State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than feared

State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than feared
The large glacial lake Imja Thso in the Imja Valley south of Mt. Everest/Nepal formed in the 1960s and has grown continuously ever since. The 3-D view was generated from an ASTER satellite image. Credit: T. Bolch, Universität Zürich/TU Dresden

Ever since the false prognoses of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the Himalayan glaciers have been a focus of public and scientific debate. The gaps in our knowledge of glaciers in the Himalayan region have hindered accurate statements and prognoses. An international team of researchers headed by glaciologists from the University of Zurich and with the involvement of scientists from Geneva now outlines the current state of knowledge of glaciers in the Himalayas in a study published in Science. The scientists confirm that the shrinkage scenarios for Himalayan glaciers published in the last IPCC report were exaggerated.

Glacier area 20 percent smaller than assumed

The most up-to-date mappings so far based on revealed that in the Himalayas and Karakoram cover a total area of approximately 40,800 km². While this is around twenty times larger than all glaciers of the European Alps put together, it is as much as twenty percent smaller than was previously assumed. Lead scientist Tobias Bolch, who researches at the University of Zurich and Dresden University of Technology, mainly puts this down to erroneous mappings in earlier studies.

State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than feared
This is an aerial view of the Imja glacier and Lake Imja, Nepal, the Himalayas. The lake appeared in the 1960s and has grown continuously ever since. The sinking of the surface of the debris-covered glacier tongue is also clearly discernible. Credit: J. Kargel, University of Arizona
Less shrinkage than predicted

The scientists took all the existing measurements of length, area and volume changes and mass budgets into account for their study. While some of the measurement series on length changes date back to 1840, measurements of glacier mass budget that instantaneously reflect the climate signal are rare. In addition, continuous measurement series do not stretch back any further than ten years. The researchers recorded average length decreases of 15 to 20 metres and area decreases of 0.1 to 0.6 percent per year in recent decades. Furthermore, the glacier surfaces lowered by around 40 centimetres a year. "The detected length changes and area and volume losses correspond to the global average," explains Bolch, summarizing the new results. "The majority of the are shrinking, but much less rapidly than predicted earlier."

For the regions in the northwestern Himalayas and especially in the Karakoram Range, the researchers noted very heterogeneous behaviour in the glaciers. Many of them are dynamically unstable and prone to rapid advances (so called "surges") that largely occur independently of the climatic conditions. For the last decade on average, even a slight volume increase was detected. Based on their analyses, the researchers assume that glacier shrinkage will not have a major impact on the water drainage of large rivers like the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra in the coming decades.

Greater variability and menacing flooding of glacial lakes

Despite the partial all-clear for the Himalayan glaciers, however, Bolch advises caution: "Due to the expected shrinkage of the glaciers, in the medium term we can expect a greater variability in the seasonal water drainage. Individual valleys could dry up seasonally."

Bolch and his colleagues also see a very serious threat to the local population in newly formed or rapidly growing glacial lakes. The deluge of water and debris from potential outbursts of these lakes could have devastating consequences for low-lying regions. According to the scientists, increased efforts are urgently needed to monitor the lakes as well as changes in the glaciers and the climate in the .


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Glaciers feeding Ganges may melt down

More information: Science. April 20, 2012. doi: 10.1126/science.1215828
Journal information: Science

Provided by University of Zurich
Citation: State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than feared (2012, April 19) retrieved 16 June 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-04-state-himalayan-glaciers-alarming.html
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Apr 19, 2012
Here's a story that will never make it into the New York Times.

Apr 19, 2012
Yep, they found that the glaciers in the Himalayas aren't shrinking as badly as expected, unlike most other glaciers in the world. That local anomaly thoroughly discredits the global warming idea, right?

Xbw
Apr 19, 2012
The problem with most articles related to global warming is, there are plenty emotions on both sides and snap decisions are made on running articles before real research is there to back it up.

Apr 19, 2012
"While some of the measurement series on length changes date back to 1840"

You mean glaciers have been melting for hundreds of years without the help of CO2?


Apr 19, 2012
"While some of the measurement series on length changes date back to 1840"

You mean glaciers have been melting for hundreds of years without the help of CO2?


1750 to 1850 , industrial revolution ? coal burning ?

Apr 19, 2012
"While some of the measurement series on length changes date back to 1840"

You mean glaciers have been melting for hundreds of years without the help of CO2?



Yeah, them 10% efficient coal-fired steam engines during the Industrial Revolution produced no CO2 or soot at all. Nada.

Apr 19, 2012

Yeah, them 10% efficient coal-fired steam engines during the Industrial Revolution produced no CO2 or soot at all. Nada.


How many steam engines were there by 1840?

Apr 19, 2012
"Growing glaciers all over the world here"-Entropy.

The researchers recorded average length decreases of 15 to 20 metres and area decreases of 0.1 to 0.6 percent per year in recent decades. Furthermore, the glacier surfaces lowered by around 40 centimetres a year.


Given those linear rates, the glaciers could totally melt in as little as 167 years.

