Climate change and its impact on the Himalayan glaciers – a case study on the Chorabari glacier, Garhwal Himalaya, India (2009)

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Glaciers and small ice caps in temperate environments are sensitive indicators of the change in climate. Mountain glaciers provide a valuable tool for reconstruction of Holocene climate changes. The present work, thus, deals mainly with climatic change and its impact on the Himalayan glaciers based on the dating of lichens, developed on loops of moraines formed due to various stages of advance and retreat of the glacier. Here it has been shown that the date of the largest lichen on the loop of moraine that indicates the position of maximum advance of the glacier is 258 years. It shows the period when the Chorabari glacier started receding from the point of its maximum advancement in this part of the Himalaya. Earlier work in the Dokriani Bamak (glacier) has shown that the period of retreat in the respective part of the Himalaya is around 314 years. Research on various glaciers of the northern and southern hemisphere has shown that most of them started their retreat in the mid-eighteenth century, thereby indicating the end of the Little Ice Age maximum. These results suggest that climatic changes in the world started during early to mid-eighteenth century, though this needs further work for confirmation. There is every possibility that its effect was sensed first in the zone close to the equator by the northfacing Himalayan glaciers such as the Dokrian Bamak
Year: 2009
Language: English
In: Current Science, 96 (5): 703-708 p.

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 Record created 2012-10-10, last modified 2014-03-19