFECOM ANSWERS YOUR QUESTIONS.
ROPE TESTING

The UIAA – International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation – regularly receives questions related to safety topics. The UIAA Safety Commission, with support of other UIAA Commissions and experts, recently commenced a series of articles answering common questions with the objective of making them available to the wider climbing community. This month’s question is: Why and what are the ideas behind testing half ropes with 55kg weight? Most climbers are not in that weight class especially with all...

MOUNTAIN WILDERNESS MARKS TWO DECADES OF REMOVING OBSOLETE FACILITIES FROM MOUNTAIN AREAS

Following a recent insight into the progress made by last year’s UIAA Mountain Protection Award winner AlpineLearning Project Weeks from the Swiss Alpine Club (SAC), the spotlight now shines on Mountain Wilderness France, a Grenoble-based project who won the Award in 2016. Since 2001, Mountain Wilderness France has organised no less than 57 ‘actions’ as part of its “Obsolete Facilities” campaign. In total, more than 520 tonnes of obsolete facilities (such as barbed wire, live shells,...

ACCESS WORKING GROUP REFLECTS ON COVID-19 LOCKDOWN MEASURES AND IMPACT ON CLIMBING

“Covid-19 lockdown measures and their impact on our freedom have made many people turn their eyes to the mountains, valleys, paths and rural areas with different attitudes,” explains UIAA Access Working Group President Juan Jesús Ibáñez Martin. “The experiences of the past few months, where in some countries there has been a rise in accidents, present an opportunity for our member federations to analyse certain trends and offer people the necessary guidance and advice, especially...

Ice loss on Africa’s highest peak prompts star climber Will Gadd to reconsider his sport

World-renowned adventurer Will Gadd is having a rethink about his ice-climbing career and carbon footprint after discovering that his planned ascent of Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro was no longer possible due to the extensive shrinking of its glaciers. Gadd's story was published by the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) on 14 September and can be viewed in full here. "This is a powerful example of the type of reflection and re-evaluation of 'mountaineering values' that we...

UIAA VOLUNTEER SERIES: PIERRE HUMBLET

There is possibly nobody currently associated with the UIAA – International Climbing and Mountaineering Federation – who has served as many roles within the organisation over nearly thirty years as a volunteer than Pierre Humblet. As a member of the UIAA Council (Management Committee), Legal Expert, Mountaineering Commission President, Vice President, acting UIAA President and today as President of the UIAA Court. LEGAL BEGINNINGS Pierre Humblet was born in January 1945 during the embers of the Second...

BALLY REINFORCES COMMITMENT TO MOUNTAIN PROTECTION

Bally, sponsor of the UIAA Mountain Protection Award, recently announced the partnership between its Peak Outlook Foundation with National Geographic on a dedicated campaign to raise greater awareness on the issues plaguing the world's mountain environments, including Mount Everest, which prominently features in the magazine's July issue. Find out more. Video courtesy of Bally Since Bally’s founding in 1851, the brand has instilled a strong sense of social responsibility to preserve the stunning mountain environments into which...