Since CO2 is still rising, and will increase the excess CO2 above "natural" levels by an additional 33% over the next 20 years, and because of positive albedo feedback due to local loss of albedo, these glaciers could increase their melt rates by more than double, and perhaps 10 times over the next 20 years.

Apr 19, 2012
"The Little Ice Age was a period from about 1550 to 1850 when the world experienced relatively cooler temperatures compared to the present. Subsequently, until about 1940, glaciers around the world retreated as the climate warmed substantially."

Natural warming cycle peaked around 1940.

"Glacial retreat slowed and even reversed temporarily, in many cases, between 1950 and 1980 as a slight global cooling occurred. "

CO2 is so fickle.

Apr 19, 2012
"Writing for Forbes Magazine, climate change alarmist Steve Zwick calls for skeptics of man-made global warming to be tracked, hunted down and have their homes burned to the ground, yet another shocking illustration of how eco-fascism is rife within the environmentalist lobby."
http://www.prison...mes.html
But won't that put more CO2 into the air?

Apr 19, 2012
"Why shut down the IPCC?"
The IPCC is part of the UN. To be representative of it's membership, all it's member states were required to send their top "Climate Scientists" to be part of the IPCC. Countries like Uganda and Somalia don't have any climate scientists but they sent delegates anyway. The agenda of these numerous quasi scientists then became to attain the best results for their home constituencies, ie make a buck for the wealthy minority at home. The best way to do that is to exaggerate everything so we can sue the west for causing this imaginary mess. Throw in the green lobby and the socialist/fascist/population control/fruitcake lobby, add the mass media,and we have a runaway train.

Dug
Apr 19, 2012
Did anyone not pick up on the logical significance of this statement: "The detected length changes and area and volume losses correspond to the global average," explains Bolch, summarizing the new results. "The majority of the Himalayan glaciers are shrinking, but much less rapidly than predicted earlier." Duh, if Him. glaciers equate to the global average and it's really not alarming, then the global average shrinkage isn't that alarming either? Or, if they made this bad an error on the Him. glaciers, has anyone gone checked the assumptions composing the global averages??? In reality climatologist are the same guys, that can't accurately predict this weekends weather on TV.

Apr 19, 2012
And this report from 6 days ago suggests the glaciers are actually growing slightly
http://phys.org/n...ers.html

Apr 20, 2012
"While some of the measurement series on length changes date back to 1840"

You mean glaciers have been melting for hundreds of years without the help of CO2?


1750 to 1850 , industrial revolution ? coal burning ?


Sorry, claiming any anthropogenic influence before 1956 (according to the IPCC) is denying the science. Its kind of obvious that if the tiny amount of CO2 emitted pre-WW2 caused any warming then the massive amount emitted since then must have caused more warming. There has been almost no warming since 1950 (0.7C) and all of that was between 1978-1998. So clearly any warming before 1950 was natural, otherwise the narrative collapses by being ridiculous (ok more ridiculous than it already is).
The AGW argument was mostly mistaking correlation for causation, except there isnt any corellation.

Apr 20, 2012
State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than feared


State of Himalayan glaciers less alarming than hoped. (fixed)

Apr 20, 2012
Its not the glaciers melting or climate change that needs examining as a matter of priority, much more dangerous to human future is this idea. Though, it might just work!

http://www.smh.co...fo6.html

Apr 20, 2012
You funny vendicar with all these idiots.

AndaTard ;)

Apr 20, 2012
Fact from report: "The majority of the Himalayan glaciers are shrinking, but much less rapidly than predicted earlier."

Denialbot response: "All glaciers are growing. All scientists are liars. Global warming is a huge conspiracy."
Cognitive dissonace in action.

Apr 20, 2012
In ten years the only thing climate change beleivers will have to say is "told you so".

Climate has been changing for millions of years. What's new?

Apr 20, 2012
In ten years the only thing climate change beleivers will have to say is "told you so".

Climate has been changing for millions of years. What's new?

new is 200 years of industrialization , with massive burning of fossil fuels with tens of thousands of billions of co2 expelled by industry each year and billions of cars, in addition of those made naturally.
and new is like 7-8 billion humans and they intensive farming and cows who expel methane and massive deforestation and alteration of ecosystems overall, who lower the planets ability to absorb all that pollution.
not to mention not only co2, but all the particles and other pollutants.
yes climate was always changing, but cause of all that, now it change much faster and in an unnatural way.
and i am sick of all the cars who exhaust all those gasses in city, and make an dark cloud of fog over it, and we all have to breath it. its bad for health and it STINKS !

Apr 20, 2012
new is 200 years of industrialization

So?
The MWP was warmer with NO industrialization and fewer people.

Apr 20, 2012
Arctic Sea Ice Above Normal
Antarctic Sea Ice way above normal
Polar Bears just fine
Penguins fine
Cooling for 15 years
Coral fine

Chicken Little's depressed

Apr 20, 2012
Arctic Sea Ice Above Normal
Antarctic Sea Ice way above normal
Polar Bears just fine
Penguins fine
Cooling for 15 years
Coral fine

Chicken Little's depressed


Get some new material.


Why? Demolishing AGW is fun.

Apr 20, 2012
You are nothing more than a mentally ill clown who is ignorant of basic science.


Antarctic Sea Ice way above normal
Polar Bears just fine
Penguins fine
Cooling for 15 years
Coral fine

Chicken Little's depressed

Apr 21, 2012
The much larger question is - do we have any clue on why the Earth's temperature has fluctuated so much before people existed? If we don't know why or when the next Ice Age may occur then worrying about how our CO2 emission may affect it seems rather odd.

As an analogy - we are the ants, sitting on our little mound on the side of a large volcano worring if the heat we generate will trigger the volcano to erupt.

Apr 21, 2012
On the question of whether UN organizations are actually expert in anything - I've been a participant in UN organizations for over thirty years as a committee participant, representative of my country, document editor, committee chair..... The result of the activities I've observed is that the output of these organization tends to be "designed by committee" (never optimal) and is the result of much political, rather than technical, negotiation. There are often a few technical experts present however their input may well be diluted or ignored for political or commercial gain, and many/most participants are far from expert. These organizations and committees are usually self-perpetuating and re-write their own mandate to try to grow their level of power and influence. Their leadership structure is often composed of the more politically motivated rather than technically astute, and tends to seek the politically rather than technically correct solution.

Apr 21, 2012
Antarctic Sea Ice way above normal
Polar Bears just fine
Penguins fine
Cooling for 15 years
Coral fine

Chicken Little's depressed


Hey, idjit, this nice link should simplify the data for you.

http://www.wunder...climate/

Have fun. Everything you said was wrong.

Apr 21, 2012
Antarctic Sea Ice way above normal
Polar Bears just fine
Penguins fine
Cooling for 15 years
Coral fine

Chicken Little's depressed


Shouldn't a normal person be happy the end of the world isn't happening?

Apr 21, 2012
IPCC is a joke. Just like Mann, Jones, Hansen and all the other dishonest, charlatan, clowns...

Apr 22, 2012
Isn't it wonderful when you can just 'adjust' your real world data to make the predictions from your models come true! Here's what they did with the New Zealand data
http://wattsupwit...stments/
They did the same with the US data to eliminate the 1930's dust bowl, also the Australian figures (Darwin and Alice springs) and the Iceland and Greenland figures. Isn't it just wonderful?

Apr 22, 2012
Never mind cooking the planet, I am cooking the satellite data. More platable to my funders and supporters, at any rate.

Apr 22, 2012
GregorTard, why don't you include the fact that the person suing the NewZealand climate study has been revealed as a paid operative ...


Greenpease and the WWF combined are multi-billion dollar business that fund most of the IPCC "scinetists" who fabricated all of the AGW propaganda like the Hockey Stick.

Of course VD hates a free enterprise think tank that spend a few thousand dollars each year commissioning papers that demolish the AGW scam.

Apr 22, 2012
In ten years the only thing climate change beleivers will have to say is "told you so".


I'm still waiting for them to say that.

You see, they used exactly the same words ten years ago, twenty years ago, quarter century ago.

I'm still waiting...


Apr 23, 2012
[
Apparently nothing taking place today, or over the past decade and a half constitutes "evidence" of an Anthropogenic forcing on the climate.


Because the warming from 1909/1910 to 1942/44 was longer and steeper than the warming from 1980 to 1998.

Both ended.

Both were natural.

Apr 23, 2012
From another poster rebutting yet another of your failed arguments.

"From the Reason Foundation a libertarian editorial one of the Koch family foundations"
http://reason.com...ged-exxo

"Seems trooper Parker the generals are retreating"

Yet another skeptic who can't ignore reality the way you choose to.


Predictions of gloom and Doom from 40 years ago were a joke.

http://reason.com...r-update


Apr 23, 2012
NotParker
From the article you just posted
"This means more technology and wealth will be available to cope with any problems that may occur from climate change."

Did you read it yourself ?

Apr 23, 2012

Because the warming from 1909/1910 to 1942/44 was longer and steeper than the warming from 1980 to 1998.

Both ended.

Both were natural.


And 42 and 44 were quite warm globally compared to today.

http://i44.tinypi...jdb8.jpg


Apr 23, 2012
"This means more technology and wealth will be available to cope with any problems that may occur from climate change."


1) "may occur". None have.

2) CLimate always changes

3) Its getting colder.

You do realize that models 40 years ago that predicted doom and gloom were total failures.

Hansen's doom and gloom models about CO2 were also total failures.


Apr 23, 2012
IMO it's worth recall my geothermal theory of global warming accelerated with dark matter neutrinos - the Himalayan glaciers are separated with thicker layer of Earth crust from Earth mantle, so they tend to melt slower. Is this mechanism sufficient or even feasible explanation? Who knows - but at least it doesn't apparently violate the facts observed.

Apr 23, 2012
The AGW hysteria was a classic runaway train. Now even Lovelock is backpedalling
http://worldnews....e-change

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