The Critical Zone is the thin Earth layer between the top of thre tree canopy down to the unweathered rocks (Giardino, 2016).

SUMMITS is an umbrella website for past and present projects on the biogeochemistry of this essential Earth’s layer in specific geographic areas mostly high altitude and high latitude areas. We are calling the Frontier Critical Zones because they are abruptly facing Global Changes.

SUMMITS clusters specific project webpages as well redirects to friend projects and pages.

All rights reserved. CNRS LEFE Toulouse.



Peat is a group of researchers from Toulouse, using peat as an environmental archive.

Trace Metal Legacy on Mountain Aquatic Ecosystems

CRYOconites from the Pyrenees Mountains to the North Pole

REPLIM: a network of Pyrenean lake and peatland (paleo(observatories) funded by Interreg IV POCTEFA
Plasticopyr : strategies to reduce plastic pollution in mountains


CRYO projects updates

Cryo-mountain projet started really this September month with 3 Pyrenees glaciers sampled: Glacier d’Ossoue, Glacier du Taillon and Glacier de la Maladeta. Supraglacial sediments were samples and in some glaciers, real cryoconites were sampled too. They will be analysed for bio, geo analyses to understand their development and the life of this microbiome. CRYO-ARCTIC started …

Voie du Pôle.

The Voie du Pôle was training in Sweden to team and equipment before crossing the North Pole this summer. In collaboration with CRYO scientists, they tested snow sampling. During the Voie du Pôle expedition, the Voie du Pôle scientists will collect cryoconite from sea ice. see this amazing video from our good friend A. Mansat …

Blast from the Past video

Blast from the Past is the project held by Sophia (now in Aarhus Univ.) and colleagues to understand the fate of trace metals such as Hg and Pb in aquatic environments. It is a twin project of TRAM project. See the video: