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The WSL Magazine DIAGONAL

Twice a year (every June and November) our free magazine, DIAGONAL, reports in English, French and German on WSL's latest research findings and on its work. Besides providing specific information on our core research topics, each edition of the magazine focuses on a given topic.

DIAGONAL No. 2/16

A future without nuclear power and less greenhouse gases: the energy transition promises a more sustainable future. But can Switzerland meet its needs with alternative energy sources? And will their development bring about unwanted side-effects for both man and nature? WSL’s Energy Change Impact research program sets out to answer these questions.

DIAGONAL online

Diagonal 16/2 Cover en

DIAGONAL No. 1/16

February 2015: SLF researchers trigger three avalanches in Vallée de la Sionne (canton of Valais) as part of a large-scale experiment. A pylon equipped with sensors placed in the middle of the test site provides important data for studying the speed, pressure and range of avalanches. In addition to this site, WSL operates other unique test sites where researchers study debris flows, rockfall and sediment transport in streams and rivers under natural conditions. There are also major long-term experiments under­way in forests in order to better understand processes in nature and adapt management methods accordingly.

DIAGONAL online

Diagonal_16_1_en

DIAGONAL No. 2/15

What do you think of when you hear the word soil? Do you smell the moist, slightly musty soil of the forest? Do you feel the dried earth in your hands from your gardening? Do you multiply land prices by square meters in your head?
From an environmental perspec­tive, soil is the foundation of life. It has been formed over thousands of years from bedrock through the interaction of climate and organisms, primarily countless fungi, bacteria and plants. It holds back rainwater, stores nutrients, is the habitat for thousands of creatures and serves as a carbon sink. However, if new hous­ing and roads are built, if pollutants penetrate into the ground, or if heavy machinery damages the soil, it loses the ability to perform these functions in the ecosystem. It takes decades or even centuries for damaged soil to become fertile again – in terms of human life, soil as a natural resource is not renewable.

DIAGONAL online

Diagonal 2/14 E

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