Sample records for holocene glacier variations

  1. Holocene glacier variations and sea level change in Wahlenbergfjorden, Nordaustlandet, Svalbard (United States)

    Schomacker, A.; Farnsworth, W. R.; Ingolfsson, O.; Allaart, L.; Håkansson, L.; Retelle, M.


    Here we present preliminary results on the Holocene glacier variations in Wahlenbergfjorden on Nordaustlandet, Svalbard. The reconstructions are based on lake sediment records from Lake Kl\\overbladvatna covering the last 9500 years. This lake captures meltwater from the Etonbreen glacier, a main outlet of the Austfonna ice cap, when the glacier extends further than present. Additionally, Kl\\overbladvatna is an isolation basin capturing the postglacial isolation from the marine to lacustrine environment due to glacioisostatic rebound. The chronology is based on radiocarbon dating of terrestrial and marine macrofossils. The lake sediment record also reveals that glacial meltwater exceeded the threshold into Lake Kl\\overbladvatna during the Little Ice Age as witnessed by glacial meltwater clay in the upper part of the sediment cores. In periods of less advanced glaciers, the lake sediment record is dominated by laminated clayey gyttja. Based on radiocarbon datings of driftwood, whalebone, and marine mollusc shells in raised beaches and marine deposits in Pallanderbukta, south Wahlenbergfjorden, we also present a new postglacial sea level curve from this region.

  2. Proglacial lake sediments – a basis for uninterrupted chronicles of the Holocene glacier variations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Y. Alexandrin


    Full Text Available The article covers the origin of paleolimnological method in glaciology, concerns the theoretical background of the approach, and focuses on the principal methods of analysis of the lake sediments and creating the sedimentary age-depth models. Lake sediments can provide a basis for creating uninterrupted reconstructions of the Holocene glacier variations with high resolution. The fundament of paleolimnological method is based on the differences between glacial and non-glacial components of the bottom sediments of proglacial lakes. The glacial signal in the lake sediments was originally distinguished by measuring the organic content of the sediment (normally with loss-on-ignition and the magnetic properties of the sediment. Subsequent methods of analysis could yield more precision and normally include geochemical composition (with the use of high-resolution scanning x-ray fluorescence analysis, use of biogenic indicators (such as pollen and diatoms contained in the sediment and more. Obtaining the most accurate age of the sediment is a crucial question in subsequent application of the sediment parameters for reconstruction of glacier variability. The article covers various methods of dating the lake sediment – radiocarbon, Cs- and Pb-isotope dating, varve counting. Techniques of creating age-depth models are taken into account. A state-of-the-art application of sedimentary properties in paleoglaciology yields a reconstruction of a former equilibrium line altitude – ELA. The article focuses on the basis of the ELA reconstruction approach. Successful examples of reconstructions of glacier variations based on the lake sediments can be found throughout the majority of the glaciated regions of the planet. The article states the most prominent of them and gives an update on the current progress in paleolimnological research in the Caucasus Mountains.

  3. Holocene record of glacier variability from lake sediments reveals tripartite climate history for Svalbard (United States)

    van der Bilt, Willem; Bakke, Jostein; Vasskog, Kristian; D`Andrea, William; Bradley, Raymond; Olafsdottir, Sædis


    The Arctic is responding sensitively to ongoing global climate change, warming and moistening faster than any other region on the planet. Holocene proxy paleoclimate time series are increasingly used to put this amplified response in perspective by understanding Arctic climate processes beyond the instrumental period. Glaciers rapidly respond to climate shifts as demonstrated by their current demise around the world. This response has a composite climate signature, marked by shifts in hydroclimate (winter precipitation) as well as (summer) temperature. Attendant changes in glacier size are recorded by variations in glacigenic rock flour that may be deposited in downstream lakes. Here, we present a Holocene reconstruction of glacier activity, based on sediments from Hajeren, a glacier-fed lake on northwest Spitsbergen in the High Arctic Svalbard archipelago. Owing to undisturbed sediments and robust age control, we could resolve variability on a sub-centennial scale. To ensure the accurate detection of glacier activity, we applied a toolbox of physical, magnetic and geochemical proxies in conjunction with multivariate statistics. Our findings indicate a three-stage Holocene climate history for Svalbard, driving by melt water pulses, episodic Atlantic cooling and a decline in orbitally driven summer insolation. Correspondence between inferred advances, including a Holocene glacier maximum around 9.5 ka BP, suggests forcing by the melting LIS during the Early Holocene. Following a late Holocene Thermal Maximum around 7.4 ka BP, glaciers disappeared from the catchment. Glaciers reformed around 4.2 ka BP during the regional onset of the Neoglacial, supporting previous findings. This transition did, however, not mark the onset of persistent glacier activity in the catchment, but a series of centennial-scale cycles of growth and decay, including events around 3.3 and 1.1 ka BP. As orbitally driven insolation declined towards the present, the glaciation threshold

  4. Reconstruction of glacier variability from lake sediments reveals dynamic Holocene climate in Svalbard (United States)

    van der Bilt, Willem G. M.; Bakke, Jostein; Vasskog, Kristian; D'Andrea, William J.; Bradley, Raymond S.; Ólafsdóttir, Sædis


    The Arctic is warming faster than anywhere else on Earth. Holocene proxy time-series are increasingly used to put this amplified response in perspective by understanding Arctic climate processes beyond the instrumental period. However, available datasets are scarce, unevenly distributed and often of coarse resolution. Glaciers are sensitive recorders of climate shifts and variations in rock-flour production transfer this signal to the lacustrine sediment archives of downstream lakes. Here, we present the first full Holocene record of continuous glacier variability on Svalbard from glacier-fed Lake Hajeren. This reconstruction is based on an undisturbed lake sediment core that covers the entire Holocene and resolves variability on centennial scales owing to 26 dating points. A toolbox of physical, geochemical (XRF) and magnetic proxies in combination with multivariate statistics has allowed us to fingerprint glacier activity in addition to other processes affecting the sediment record. Evidence from variations in sediment density, validated by changes in Ti concentrations, reveal glaciers remained present in the catchment following deglaciation prior to 11,300 cal BP, culminating in a Holocene maximum between 9.6 and 9.5 ka cal BP. Correspondence with freshwater pulses from Hudson Strait suggests that Early Holocene glacier advances were driven by the melting Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS). We find that glaciers disappeared from the catchment between 7.4 and 6.7 ka cal BP, following a late Hypsithermal. Glacier reformation around 4250 cal BP marks the onset of the Neoglacial, supporting previous findings. Between 3380 and 3230 cal BP, we find evidence for a previously unreported centennial-scale glacier advance. Both events are concurrent with well-documented episodes of North Atlantic cooling. We argue that this brief forcing created suitable conditions for glaciers to reform in the catchment against a background of gradual orbital cooling. These findings highlight the

  5. Holocene glacier and climate variations in Vestfirðir, Iceland, from the modeling of Drangajökull ice cap (United States)

    Anderson, Leif S.; Flowers, Gwenn E.; Jarosch, Alexander H.; Aðalgeirsdóttir, Guðfinna Th; Geirsdóttir, Áslaug; Miller, Gifford H.; Harning, David J.; Thorsteinsson, Thorsteinn; Magnússon, Eyjólfur; Pálsson, Finnur


    Drangajökull is a maritime ice cap located in northwest (Vestfirðir) Iceland. Drangajökull's evolution is therefore closely linked to atmospheric and ocean variability. In order to better constrain the Holocene climate and glacier history of Vestfirðir we model the past evolution of Drangajökull ice cap. Simulations from 10 ka to present are forced by general circulation model output, ice-core-based temperature reconstructions, and sea-surface temperature reconstructions. Based on these 10-thousand year simulations, Drangajökull did not persist through the Holocene. We estimate that air temperatures were 2.5-3.0 °C higher during the Holocene Thermal Maximum than the local 1960-1990 average. Simulations support Drangajökull's late Holocene inception between 2 and 1 ka, though intermittent ice likely occupied cirques as early as 2.6 ka. Drangajökull is primarily a Little Ice Age ice cap: it expanded between 1300 and 1750 CE, with the most rapid growth occurring between 1600 and 1750 CE. The maximum Holocene extent of Drangajökull occurred between 1700 and 1925 CE, despite the lowest late Holocene temperatures, occurring between 1650 and 1720 CE. Between 1700 and 1925 CE temperatures were likely 0.6-0.8 °C lower than the 1950-2015 reference temperature. The modern equilibrium line altitude (ELA) is bracketed by topographic thresholds: a 1 °C temperature increase from the modern ELA would eliminate the ice cap's accumulation area, while a reduction of 0.5 °C would lead to the rapid expansion of the ice cap across Vestfirðir. The proximity of Drangajökull to topographic thresholds may explain its late inception and rapid expansion during the Little Ice Age.

  6. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene Glacier Fluctuations in southernmost Patagonia (United States)

    Menounos, B.; Maurer, M.; Clague, J. J.; osborn, G.; Ponce, F.; Davis, P. T.; Rabassa, J.; Coronato, A.; Marr, R.


    Summer insolation has been proposed to explain long-term glacier fluctuations during the Holocene. If correct, the record of glacier fluctuations at high latitudes in the Southern Hemisphere should differ from that in the Northern Hemisphere. Testing this insolation hypothesis has been hampered by dating uncertainties of many Holocene glacier chronologies from Patagonia. We report on our ongoing research aimed at developing a regional glacier chronology at the southern end of the Andes north and west of Ushuaia, Argentina. We have found evidence for an advance of cirque glaciers at the end of the Pleistocene; one or locally two closely spaced moraines extend up to 2 km beyond Little Ice Age moraines. Radiocarbon dating of terrestrial macrofossils recovered from basal sediments behind two of these moraines yielded ages of 10,320 ± 25 and 10,330 ± 30 14C yr BP. These moraines may record glacier advances coeval with the Antarctic Cold Reversal; surface exposure dating of these moraines is currently in progress to test this hypothesis. We find no evidence of Holocene moraines older than 6800 14C yr BP, based on the distribution of Hudson tephra of that age. At some sites, there is evidence for an early Neoglacial advance of glaciers slightly beyond (Peru. We have documented multiple wood mats with stumps in growth position separated by till units in a 100 m section of the northeast lateral moraine at Stoppani Glacier (54.78 S, 68.98 W), 50 km west of Ushuaia. Ten radiocarbon ages on these wood mats range in age from 3510 ± 15 to 135 ± 15 14C yr BP. The mats decrease in age up-section; many overlap with published age ranges for Neoglacial advances in western Canada. Taken together, these data: a) do not support the summer insolation hypothesis for Holocene glacier fluctuations in southernmost Patagonia; b) confirm paleobotanical evidence for a warm, dry early Holocene; and c) suggest that many Neoglacial advances in southernmost Patagonia and western North America

  7. Lacustrine Records of Holocene Mountain Glacier Fluctuations from Western Greenland (United States)

    Schweinsberg, A.; Briner, J. P.; Bennike, O.


    Recent studies have focused on documenting fluctuations of the Greenland Ice Sheet margin throughout the Holocene but few data exist that constrain past changes of local glaciers independent of the ice sheet. Our research combines proglacial lake sediment analysis with cosmogenic 10Be dating of Holocene moraines and radiocarbon dating of ice-cap-killed vegetation with an overall objective to use this multi-proxy approach to generate a detailed record of the coupled climate-glacier system through the Holocene. Here, we present lacustrine records of mountain glacier variability from continuous pro-glacial lake sediment sequences recovered from two glaciated catchments in northeastern Nuussuaq, western Greenland. We use radiocarbon-dated sediments from Sikuiui and Pauiaivik lakes to reconstruct the timing of advance and retreat of local glaciers. Sediments were characterized with magnetic susceptibility (MS), gamma density, Itrax XRF and visible reflectance spectroscopy at 0.2 cm intervals and sediment organic matter at 0.5 cm intervals. Basal radiocarbon ages provide minimum-age constraints on deglaciation from Sikuiui and Pauiaivik lakes of ~9.6 and 8.7 ka, respectively. Organic-rich gyttja from deglaciation until ~5.0 ka in Pauiaivik Lake suggests minimal glacial extent there while slightly elevated MS values from ~9.0 - 7.0 ka in Sikuiui Lake may reflect early Holocene glacial advances. Minerogenic sediment input gradually increases starting at ~5.0 ka in Pauiaivik Lake, which we interpret as the onset of Neoglaciation in the catchment. Furthermore, a distinct episode of enhanced glacial activity from ~4.0 - 2.2 ka in Sikuiui Lake may be correlative to a period of persistent snowline lowering evidenced by radiocarbon dates of ice-killed vegetation from nearby ice cap margins. Results from these lacustrine records and our ice-killed vegetation dataset suggest a middle Holocene onset of Neoglaciation ~5.0 - 4.0 ka in this region. We are supplementing these records

  8. Southwest Greenland's Alpine Glacier History: Recent Glacier Change in the Context of the Holocene Geologic Record (United States)

    Larocca, L. J.; Axford, Y.; Lasher, G. E.; Lee, C. W.


    Due to anthropogenic climate change, the Arctic region is currently undergoing major transformation, and is expected to continue warming much faster than the global average. To put recent and future changes into context, a longer-term understanding of this region's past response to natural climate variability is needed. Given their sensitivity to modest climate change, small alpine glaciers and ice caps on Greenland's coastal margin (beyond the Greenland Ice Sheet) represent ideal features to record climate variability through the Holocene. Here we investigate the Holocene history of a small ( 160 square km) ice cap and adjacent alpine glaciers, located in southwest Greenland approximately 50 km south of Nuuk. We employ measurements on sediment cores from a glacier-fed lake in combination with geospatial analysis of satellite images spanning the past several decades. Sedimentary indicators of sediment source and thus glacial activity, including organic matter abundance, inferred chlorophyll-a content, sediment major element abundances, grain size, and magnetic susceptibility are presented from cores collected from a distal glacier-fed lake (informally referred to here as Per's Lake) in the summer of 2015. These parameters reflect changes in the amount and character of inorganic detrital input into the lake, which may be linked to the size of the upstream glaciers and ice cap and allow us to reconstruct their status through the Holocene. Additionally, we present a complementary record of recent changes in Equilibrium Line Altitude (ELA) for the upstream alpine glaciers. Modern ELAs are inferred using the accumulation area ratio (AAR) method in ArcGIS via Landsat and Worldview-2 satellite imagery, along with elevation data obtained from digital elevation models (DEMs). Paleo-ELAs are inferred from the positions of moraines and trim lines marking the glaciers' most recent expanded state, which we attribute to the Little Ice Age (LIA). This approach will allow us to

  9. Late Holocene spatio-temporal variability of the south Greenland Ice Sheet and adjacent mountain glaciers (United States)

    Sinclair, G.; Carlson, A. E.; Rood, D. H.; Axford, Y.


    The late Holocene, with its spatially complex pattern of centennial-scale climate variation, is an ideal time period to test the response of the cryosphere to atmospheric and oceanic temperature changes. The south Greenland Ice Sheet (sGrIS), with its proximity to areas of North Atlantic Deep Water formation and a large spectrum of glaciological regimes over a relatively small area, provides an excellent location to examine the spatial heterogeneity of ice-sheet and glacier responses to climate change. Here, we will present 50 Be-10 surface exposure ages from eight moraines in six locations around the margin of the sGrIS. These moraines are located just outboard of historical moraines, and will therefore allow us to constrain the timing of the most extensive prehistoric late-Holocene advance and retreat of ice margins draining the sGrIS and independent valley glaciers. The dataset includes both marine- and land-terminating glaciers draining the sGrIS, the low-altitude Qassimiut lobe, the high-altitude alpine Julianhåb ice cap and isolated valley glaciers. This diverse dataset will allow us to determine to what extent late-Holocene centennial-scale behavior of the ice-sheet and glacier margins were synchronous, perhaps in response to an external climate forcing, or more stochastic, governed instead by local factors such as basal thermal regime, bedrock topography, or microclimates. This has implications for understanding the forcings and responses of cryospheric changes at timescales relevant to human society. In addition to providing context for paleoclimatic and glacial geologic investigations, this work will inform future sea-level projections by providing targets for validating high-resolution ice-sheet and glacier models.

  10. Holocene and latest Pleistocene climate and glacier fluctuations in Iceland (United States)

    Geirsdóttir, Áslaug; Miller, Gifford H.; Axford, Yarrow; Ólafsdóttir, Sædís


    Multiproxy climate records from Iceland document complex changes in terrestrial climate and glacier fluctuations through the Holocene, revealing some coherent patterns of change as well as significant spatial variability. Most studies on the Last Glacial Maximum and subsequent deglaciation reveal a dynamic Iceland Ice Sheet (IIS) that responded abruptly to changes in ocean currents and sea level. The IIS broke up catastrophically around 15 ka as the Polar Front migrated northward and sea level rose. Indications of regional advance or halt of the glaciers are seen in late Alleröd/early Younger Dryas time and again in PreBoreal time. Due to the apparent rise of relative sea level in Iceland during this time, most sites contain evidence for fluctuating, tidewater glacier termini occupying paleo fjords and bays. The time between the end of the Younger Dryas and the Preboreal was characterized by repeated jökulhlaups that eroded glacial deposits. By 10.3 ka, the main ice sheet was in rapid retreat across the highlands of Iceland. The Holocene thermal maximum (HTM) was reached after 8 ka with land temperatures estimated to be 3 °C higher than the 1961-1990 reference, and net precipitation similar to modern. Such temperatures imply largely ice-free conditions across Iceland in the early to mid-Holocene. Several marine and lacustrine sediment climate proxies record substantial summer temperature depression between 8.5 and 8 ka, but no moraines have been detected from that time. Termination of the HTM and onset of Neoglacial cooling took place sometime after 6 ka with increased glacier activity between 4.5 and 4.0 ka, intensifying between 3.0 and 2.5 ka. Although a distinct warming during the Medieval Warm Period is not dramatically apparent in Icelandic records, the interval from ca AD 0 to 1200 is commonly characterized by relative stability with slow rates of change. The literature most commonly describes Little Ice Age moraines (ca AD 1250-1900) as representing the

  11. Rapid Late Holocene glacier fluctuations reconstructed from South Georgia lake sediments using novel analytical and numerical techniques (United States)

    van der Bilt, Willem; Bakke, Jostein; Werner, Johannes; Paasche, Øyvind; Rosqvist, Gunhild


    The collapse of ice shelves, rapidly retreating glaciers and a dramatic recent temperature increase show that Southern Ocean climate is rapidly shifting. Also, instrumental and modelling data demonstrate transient interactions between oceanic and atmospheric forcings as well as climatic teleconnections with lower-latitude regions. Yet beyond the instrumental period, a lack of proxy climate timeseries impedes our understanding of Southern Ocean climate. Also, available records often lack the resolution and chronological control required to resolve rapid climate shifts like those observed at present. Alpine glaciers are found on most Southern Ocean islands and quickly respond to shifts in climate through changes in mass balance. Attendant changes in glacier size drive variations in the production of rock flour, the suspended product of glacial erosion. This climate response may be captured by downstream distal glacier-fed lakes, continuously recording glacier history. Sediment records from such lakes are considered prime sources for paleoclimate reconstructions. Here, we present the first reconstruction of Late Holocene glacier variability from the island of South Georgia. Using a toolbox of advanced physical, geochemical (XRF) and magnetic proxies, in combination with state-of-the-art numerical techniques, we fingerprinted a glacier signal from glacier-fed lake sediments. This lacustrine sediment signal was subsequently calibrated against mapped glacier extent with the help of geomorphological moraine evidence and remote sensing techniques. The outlined approach enabled us to robustly resolve variations of a complex glacier at sub-centennial timescales, while constraining the sedimentological imprint of other geomorphic catchment processes. From a paleoclimate perspective, our reconstruction reveals a dynamic Late Holocene climate, modulated by long-term shifts in regional circulation patterns. We also find evidence for rapid medieval glacier retreat as well as a

  12. Holocene glacier variability: three case studies using an intermediate-complexity climate model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weber, S.L.; Oerlemans, J.


    Synthetic glacier length records are generated for the Holocene epoch using a process-based glacier model coupled to the intermediate-complexity climate model ECBilt. The glacier model consists of a massbalance component and an ice-flow component. The climate model is forced by the insolation change

  13. Developing a visual moraine classification scheme to support investigations into the Holocene glacier chronology of the Southern Alps, New Zealand (United States)

    Kaufung, Eva; Winkler, Stefan


    The Southern Alps of New Zealand have provided one of only a few suitable study sites for investigating Holocene glacier chronologies in the mid-latitudinal Southern Hemisphere. Although a considerable number of studies have been conducted during the past few decades, these generally focus on a very limited number of glacier forelands. Additionally, those glaciers studied have often been selected because of their accessibility rather than their representativeness for the whole region. A common drawback of many regional studies is the lack of attention to glacial geomorphology and the mode of moraine formation with the dating of such landforms in chronological context. With the Southern Alps characterized by very dynamic geomorphological process-systems and a high seismic activity, this seems unfortunate as it causes a relatively high potential "geomorphological uncertainty" with any published glacier chronology and its subsequent palaeoclimatological interpretation. Future investigations into the Holocene glacier chronology in the Southern Alps need to address those existing shortcomings and, consequently, should achieve a representative spatial distribution of study sites in order to overcome the current strong data bias towards few, albeit relatively well-studied glacier forelands. The specific regional geomorphological environment of the Southern Alps requires, furthermore, a thorough assessment of any moraine selected for the subsequent dating in consideration of its "reliability" if it is considered as evidence of specific former glacier variations. With more than 3000 potential glacier forelands in the entire mountain range, careful selection of future targets for successful chronological field work is essential. We present the preliminary results of an ongoing, time-efficient study to apply different remote sensing sources (aerial photography, Google Earth, satellite images) to evaluate the potential of certain glacier forelands for detailed ground

  14. Lake sediment-based Late Holocene glacier reconstruction reveals medieval retreat and two-phase Little Ice Age on subantarctic South Georgia (United States)

    van der Bilt, W. G. M.; Bakke, J.; Werner, J.; Paasche, O.; Rosqvist, G. N.; Vatle, S. S.


    Southern Ocean climate is rapidly changing. Yet beyond the instrumental period (± 100 years), our comprehension of climate variability in the region is restricted by a lack of high-resolution paleoclimate records. Alpine glaciers, ubiquitous on Southern Ocean islands, may provide such data as they rapidly respond to climate shifts, recording attendant changes in extent by variations in glacial erosion. Rock flour, the fine-grained fraction of this process, is suspended in meltwater streams and transfers this signal to the sediments of downstream lakes, continuously recording glacier history. Here, we use this relationship and present the first reconstruction of the Late Holocene (1250 cal. yr BP - present) glacier history of the Southern Ocean island of South Georgia, using sediments from the glacier-fed Middle Hamberg lake. Variations are resolved on multi-centennial scales due to robust chronological control. To fingerprint a glacial erosion signal, we employed a set of routinely used physical, geochemical and magnetic parameters. Using Titanium counts, validated against changes in sediment density and grain size distribution, we continuously reconstruct glacier variations over the past millennium. Refining local moraine evidence and supporting evidence from other Southern Hemisphere sites, this study shows a progressive diminishing of consecutive Late Holocene advances. These include a two-stage Little Ice Age, in agreement with other Southern Hemisphere glacier evidence. The presented record furthermore captures an unreported retreat phase behind present limits around 500 cal. yr BP.

  15. Rapid Holocene thinning of outlet glaciers followed by readvance in the western Ross Embayment, Antarctica (United States)

    Jones, R. S.; Whitmore, R.; Mackintosh, A.; Norton, K. P.; Eaves, S.; Stutz, J.


    Investigating Antarctic deglaciation following the LGM provides an opportunity to better understand patterns, mechanisms and drivers of ice sheet retreat. In the Ross Sea sector, geomorphic features preserved on the seafloor indicate that streaming East Antarctic outlet glaciers once extended >100 km offshore of South Victoria Land prior to back-stepping towards their modern configurations. In order to adequately interpret the style and causes of this retreat, the timing and magnitude of corresponding ice thickness change is required. We present new constraints on ice surface lowering from Mawson Glacier, an outlet of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet that flows into the western Ross Sea. Surface-exposure (10Be) ages from samples collected in elevation transects above the modern ice surface reveal that rapid thinning occurred at 5-8 ka, broadly coeval with new ages of grounding-line retreat at 6 ka and rapid thinning recorded at nearby Mackay Glacier at 7 ka. Our data also show that a moraine formed near to the modern ice margin of Mawson Glacier at 0.8 ka, which, together with historical observations, indicates that glaciers in this region readvanced during the last thousand years. We argue that 1) the accelerated thinning of outlet glaciers was driven by local grounding-line retreat through overdeepened basins during the early-mid Holocene, and 2) the glaciers subsequently readvanced, possibly linked to late Holocene sea-ice expansion, before retreating to their current positions. Our work demonstrates that these outlet glaciers were closely coupled to environmental and topography-induced perturbations near their termini throughout the Holocene.

  16. Dendrochronology and late Holocene history of Bering piedmont glacier, Alaska (United States)

    Wiles, G.C.; Post, A.; Muller, E.H.; Molnia, B.F.


    Fluctuations of the piedmont lobe of Bering Glacier and its sublobe Steller Glacier over the past two millennia are reconstructed using 34 radiocarbon dates and tree-ring data from 16 sites across the glaciers' forelands. The general sequence of glacial activity is consistent with well-dated fluctuations of tidewater and land-terminating glaciers elsewhere along the Gulf of Alaska. Extensive forested areas along 25 km of the Bering ice margin were inundated by glacio-lacustrine and glacio-fluvial sediments during a probable ice advance shortly before 500 cal yr A.D. Regrowth of forests followed the retreating ice as early as the 7th century A.D., with frequent interruptions of tree growth due to outwash aggradation. Forests overrun by ice and buried in outwash indicate readvance about 1080 cal yr A.D. Retreat followed, with ice-free conditions maintained along the distal portions of the forefield until the early 17th century after which the ice advanced to within a few kilometers of its outer Neoglacial moraine. Ice reached this position after the mid-17th century and prior to 200 yr ago. Since the early 20th century, glacial retreat has been punctuated by periodic surges. The record from forests overrun by the nonsurging Steller Lobe shows that this western ice margin was advancing by 1250 A.D., reaching near its outer moraine after 1420 cal yr A.D. Since the late 19th century, the lobe has dominantly retreated.

  17. Timing and paleoclimatic significance of Holocene glacier fluctuations in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (United States)

    Licciardi, J. M.; Taggart, J. R.; Schaefer, J. M.; Lund, D. C.


    Past fluctuations in climatically sensitive tropical glaciers provide important insight into regional paleoclimatic trends and forcings, but well-dated chronologies are scarce, particularly during the Holocene. We have established precise cosmogenic 10Be surface exposure ages of moraine sequences in the Cordillera Vilcabamba (13°20’S latitude), located in the outer tropics of southern Peru. Results indicate the dominance of two major glacial culminations and associated climatic shifts in the Vilcabamba, including an early Holocene glacial interval and a somewhat less extensive glaciation late in the ‘Little Ice Age’ (LIA) period. Lichenometric measurements on the youngest moraines support the 10Be ages, but uncertainties in the lichen ages arise from the lack of a local lichen growth curve. The Peruvian glacier chronologies differ from a recently-developed New Zealand record but are broadly correlative with well-dated glacial records in Europe, suggesting climate linkages between the tropics and the North Atlantic region. For the latest Holocene, our leading hypothesis is that climate forcings involving southward migration of the Atlantic Intertropical Convergence Zone can explain concurrent glaciations in tropical South America and northern high latitudes, but the influence of other climate drivers such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation may have also played a role. Estimated differences between equilibrium-line altitudes (ELAs) on modern glaciers and those inferred for expanded latest Holocene glaciers reveal an ELA rise of 165-200 m since the LIA, suggesting that temperatures 1.1-1.3°C cooler than present could have sustained glaciers at their LIA maximum positions if temperature was the only control, and thus providing an upper bound on temperature depression during the LIA. However, further work is required to constrain the likely role of precipitation changes. These new Peruvian glacier chronologies and ELA reconstructions complement ice core and

  18. Holocene glacier fluctuations inferred from lacustrine sediment, Emerald Lake, Kenai Peninsula, Alaska (United States)

    LaBrecque, Taylor S.; Kaufman, Darrell S.


    Physical and biological characteristics of lacustrine sediment from Emerald Lake were used to reconstruct the Holocene glacier history of Grewingk Glacier, southern Alaska. Emerald Lake is an ice-marginal threshold lake, receiving glaciofluvial sediment when Grewingk Glacier overtops the topographic divide that separates it from the lake. Sub-bottom acoustical profiles were used to locate core sites to maximize both the length and resolution of the sedimentary sequence recovered in the 4-m-long cores. The age model for the composite sequence is based on 13 14C ages and a 210Pb profile. A sharp transition from the basal inorganic mud to organic-rich mud at 11.4 ± 0.2 ka marks the initial retreat of Grewingk Glacier below the divide of Emerald Lake. The overlaying organic-rich mud is interrupted by stony mud that records a re-advance between 10.7 ± 0.2 and 9.8 ± 0.2 ka. The glacier did not spill meltwater into the lake again until the Little Ice Age, consistent with previously documented Little Ice Ages advances on the Kenai Peninsula. The retreat of Grewingk Glacier at 11.4 ka took place as temperature increased following the Younger Dryas, and the subsequent re-advance corresponds with a climate reversal beginning around 11 ka across southern Alaska.

  19. Modeling sensitivity study of the possible impact of snow and glaciers developing over Tibetan Plateau on Holocene African-Asian summer monsoon climate

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Jin


    Full Text Available The impacts of various scenarios of a gradual snow and glaciers developing over the Tibetan Plateau on climate change in Afro-Asian monsoon region and other regions during the Holocene (9 kyr BP–0 kyr BP are studied by using the Earth system model of intermediate complexity, CLIMBER-2. The simulations show that the imposed snow and glaciers over the Tibetan Plateau in the mid-Holocene induce global summer temperature decreases over most of Eurasia but in the Southern Asia temperature response is opposite. With the imposed snow and glaciers, summer precipitation decreases strongly in North Africa and South Asia as well as northeastern China, while it increases in Southeast Asia and the Mediterranean. For the whole period of Holocene (9 kyr BP–0 kyr BP, the response of vegetation cover to the imposed snow and glaciers cover over the Tibetan Plateau is not synchronous in South Asia and in North Africa, showing an earlier and a more rapid decrease in vegetation cover in North Africa from 9 kyr BP to 6 kyr BP while it has only minor influence on that in South Asia until 5 kyr BP. The precipitation decreases rapidly in North Africa and South Asia while it decreases slowly or unchanged during 6 kyr BP to 0 kyr BP with imposed snow and glacier cover over the Tibetan Plateau. The different scenarios of snow and glacier developing over the Tibetan Plateau would result in differences in variation of temperature, precipitation and vegetation cover in North Africa, South Asia and Southeast Asia. The model results suggest that the development of snow and ice cover over Tibetan Plateau represents an additional important climate feedback, which amplify orbital forcing and produces a significant synergy with the positive vegetation feedback.

  20. Late Holocene and modern glacier changes in the marginal zone of Sólheimajökull, South Iceland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schomacker, Anders; Benediktsson, Ívar Örn; Ingólfsson, Ólafur


    The forefield of the Sólheimajökull outlet glacier, South Iceland, has a variety of glacial landforms and sediments that are products of late Holocene and modern glacier oscillations. Several sets of moraine ridges reflect past ice front positions and river-cut sedimentary sections provide inform...... the last 50 years. The glacier margin thickened 70-100 m from 1960 to 1996 and then thinned 120-150 m between 1996 and 2010. In 2010, the glacier snout was 20-40 m thinner than in 1960. Additionally, the DEM time-series detect areas of erosion and deposition in the forefield....

  1. Salt Marshes as Monitors of Late Holocene Outlet Glacier Retreat (United States)

    Wake, L. M.; Woodroffe, S.; Long, A. J.; Milne, G. A.


    New proxy sea-level records extracted from salt marshes in the vicinity of Jakobshavn Isbrae (Pakitsoq; 69.51°N, 50.74°W) and at previous sites in central western Greenland (Sisimiut; 66.47°N, 53.61°W and Aasiaat; 68.69°N, 52.88°W) are analyzed with respect to their ability to act as proximal tide gauges detecting mass balance changes in nearby outlet glaciers associated with the transition from the Little Ice Age ("LIA", 1400-1850AD) to the Industrial Period (>1850AD). Data at Pakitsoq demonstrate that sea-level rose at a rate of 3.5 ±1.7 mm/yr prior to 1850AD and slowed to 0.3 ±0.6mm/yr thereafter, producing a slowdown in sea level of 3.2 ± 1.8 mm/yr. A similar slowdown, occurring at 1600AD, is observed at Aasiaat and Sisimiut. We interpret these observed changes using a glacial isostatic adjustment model of sea-level change truncated at degree and order 4096, with an aim to determine if the sea-level data can be used to place constraints on changes in Jakobshavn Isbrae and/or Kangiata Nunaata Sermia (Nuuk fjord) during this period. Modelled sea level at Pakitsoq is insensitive to the location of thickening (thinning) associated with grounding line advance (retreat) and the rate of advance and retreat but is sensitive to the change point in time between periods of growth associated with LIA expansion (sea level rise) and the onset of 19th century recession (sea level fall) of Jakobshavn Isbrae. We conclude that the change in sea-level rate observed at Pakitsoq circa 1850AD marks the onset of post LIA retreat of this outlet glacier. Conversely, the modelled sea-level response to the retreat of Kangiata Nunaata Sermia from its LIA maximum at ca. 1761AD is below the detection threshold of the salt marsh record at Sisimiut.

  2. Rapid Holocene glacier fluctuations in arctic Norway in concert with the strength and spatial pattern of the westerlies (United States)

    Bakke, J.; Dahl, S.


    Alpine glaciers are often located in remote regions of the world, areas that only rarely are covered by instrumental records or biological proxy data. Reconstructions of glaciers have therefore proven useful for understanding past climate dynamics on both shorter and longer time-scales. Because of selective preservation of moraine ridges, such records do not exclude the possibility of multiple Holocene glacier advances. This problem is true regardless whether cosmogenic isotopes or lichenometry have been used to date the moraines, or based on radiocarbon dating of mega-fossils buried in till or underneath the moraines themselves. To overcome this problem Karlén (1976) initially suggested that glacial erosion and the associated production of rock-flour deposited in downstream distal glacier-fed lakes could provide continuous records of glacial fluctuations, hence overcoming the problem of selective moraine preservation. In recent years, new collaborative research efforts have developed the methods used to reconstruct past glacier activity based on sediments deposited in distal glacier-fed lakes. Records of glacier fluctuations as preserved in lake sediments now includes the application of various methods such as measuring the amount of minerogenic versus biologic matter (typically inferred from Loss-on-ignition (LOI)), grain size analysis (GSA), magnetic properties (MP), geochemical elements (GE), Rare-Earth Elements (REE), Bulk Sediment Density (BSD), but also other techniques such as XRF analyses. Several glaciers along the coast of Arctic Norway have been reconstructed based on multi-proxy approaches. Here we present data on Holocene glacier fluctuations from three geographical areas; the ice cap Folgefonna, the Okstindan glacier massif and from a small alpine glacier in Lyngen. In Scandinavia, the overall pattern of glacier growth and the onset of the Neoglacial previously have been attributed to the gradual weakening of summer insolation at high northern

  3. Holocene Glacier Fluctuations in the Peruvian Andes Indicate Northern Climate Linkages (United States)

    Licciardi, Joseph M.; Schaefer, Joerg M.; Taggart, Jean R.; Lund, David C.


    The role of the tropics in triggering, transmitting, and amplifying interhemispheric climate signals remains a key debate in paleoclimatology. Tropical glacier fluctuations provide important insight on regional paleoclimatic trends and forcings, but robust chronologies are scarce. Here, we report precise moraine ages from the Cordillera Vilcabamba (13°20‧S) of southern Peru that indicate prominent glacial events and associated climatic shifts in the outer tropics during the early Holocene and late in the “Little Ice Age” period. Our glacier chronologies differ from the New Zealand record but are broadly correlative with well-dated glacial records in Europe, suggesting climate linkages between the tropics and the North Atlantic region.

  4. Characterising Late-Holocene glacier variability in the southern tropical Andes (United States)

    Bromley, G.; Winckler, G.; Hall, B. L.; Schaefer, J. M.


    Accurate resolution of both the timing and magnitude of Late-Holocene climate events, such as the Little Ice Age, is vital in order to test different hypotheses for the causes and propagation of such climate variability. However, in contrast to higher latitudes, well-dated records from the tropics are relatively rare and the overall climatic structure of the last millennium remains unresolved. Much of this uncertainty stems from difficulties associated with radiocarbon dating in these dry, often high-altitude environments, a situation that now is being addressed through the application and refinement of cosmogenic surface-exposure methods. We present detailed Late-Holocene moraine records, resolved with radiocarbon and surface-exposure dating, from sites across the Andes of southern Peru. Specifically, we describe glacial records from both the arid Western Cordillera, where glaciation is limited by moisture availability, and the humid Eastern Cordillera, where ablation is controlled primarily by air temperature. In both locations, the most recent advance is marked by two to three unweathered terminal moraines located several hundred metres beyond the modern ice margins. Our chronology indicates that, while the advance occurred broadly in step with the classic 'Little Ice Age', the maximum glacial extent in southern Peru was achieved relatively early on and that the 18th and 19th centuries were dominated by glacier retreat. In a broader temporal context, our data also confirm that, in contrast to northern temperate latitudes, the event in southern Peru was the most recent significant interruption in a progressive Holocene retreat. The consistency in glacier response between the different climate zones suggests (i) that this pattern of Late-Holocene climate variability was of at least regional extent and (ii) that temperature fluctuations were the primary driving mechanism.

  5. 8800 years of high-altitude vegetation and climate history at the Rutor Glacier forefield, Italian Alps. Evidence of middle Holocene timberline rise and glacier contraction (United States)

    Badino, Federica; Ravazzi, Cesare; Vallè, Francesca; Pini, Roberta; Aceti, Amelia; Brunetti, Michele; Champvillair, Elena; Maggi, Valter; Maspero, Francesco; Perego, Renata; Orombelli, Giuseppe


    Sedimentary archives at or near the timberline ecotone in Alpine glaciated areas contain records to study Holocene climate change and the interplay between climate, ecosystems, and humans. We focused on records of timberline and glacier oscillations in the Rutor Glacier forefield (Western Italian Alps) in the last 8800 years. Human activity in this area was negligible for most of the Holocene. We adopted an integrative stratigraphic approach including proxies for glacier advance and timberline estimation, sedimentary events, and reconstructed temperatures. Changes in timberline ecotone correlate to climate until the Middle Ages. Pollen-stratigraphic evidence of a primary plant succession highlights a lag beween local deglaciation and the first reliable 14C age. The radiocarbon chronology points to a prolonged phase of glacier contraction between 8.8 and 3.7 ka cal BP. Even later the glacier remained within its LIA limits. Between 8.4 and 4 ka cal BP MAT-inferred TJuly fluctuated near 12.4 °C, ca. 3.1 °C higher than today. During this period, a Pinus cembra forest belt grew at 2600 m asl with an upper limit of tree groves placed 434 ± 310 m above the current open forest limit. This Holocene phase of thermal maximum ended between 3.98 and 3.51 ± 70 ka cal BP and with a substantial rearrangement of forest composition; temperature reconstruction shows a decrease of 1.8 °C. This climate deterioration concluded the Subboreal thermal optimum, mirroring glacial advances widely documented in the Alps. The Rutor Glacier advanced at ca. AD 1093 ± 65, and remained inside the LIA maximum extent. The LIA started since AD 1594, and culminated between AD 1751 and 1864.

  6. Simulation of historic glacier variations with a simple climate-glacier model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.


    Glacier variations during the last few centuries have shown a marked coherence over the globe. Characteristic features are the maximum stand somewhere in the middle of the nineteenth century, and the steady retreat afterwards (with some minor interrruptions depending on the particular region).

  7. Holocene glacier activity reconstructed from proglacial lake Gjøavatnet on Amsterdamøya, NW Svalbard (United States)

    de Wet, Gregory A.; Balascio, Nicholas L.; D'Andrea, William J.; Bakke, Jostein; Bradley, Raymond S.; Perren, Bianca


    Well-dated and highly resolved paleoclimate records from high latitudes allow for a better understanding of past climate change. Lake sediments are excellent archives of environmental change, and can record processes occurring within the catchment, such as the growth or demise of an upstream glacier. Here we present a Holocene-length, multi-proxy lake sediment record from proglacial lake Gjøavatnet on the island of Amsterdamøya, northwest Svalbard. Today, Gjøavatnet receives meltwater from the Annabreen glacier and contains a record of changes in glacier activity linked to regional climate conditions. We measured changes in organic matter content, dry bulk density, bulk carbon isotopes, elemental concentrations via Itrax core-scanning, and diatom community composition to reconstruct variability in glacier extent back through time. Our reconstruction indicates that glacially derived sedimentation in the lake decreased markedly at ∼11.1 cal kyr BP, although a glacier likely persisted in the catchment until ∼8.4 cal kyr BP. During the mid-Holocene (∼8.4-1.0 cal kyr BP) there was significantly limited glacial influence in the catchment and enhanced deposition of organic-rich sediment in the lake. The deposition of organic rich sediments during this time was interrupted by at least three multi-centennial intervals of reduced organic matter accumulation (∼5.9-5.0, 2.7-2.0, and 1.7-1.5 cal kyr BP). Considering our chronological information and a sedimentological comparison with intervals of enhanced glacier input, we interpret these intervals not as glacial advances, but rather as cold/dry episodes that inhibited organic matter production in the lake and surrounding catchment. At ∼1.0 cal kyr BP, input of glacially derived sediment to Gjøavatnet abruptly increased, representing the rapid expansion of the Annabreen glacier.

  8. Clinal variation of some mammals during the Holocene in Missouri (United States)

    Purdue, James R.


    Eastern cottontail ( Sylvilagus floridanus), fox squirrel ( Sciurus niger), and gray squirrel ( Sciurus carolinensis) were examined for clinal variation during the Holocene. Modern samples of all three species displayed strong east-west patterns along the western edge of the eastern deciduous forest: S. floridanus and S. niger decrease and S. carolinensis increases in size. Archeological samples of S. carolinensis from Rodgers Shelter (23BE125), Benton County, Missouri, and Graham Cave (23MT2), Montgomery County, Missouri, indicated an increase in size from early to middle Holocene. Sylvilagus floridanus from Rodgers Shelter decreased in size from early to middle Holocene and then increased during the late Holocene to modern proportions. A literature survey reveals that clinal variation is a common phenomenon among modern homeotherms. In introduced species, clinal variation has developed after relatively few generations, indicating rapid adaptations to environmental conditions; often winter climatic variables are implicated. Morphological variation in the study species during the Holocene is interpreted as a response to changing climates. Studies of morphological clines may lead to another valuable data source for reconstructing past ecologies.

  9. One Isotope, Two Tales: using plant and cosmogenic 14C to constrain Holocene glacier activity on Baffin Island. (United States)

    Pendleton, S.; Miller, G. H.; Lifton, N. A.; Young, N. E.


    As the cryosphere continues to undergo rapid and accelerating change, it is more important than ever to understand past glacier activity to predict the future of the cryosphere. However, continuous Holocene glacier records are notoriously difficult to reconstruct because an advancing glacier will re-incorporate previous deposits so that moraines typically only record the farthest downvalley glacier expansion. Here we combine dates of ice margin advance from in situ dead vegetation with in situ cosmogenic 14C (in situ 14C) from preserved bedrock surfaces at the same locations to further constrain the timing of ice-free episodes during the Holocene following deglaciation on southern Baffin Island. Radiocarbon ages from recently exposed in situ plants suggest that ice last advanced over sample locations at 9.4, 9.2, 9.0, and 3.7 ka and that they remained ice covered until modern times. Associated in situ 14C inventories are variable, but well above background levels, suggesting some amount of Holocene in situ 14C production. Using plant 14C ages representing the beginning of ice coverage and in situ 14C inventories representative of exposure prior to ice coverage, a simple model of cosmogenic in situ 14C production (accounting for muon production through ice) provides constraints timing and duration of ice-free times at sample locations prior to their most recent burial. Using conservative Holocene ice thicknesses, the locations buried at 9.4, 9.2, and 9.0 ka require, at minimum, 1000 years of pre-burial exposure to match the observed in situ 14C inventory. This suggests these locations were ice free by at least 10 ka and likely earlier. The in situ 14C inventory at the location buried at 3.7 ka limits prior exposure to 2000 years, suggesting that this location experienced more complex Holocene ice cover/burial history. These pilot data show that valuable information regarding periods of exposure is contained within in situ 14C inventories. Additional paired plant and

  10. Multiproxy records of Holocene climate and glacier variability from sediment cores in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (United States)

    Schweinsberg, A. D.; Licciardi, J. M.; Rodbell, D. T.; Stansell, N.; Tapia, P. M.


    Sediments contained in glacier-fed lakes and bogs provide continuous high-resolution records of glacial activity, and preserve multiproxy evidence of Holocene climate change. Tropical glacier fluctuations offer critical insight on regional paleoclimatic trends and controls, however, continuous sediment records of past tropical climates are limited. Recent cosmogenic 10Be surface exposure ages of moraine sequences in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (13°20'S latitude) reveal a glacial culmination during the early Holocene and a less extensive glaciation coincident with the Little Ice Age of the Northern Hemisphere. Here we supplement the existing 10Be moraine chronology with the first continuous records of multiproxy climate data in this mountain range from sediment cores recovered from bogs in direct stratigraphic contact with 10Be-dated moraines. Radiocarbon-dated sedimentological changes in a 2-meter long bog core reveal that the Holocene is characterized by alternating inorganic and organic-rich laminae, suggesting high-frequency climatic variability. Carbon measurements, bulk density, and bulk sedimentation rates are used to derive a record of clastic sediment flux that serves as a proxy indicator of former glacier activity. Preliminary analyses of the bog core reveal approximately 70 diatom taxa that indicate both rheophilic and lentic environments. Initial results show a general decrease in magnetic susceptibility and clastic flux throughout the early to mid-Holocene, which suggests an interval of deglaciation. An episode of high clastic flux from 3.8 to 2.0 ka may reflect a late Holocene glacial readvance. Volcanic glass fragments and an anomalous peak in magnetic susceptibility may correspond to the historical 1600 AD eruption of Huaynaputina. Ten new bog and lake sediment cores were collected during the 2012 field expedition and analytical measurements are underway. Ongoing efforts are focused on analyzing diatom assemblage data, developing

  11. Tropical Andean and African glacier extent through the Holocene assessed with proglacial in situ 14C and 10Be measurements (United States)

    Vickers, A. C.; Shakun, J. D.; Goehring, B. M.; Kelly, M. A.; Jackson, M. S.; Jomelli, V.


    We present measurements of the in situ cosmogenic radionuclides 14C and 10Be from recently exposed proglacial bedrock samples at the margin of the Quelccaya Ice Cap in Peru (n=5) and the Rwenzori mountains in Africa (n=3) to calculate cumulative exposure, burial, and erosion histories at these sites over the Holocene. The Holocene history (11 ka - present) of tropical glaciers gives important context to their observed retreat over the last century, insight into their sensitivity to climate forcing, and constraints on past climate change. Paired in situ 14C/10Be methods are used to exploit the multiple controls on nuclide concentrations and their differing half-lives (5730 years vs 1.38 Myr). In particular, the concentrations of both 14C and 10Be increase with exposure and decrease with glacial erosion; however,14C decreases not only due to glacial erosion, but also in appreciable amounts due to radio-decay during periods of burial as short as 800 years. Our results show similarities at both sites, with moderately high 10Be concentrations but 14C/10Be ratios approximately one-third of the production value, suggesting that both sites experienced several thousand years of exposure followed by burial during the mid-to-late Holocene. Our results are consistent with recently exposed subfossil plant remains at the Quelccaya margin that imply ice extended beyond its current position since 5.2 ka We will also present 10Be ages of several boulders from probable Little Ice Age moraines of the Charquini Sur Glacier in Bolivia (n=2) and Ritacuba Negro Glacier in Colombia (n=4) to better understand the timing of Little Ice Age advances in the tropical Andes.

  12. Coastal glaciers advanced onto Jameson Land, East Greenland during the late glacial–early Holocene Milne Land Stade

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helena Alexanderson


    Full Text Available We report on 10Be and optically stimulated luminescence ages from moraines and glaciolacustrine sediments on eastern Jameson Land, East Greenland. Sampled landforms and sediment are associated with advances of outlet glaciers from the local Liverpool Land ice cap situated in the coastal Scoresby Sund region. Previous studies have tentatively correlated these advances with the Milne Land Stade moraines, which are prominent moraine sets deposited by mountain glaciers in the inner Scoresby Sund region. Recent constraints on the formation of the outer and inner of these moraines have suggested two advances of local glaciers, one prior to or during the Younger Dryas and another during the Preboreal. In this paper, we test the correlation of the Liverpool Land glacial advance with the Milne Land Stade. Our results show that outlet glaciers from the Liverpool Land ice cap reached ice-marginal positions marked by moraines in east-facing valleys on Jameson Land sometime during late glacial–early Holocene time (ca. 13–11 Kya. This confirms the correlation of these moraines with the Milne Land Stade moraines described elsewhere in the Scoresby Sund region.

  13. Glaciers (United States)

    Hambrey, Michael; Alean, Jürg


    Glaciers are among the most beautiful natural wonders on Earth, as well as the least known and understood, for most of us. Michael Hambrey describes how glaciers grow and decay, move and influence human civilization. Currently covering a tenth of the Earth's surface, glacier ice has shaped the landscape over millions of years by scouring away rocks and transporting and depositing debris far from its source. Glacier meltwater drives turbines and irrigates deserts, and yields mineral-rich soils as well as a wealth of valuable sand and gravel. However, glaciers also threaten human property and life. Our future is indirectly connected with the fate of glaciers and their influence on global climate and sea level. Including over 200 stunning photographs, the book takes the reader from the High-Arctic through North America, Europe, Asia, Africa, New Zealand and South America to the Antarctic. Michael Hambrey is Director of the Centre for Glaciology at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. A past recipient of the Polar Medal, he was also given the Earth Science Editors' Outstanding Publication Award for the first edition of Glaciers (Cambridge, 1995). Hambrey is also the author of Glacial Environments (British Columbia, 1994). JÜrg Alean is Professor of Geography at the Kantonsschule ZÜrcher Unterland in BÜlach, Switzerland.

  14. Biomarker records of Holocene climate variations in Asian interior (United States)

    Song, M.; Liu, Z.; Liu, W.; Zhao, C.; Li, S.; He, Y.


    Understanding Holocene climate fluctuation may provide clues to projection of future climate change. Lake sediments in the arid central Asia (ACA), as an archive of past climate information, keep attracting considerable interest. We have retrieved several sediment cores from Lake Manas, an endorheic lake in Zunggar desert, Xinjiang Province, China. Biomarker proxies including alkenone Uk'37, %C37:4 and C37 concentration (C37 Conc), and physical proxies including density and magnetic susceptibility (MS) have been analyzed. We have found substantial climatic and environmental changes during the late Holocene. Density, MS and Uk'37 values are high during Medieval Warm Period (MWP) and C37 Conc is very low. During the Little Ice Age, density and MS decrease, Uk'37 values drop to near 0.1, C37 Conc is increased by 2 to 3 magnitude. Thus, warm and dry conditions dominated MWP while cold and wet conditions dominated LIA, a typical "Westerly" pattern which is opposite to the hydrological variation in Asian monsoonal regions. Biomarker records' correlation with solar irradiance (SI), the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), the 1000year ACA Moisture Index (ACAM), and the North Hemisphere Temperature (NHT) suggests SI as one of the forcing factor on temperature fluctuation and cold and wet LIA possibly resulting from westerly-jet shift, negative NAO oscillation and the lower evaporation induced by the decrease of temperature. Biomarker records for the whole Holocene will be also presented.

  15. Seasonal variations in vertical migration of glacier lanternfish, Benthosema glaciale

    KAUST Repository

    Dypvik, Eivind; Rø stad, Anders; Kaartvedt, Stein


    The seasonal variations in glacier lanternfish (Benthosema glaciale) vertical distribution and diel vertical migration (DVM) were studied by use of a bottom-mounted upward-facing 38 kHz echo sounder deployed at 392 m depth and cabled to shore in Masfjorden (~6052?N, ~524?E), Norway. Acoustic data from July 2007-October 2008 were analyzed, and scattering layers below ~220 m during daytime were attributed to glacier lanternfish based on net sampling in this, and previous studies, as well as from analysis of the acoustic data. At these depths, three different diel behavioral strategies were apparent: normal diel vertical migration (NDVM), inverse DVM (IDVM), and no DVM (NoDVM). NoDVM was present all year, while IDVM was present in autumn and winter, and NDVM was present during spring and summer. The seasonal differences in DVM behavior seem to correlate with previously established seasonal distribution of prey. We hypothesize that in regions with seasonally migrating zooplankton, such as where calanoid copepods overwinter at depth, similar plasticity in DVM behavior might occur in other populations of lanternfishes. 2012 The Author(s).

  16. Seasonal variations in vertical migration of glacier lanternfish, Benthosema glaciale

    KAUST Repository

    Dypvik, Eivind


    The seasonal variations in glacier lanternfish (Benthosema glaciale) vertical distribution and diel vertical migration (DVM) were studied by use of a bottom-mounted upward-facing 38 kHz echo sounder deployed at 392 m depth and cabled to shore in Masfjorden (~6052?N, ~524?E), Norway. Acoustic data from July 2007-October 2008 were analyzed, and scattering layers below ~220 m during daytime were attributed to glacier lanternfish based on net sampling in this, and previous studies, as well as from analysis of the acoustic data. At these depths, three different diel behavioral strategies were apparent: normal diel vertical migration (NDVM), inverse DVM (IDVM), and no DVM (NoDVM). NoDVM was present all year, while IDVM was present in autumn and winter, and NDVM was present during spring and summer. The seasonal differences in DVM behavior seem to correlate with previously established seasonal distribution of prey. We hypothesize that in regions with seasonally migrating zooplankton, such as where calanoid copepods overwinter at depth, similar plasticity in DVM behavior might occur in other populations of lanternfishes. 2012 The Author(s).

  17. Seasonal and altitudinal variations in snow algal communities on an Alaskan glacier (Gulkana glacier in the Alaska range)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takeuchi, Nozomu


    Snow and ice algae are cold tolerant algae growing on the surface of snow and ice, and they play an important role in the carbon cycles for glaciers and snowfields in the world. Seasonal and altitudinal variations in seven major taxa of algae (green algae and cyanobacteria) were investigated on the Gulkana glacier in Alaska at six different elevations from May to September in 2001. The snow algal communities and their biomasses changed over time and elevation. Snow algae were rarely observed on the glacier in May although air temperature had been above 0 ° C since the middle of the month and surface snow had melted. In June, algae appeared in the lower areas of the glacier, where the ablation ice surface was exposed. In August, the distribution of algae was extended to the upper parts of the glacier as the snow line was elevated. In September, the glacier surface was finally covered with new winter snow, which terminated algal growth in the season. Mean algal biomass of the study sites continuously increased and reached 6.3 × 10 μl m −2 in cell volume or 13 mg carbon m −2 in September. The algal community was dominated by Chlamydomonas nivalis on the snow surface, and by Ancylonema nordenskiöldii and Mesotaenium berggrenii on the ice surface throughout the melting season. Other algae were less abundant and appeared in only a limited area of the glacier. Results in this study suggest that algae on both snow and ice surfaces significantly contribute to the net production of organic carbon on the glacier and substantially affect surface albedo of the snow and ice during the melting season. (letter)

  18. Reconciling divergent trends and millennial variations in Holocene temperatures (United States)

    Marsicek, Jeremiah; Shuman, Bryan N.; Bartlein, Patrick J.; Shafer, Sarah L.; Brewer, Simon


    Cooling during most of the past two millennia has been widely recognized and has been inferred to be the dominant global temperature trend of the past 11,700 years (the Holocene epoch). However, long-term cooling has been difficult to reconcile with global forcing, and climate models consistently simulate long-term warming. The divergence between simulations and reconstructions emerges primarily for northern mid-latitudes, for which pronounced cooling has been inferred from marine and coastal records using multiple approaches. Here we show that temperatures reconstructed from sub-fossil pollen from 642 sites across North America and Europe closely match simulations, and that long-term warming, not cooling, defined the Holocene until around 2,000 years ago. The reconstructions indicate that evidence of long-term cooling was limited to North Atlantic records. Early Holocene temperatures on the continents were more than two degrees Celsius below those of the past two millennia, consistent with the simulated effects of remnant ice sheets in the climate model Community Climate System Model 3 (CCSM3). CCSM3 simulates increases in ‘growing degree days’—a measure of the accumulated warmth above five degrees Celsius per year—of more than 300 kelvin days over the Holocene, consistent with inferences from the pollen data. It also simulates a decrease in mean summer temperatures of more than two degrees Celsius, which correlates with reconstructed marine trends and highlights the potential importance of the different subseasonal sensitivities of the records. Despite the differing trends, pollen- and marine-based reconstructions are correlated at millennial-to-centennial scales, probably in response to ice-sheet and meltwater dynamics, and to stochastic dynamics similar to the temperature variations produced by CCSM3. Although our results depend on a single source of palaeoclimatic data (pollen) and a single climate-model simulation, they reinforce the notion that

  19. Holocene RSL variation on southwestern Disko Island (Greenland)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Emerich Souza, Priscila; Nielsen, Lars; Kroon, Aart

    We investigate RSL variations during the Holocene in Lakse Bugt by assessing topography, internal structure, and luminescence ages of fossil beach ridges and the modern beach. Lakse Bugt (Bay) lies on the southwestern coast of Disko Island in a mesotidal regime and a mild wave climate. Beach ridges...... are widespread over the marine terrace, extending from ~40 above sea level (m asl). The most recent ridges terminate either at the beach or at the coastal sandy cliffs ~8 m asl immediately behind the modern beach. These ridges are covered mainly by rounded boulders; the terrain surfaces of the swales have...... clearly been deformed by freezing and thawing processes, in contrast to those of the ridge crests, which are relatively smooth. High-resolution reflection GPR data and high resolution topographical data were collected along cross-shore transects using a shielded 250 MHz antennae system and a DGPS system...

  20. Temporal variations in supraglacial debris distribution on Baltoro Glacier, Karakoram between 2001 and 2012 (United States)

    Gibson, Morgan J.; Glasser, Neil F.; Quincey, Duncan J.; Mayer, Christoph; Rowan, Ann V.; Irvine-Fynn, Tristram D. L.


    Distribution of supraglacial debris in a glacier system varies spatially and temporally due to differing rates of debris input, transport and deposition. Supraglacial debris distribution governs the thickness of a supraglacial debris layer, an important control on the amount of ablation that occurs under such a debris layer. Characterising supraglacial debris layer thickness on a glacier is therefore key to calculating ablation across a glacier surface. The spatial pattern of debris thickness on Baltoro Glacier has previously been calculated for one discrete point in time (2004) using satellite thermal data and an empirically based relationship between supraglacial debris layer thickness and debris surface temperature identified in the field. Here, the same empirically based relationship was applied to two further datasets (2001, 2012) to calculate debris layer thickness across Baltoro Glacier for three discrete points over an 11-year period (2001, 2004, 2012). Surface velocity and sediment flux were also calculated, as well as debris thickness change between periods. Using these outputs, alongside geomorphological maps of Baltoro Glacier produced for 2001, 2004 and 2012, spatiotemporal changes in debris distribution for a sub-decadal timescale were investigated. Sediment flux remained constant throughout the 11-year period. The greatest changes in debris thickness occurred along medial moraines, the locations of mass movement deposition and areas of interaction between tributary glaciers and the main glacier tongue. The study confirms the occurrence of spatiotemporal changes in supraglacial debris layer thickness on sub-decadal timescales, independent of variation in surface velocity. Instead, variation in rates of debris distribution are primarily attributed to frequency and magnitude of mass movement events over decadal timescales, with climate, regional uplift and erosion rates expected to control debris inputs over centurial to millennial timescales. Inclusion

  1. Southern Alaska Glaciers: Spatial and Temporal Variations in Ice Volume (United States)

    Sauber, J.; Molnia, B. F.; Lutchke, S.; Rowlands, D.; Harding, D.; Carabajal, C.; Hurtado, J. M.; Spade, G.


    Although temperate mountain glaciers comprise less than 1% of the glacier-covered area on Earth, they are important because they appear to be melting rapidly under present climatic conditions and, therefore, make significant contributions to rising sea level. In this study, we use ICESat observations made in the last 1.5 years of southern Alaska glaciers to estimate ice elevation profiles, ice surface slopes and roughness, and bi-annual and/or annual ice elevation changes. We report initial results from the near coastal region between Yakutat Bay and Cape Suckling that includes the Malaspina and Bering Glaciers. We show and interpret ice elevations changes across the lower reaches of the Bagley Ice Valley for the period between October 2003 and May 2004. In addition, we use off-nadir pointing observations to reference tracks over the Bering and Malaspina Glaciers in order to estimate annual ice elevation change. Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) derived DEMs are used to estimate across track regional slopes between ICESat data acquisitions. Although the distribution and quantity of ICESat elevation profiles with multiple, exact repeat data is currently limited in Alaska, individual ICESat data tracks, provide an accurate reference surface for comparison to other elevation data (e.g. ASTER and SRTM X- and C-band derived DEMs). Specifically we report the elevation change over the Malaspina Glacier's piedmont lobe between a DEM derived from SRTM C-band data acquired in Feb. 2000 and ICESat Laser #2b data from Feb.-March 2004. We also report use of ICESat elevation data to enhance ASTER derived absolute DEMs. Mountain glaciers generally have rougher surfaces and steeper regional slopes than the ice sheets for which the ICESat design was optimized. Therefore, rather than averaging ICESat observations over large regions or relying on crossovers, we are working with well-located ICESat

  2. Spatial and temporal variations in glacier hydrology on Storglaciaeren, Sweden

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jansson, Peter; Naeslund, Jens-Ove


    The aim of the current research project was to provide a framework of real conditions within which to interpret theory and extrapolate likely conditions beneath a future ice sheet over Fennoscandia. The purpose of this report is to summarize the experimental work on glacier hydrology and basal hydraulic conditions performed on Storglaciaeren, northern Sweden, during the years 1990-2006. Surface fed subglacial hydrological systems are extremely dynamic because the input rates of rain and temperature-controlled surface melt fluctuate, and the geometry of flow paths is constantly changing due to ice deformation which tends to open and close the flow paths. The hydrological system of a glacier is quite unusual because since liquid water flows through conduits made of its solid phase (ice). Understanding the expected dynamic range of a glacier's hydrological system is best studied by in situ measurements. The processes studied on Storglaciaeren can be expected to apply to ice sheet scale, albeit on different spatial scales. Since Storglaciaeren is a polythermal glacier with a large fraction of ice below freezing and at the melting point and with a surface-fed hydrological system of conduits and tunnels, results apply to the lower elevation regions where the surface is composed of ice (ablation zone) rather than composed of snow (accumulation zone) found at higher elevations of the glaciers and ice sheets, Therefore, our results apply to the ablation zone of the past Fennoscandian Ice Sheet. In this report we discuss the measurements made to assess the subglacial conditions that provide a potential analogue for conditions under the Fennoscandian Ice Sheet. For this purpose field work was performed on from 2003 to 2006 yielding subglacial water pressure measurements. We have included a large quantity of unpublished data from Storglaciaeren from different research projects conducted since 1990. Together these data provide a picture of the temporal and spatial water

  3. Spatial and temporal variations in glacier hydrology on Storglaciaeren, Sweden

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jansson, Peter (Dept. of Physical Geography and Quaternary Geology, Stockholm Univ., Stockholm (Sweden)); Naeslund, Jens-Ove (Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co., Stockholm (Sweden))


    The aim of the current research project was to provide a framework of real conditions within which to interpret theory and extrapolate likely conditions beneath a future ice sheet over Fennoscandia. The purpose of this report is to summarize the experimental work on glacier hydrology and basal hydraulic conditions performed on Storglaciaeren, northern Sweden, during the years 1990-2006. Surface fed subglacial hydrological systems are extremely dynamic because the input rates of rain and temperature-controlled surface melt fluctuate, and the geometry of flow paths is constantly changing due to ice deformation which tends to open and close the flow paths. The hydrological system of a glacier is quite unusual because since liquid water flows through conduits made of its solid phase (ice). Understanding the expected dynamic range of a glacier's hydrological system is best studied by in situ measurements. The processes studied on Storglaciaeren can be expected to apply to ice sheet scale, albeit on different spatial scales. Since Storglaciaeren is a polythermal glacier with a large fraction of ice below freezing and at the melting point and with a surface-fed hydrological system of conduits and tunnels, results apply to the lower elevation regions where the surface is composed of ice (ablation zone) rather than composed of snow (accumulation zone) found at higher elevations of the glaciers and ice sheets, Therefore, our results apply to the ablation zone of the past Fennoscandian Ice Sheet. In this report we discuss the measurements made to assess the subglacial conditions that provide a potential analogue for conditions under the Fennoscandian Ice Sheet. For this purpose field work was performed on from 2003 to 2006 yielding subglacial water pressure measurements. We have included a large quantity of unpublished data from Storglaciaeren from different research projects conducted since 1990. Together these data provide a picture of the temporal and spatial water

  4. Assessing streamflow sensitivity to variations in glacier mass balance (United States)

    O'Neel, Shad; Hood, Eran; Arendt, Anthony; Sass, Louis


    The mountains ringing the Gulf of Alaska (GOA) receive upwards of 4–8 m yr−1 of precipitation (Simpson et al.2005; Weingartner et al. 2005; O’Neel 2012), much of which runs off into productive coastal waters. The alpine landscape is heavily glacierized, and storage and turnover of water by glaciers substantially influences the regional surface water balance (Neal et al. 2010). In turn, the land-to-ocean flux of freshwater impacts the biogeochemistry, physical oceanography, freshwater and marine ecology of the downstream components of the GOA ecosystem (e.g., Royer et al. 2001; Hood and Scott 2008). In this way, the links between terrestrial and ocean ecosystems along the GOA have widespread impacts on regional socioeconomic issues including water and hydropower resources, fish populations, and sea level change (Dorava and Milner 2000; Royer and Grosch 2006; Cherry et al. 2010; Gardner et al. 2013). Moreover, predicting future changes in physical, chemical and biological processes in near-shore ecosystems along the GOA hinges, in part, on developing a robust understanding of water storage and transfer by glaciers through streams to the ocean.

  5. Spatial Variations and Sources of Trace Elements in Recent Snow from Glaciers at the Tibetan Plateau (United States)

    Huang, J.; Li, Y.; Li, Z.; Cozzi, G.; Turetta, C.; Barbante, C.; Xiong, L.


    Various trace element (TEs) could be long-range transported through the atmosphere and deposited onto the snow surface. Recently, with the development of economy of China and the surrounding countries, TEs such as Pb, Cd, Mo and Sb in several glaciers from the Tibetan Plateau (TP) have been gradually affected by anthropogenic activities. This study presents the acid leached concentrations of TEs (e.g., Al, As, Ba, Co, Cr, Cs, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Pb, Rb, Sb, Sr, Ti, Tl, U, V) and dust content sampled from Qiumianleike (QMLK), Meikuang (MK), Yuzhufeng (YZF), Xiaodongkemadi (XDKMD), Gurenhekou (GRHK) glaciers on the TP from April to May of 2013. The different concentrations of TEs in the surface snow and snow pit samples over the five glaciers show that TEs were influenced both by surrounding environment of glaciers and seasonal variations of atmospheric impurity loading. Comparison of TEs concentrations with data of other sites, elevated concentrations of As, Cu, Mo, Pb and Sb were observed in glaciers of TP, showing significant atmospheric TEs pollution. Enrichment factor(EF) analysis indicates that Rb, V, U, Cr, Ba, Cs, Li, As, Co, Mn, Tl, Sr and Cu mainly originated from crustal dust, while anthropogenic inputs such as nonferrous metals melting, coal combustion and traffic emission made an important contribution to the Mo, Pb and Sb. Evidences from air mass back trajectories show the air masses arrived at QMLK mostly came from the Taklimakan desert, the TEs from the Taklimakan desert and the western TP could be transported to the MK and YZF glaciers . The air masses derived from the western TP and the southwestern TP affected the environment of the XDKMD and GRHK glaciers. Futhermore, the air masses passed through some big cities with developed industry and large population such as Urumqi, Bishkek, Dushanbe and some countries such as Pakistan and India could also bring pollutants to the studied glaciers.

  6. Holocene surge-history of the Eyjabakkajökull glacier inferred from varved lake sediments on eastern Iceland (United States)

    Striberger, J.; Bjorck, S.; Ingolfsson, O.; Kjaer, K.; Snowball, I.; Uvo, C. B.


    more distinct. Further down in the sequence, the recurring cycles of light-coloured laminae are not found and any varves are in general diffuse or missing. Hypothetically, the reason for this might be that the suspended matter delivered from the glacier was transported elsewhere at this time. However, based on the large-scale morphology of the area, we find it more likely that Eyjabakkajökull, and thus parts of, or the whole Vatnajökull ice cap, was smaller or perhaps not present during the mid-Holocene and thus had little or no influence on the sedimentation in Lake Lögurinn.

  7. Geographical variations in Sr and Nd isotopic ratios of cryoconite on Asian glaciers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nagatsuka, Naoko; Takeuchi, Nozomu; Nakano, Takanori; Shin, Kicheol; Kokado, Emi


    Cryoconite is a dark-coloured surface dust deposited on glaciers that consists of wind-blown mineral particles, as well as organic matter derived from microbes living on glaciers. In this paper, we analyse the Sr and Nd isotopic ratios of four mineral fractions (i.e., the saline, carbonate, phosphate, and silicate mineral fractions), as well as the organic fraction, of cryoconite samples obtained from six Asian glaciers (the Altai, Pamir, Tien Shan, Qillian Shan, and Himalayan regions), and discuss their geographical variations in terms of the geological origins of the mineral particles and the biogeochemical processes on the glaciers. The silicate mineral fraction showed lower Sr and higher Nd ratios for the glaciers located to the north (Altai, 87 Sr/ 86 Sr: 0.713 490–0.715 284, εNd(0): −6.4 to −5.6), while higher Sr and lower Nd ratios for the glaciers located to the south (Himalayas, 87 Sr/ 86 Sr: 0.740 121–0.742 088, εNd(0): −16.4 to −15.7); the ratios were similar to those of desert sand, loess, and river sediments in the respective regions of the glaciers. This result suggests that the silicate minerals within the cryoconites were derived from different sources depending on the geographical locations of the glaciers. The isotopic ratios of the saline, carbonate, and phosphate mineral fractions were distinct from those of the silicate fraction, and were similar to those of evaporites and apatite deposits from the Asian deserts, but also varied geographically, indicating that they are likely to reflect their geological origin. The Sr isotopic ratios of the organic fraction were similar to those of the saline and carbonate fractions from glaciers in the central area (Tien Shan and Qillian Shan), but were higher than those of the saline and carbonate fractions, and lower than the phosphate mineral fraction, in the northern and southern areas. The ratios of organic fraction may be determined from the mixing ratio of calcium sources

  8. Multidecadal variations in the early Holocene outflow of Red Sea Water into the Arabian Sea

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jung, S.J.A.; Ganssen, G.M.; Davies, G.R.


    We present Holocene stable oxygen isotope data from the deep Arabian Sea off Somalia at a decadal time resolution as a proxy for the history of intermediate/upper deep water. These data show an overall δ18O reduction by 0.5‰ between 10 and ~6.5 kyr B.P. superimposed upon short-term δ18O variations

  9. Holocene hydrologic variation at Lake Titicaca, Bolivia/Peru, and its relationship to North Atlantic climate variation (United States)

    Baker, P. A.; Fritz, S. C.; Garland, J.; Ekdahl, E.


    A growing number of sites in the Northern Hemisphere show centennial- to millennial-scale climate variation that has been correlated with change in solar variability or with change in North Atlantic circulation. However, it is unclear how (or whether) these oscillations in the climate system are manifest in the Southern Hemisphere because of a lack of sites with suitably high sampling resolution. In this paper, we reconstruct the lake-level history of Lake Titicaca, using the carbon isotopic content of sedimentary organic matter, to evaluate centennial- to millennial-scale precipitation variation and its phasing relative to sites in the Northern Hemisphere. The pattern and timing of lake-level change in Lake Titicaca is similar to the ice-rafted debris record of Holocene Bond events, demonstrating a possible coupling between precipitation variation on the Altiplano and North Atlantic sea-surface temperatures (SSTs). The cold periods of the Holocene Bond events correspond with periods of increased precipitation on the Altiplano. Holocene precipitation variability on the Altiplano is anti-phased with respect to precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere monsoon region. More generally, the tropical Andes underwent large changes in precipitation on centennial-to-millennial timescales during the Holocene.

  10. Stable water isotope variation in a Central Andean watershed dominated by glacier and snowmelt

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Ohlanders


    Full Text Available Central Chile is an economically important region for which water supply is dependent on snow- and ice melt. Nevertheless, the relative contribution of water supplied by each of those two sources remains largely unknown. This study represents the first attempt to estimate the region's water balance using stable isotopes of water in streamflow and its sources. Isotopic ratios of both H and O were monitored during one year in a high-altitude basin with a moderate glacier cover (11.5%. We found that the steep altitude gradient of the studied catchment caused a corresponding gradient in snowpack isotopic composition and that this spatial variation had a profound effect on the temporal evolution of streamflow isotopic composition during snowmelt. Glacier melt and snowmelt contributions to streamflow in the studied basin were determined using a quantitative analysis of the isotopic composition of streamflow and its sources, resulting in a glacier melt contribution of 50–90% for the unusually dry melt year of 2011/2012. This suggests that in (La Niña years with little precipitation, glacier melt is an important water source for central Chile. Predicted decreases in glacier melt due to global warming may therefore have a negative long-term impact on water availability in the Central Andes. The pronounced seasonal pattern in streamflow isotope composition and its close relation to the variability in snow cover and discharge presents a potentially powerful tool to relate discharge variability in mountainous, melt-dominated catchments with related factors such as contributions of sources to streamflow and snowmelt transit times.

  11. Multidecadal variations in the early Holocene outflow of Red Sea Water into the Arabian Sea


    Jung, S.J.A.; Ganssen, G.M.; Davies, G.R.


    We present Holocene stable oxygen isotope data from the deep Arabian Sea off Somalia at a decadal time resolution as a proxy for the history of intermediate/upper deep water. These data show an overall δ18O reduction by 0.5‰ between 10 and ~6.5 kyr B.P. superimposed upon short-term δ18O variations at a decadal-centennial timescale. The amplitude of the decadal variations is 0.3‰ prior, and up to 0.6‰ subsequent, to ~8.1 kyr B.P. We conclude from modeling experiments that the short-term δ18O v...

  12. Timing and nature of Holocene glacier advances at the northwestern end of the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen (United States)

    Saha, Sourav; Owen, Lewis A.; Orr, Elizabeth N.; Caffee, Marc W.


    Holocene glacial chronostratigraphies are developed for four glaciated valleys at the northwestern end of the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen using geomorphic mapping and cosmogenic 10Be surface exposure dating. The study areas include the Hamtah valley in the Lahul Himalaya, and the Karzok, Lato and upper Stok valleys in Zanskar. Five local glacial stages are dated to ∼10.4, ∼6.1-3.3, ∼2.1-0.9, ∼0.7-0.4, and ∼0.3-0.2 ka based on 49 new moraine boulder ages. Large age dispersions are evident for each of the local glacial stages. This is especially the case for ∼6.1-3.3 and ∼2.1-0.9 ka, which is likely a result of prior and/or incomplete exposures in very young moraine boulders. An additional compilation of 187 published 10Be moraine boulder ages help define seven Himalayan Holocene regional glacial stages (HHs) for the northwestern end of the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen. These HHs date to ∼10.9-9.3, ∼8.2-7.4, ∼6.9-4.3, ∼4.5-2.8, ∼2.7-1.8, ∼1.8-0.9, and forced northerly migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone and enhanced summer monsoon. The timing of the majority of HHs during mid- and late Holocene corresponds well with the North Atlantic cooling that is likely teleconnected via mid-latitude westerlies, particularly during ∼8 ka and after ∼5 ka. These chronostratigraphies suggest that Holocene glaciation in the northwestern part of the Himalayan-Tibetan orogen is largely influenced by long-term orbital forcing amplified by large-scale migration of the Earth's thermal equator and the associated hemispheric oceanic-atmospheric systems.

  13. Glacial-interglacial changes and Holocene variations in Arabian Sea denitrification (United States)

    Gaye, Birgit; Böll, Anna; Segschneider, Joachim; Burdanowitz, Nicole; Emeis, Kay-Christian; Ramaswamy, Venkitasubramani; Lahajnar, Niko; Lückge, Andreas; Rixen, Tim


    At present, the Arabian Sea has a permanent oxygen minimum zone (OMZ) at water depths between about 100 and 1200 m. Active denitrification in the upper part of the OMZ is recorded by enhanced δ15N values in the sediments. Sediment cores show a δ15N increase during the middle and late Holocene, which is contrary to the trend in the other two regions of water column denitrification in the eastern tropical North and South Pacific. We calculated composite sea surface temperature (SST) and δ15N ratios in time slices of 1000 years of the last 25 kyr to better understand the reasons for the establishment of the Arabian Sea OMZ and its response to changes in the Asian monsoon system. Low δ15N values of 4-7 ‰ during the last glacial maximum (LGM) and stadials (Younger Dryas and Heinrich events) suggest that denitrification was inactive or weak during Pleistocene cold phases, while warm interstadials (ISs) had elevated δ15N. Fast changes in upwelling intensities and OMZ ventilation from the Antarctic were responsible for these strong millennial-scale variations during the glacial. During the entire Holocene δ15N values > 6 ‰ indicate a relatively stable OMZ with enhanced denitrification. The OMZ develops parallel to the strengthening of the SW monsoon and monsoonal upwelling after the LGM. Despite the relatively stable climatic conditions of the Holocene, the δ15N records show regionally different trends in the Arabian Sea. In the upwelling areas in the western part of the basin, δ15N values are lower during the mid-Holocene (4.2-8.2 ka BP) compared to the late Holocene ( ventilation of the OMZ during the period of the most intense southwest monsoonal upwelling. In contrast, δ15N values in the northern and eastern Arabian Sea rose during the last 8 kyr. The displacement of the core of the OMZ from the region of maximum productivity in the western Arabian Sea to its present position in the northeast was established during the middle and late Holocene. This was

  14. Paleoclimatic variations in Maknassy Basin (central Tunisia) during the Holocene period using multidisciplinary approaches

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zouari, K.; Chkir, N.; Ouda, B.


    The signature of humid climatic episodes in the Holocene paleoclimatic history of Tunisia are evident in outcroppings along riverbanks almost all over the Tunisian drainage network. Previous multidisciplinary studies have already identified some sites where these remnants can contribute valuable information for reconstruction of paleoenvironmental and paleoclimatic variations in the presently hyper-arid zone of the Northern Sahara. Sedimentary deposits outcropping on Wadi Leben and Wadi Ben Sellam banks, in the Maknassy Basin (Central Tunisia), have been sampled. Multidisciplinary studies, including prehistory, sedimentology, mineralogy, ecology and radiochronology have been conducted to improve palaeoenvironmental interpretations and to determine a precise chronological history of humid episodes during the Holocene in Tunisia. This paper deals with the interpretation of results obtained from the Maknassy Basin in comparison with some other Tunisian sites in order to highlight Holocene humid episodes. Establishment of a precise chronological framework is prerequisite to exploring potential relationships between the occurrence of humid phases and recharge of aquifers located in this area. (author)

  15. Multidecadal variations in the early Holocene outflow of Red Sea Water into the Arabian Sea (United States)

    Jung, S. J. A.; Ganssen, G. M.; Davies, G. R.


    We present Holocene stable oxygen isotope data from the deep Arabian Sea off Somalia at a decadal time resolution as a proxy for the history of intermediate/upper deep water. These data show an overall δ18O reduction by 0.5‰ between 10 and ˜6.5 kyr B.P. superimposed upon short-term δ18O variations at a decadal-centennial timescale. The amplitude of the decadal variations is 0.3‰ prior, and up to 0.6‰ subsequent, to ˜8.1 kyr B.P. We conclude from modeling experiments that the short-term δ18O variations between 10 and ˜6.5 kyr B.P. most likely document changes in the evaporation-precipitation balance in the central Red Sea. Changes in water temperature and salinity cause the outflowing Red Sea Water to settle roughly 800 m deeper than today.

  16. Variations in the geomagnetic dipole moment during the Holocene and the past 50 kyr (United States)

    Knudsen, Mads Faurschou; Riisager, Peter; Donadini, Fabio; Snowball, Ian; Muscheler, Raimund; Korhonen, Kimmo; Pesonen, Lauri J.


    All absolute paleointensity data published in peer-reviewed journals were recently compiled in the GEOMAGIA50 database. Based on the information in GEOMAGIA50, we reconstruct variations in the geomagnetic dipole moment over the past 50 kyr, with a focus on the Holocene period. A running-window approach is used to determine the axial dipole moment that provides the optimal least-squares fit to the paleointensity data, whereas associated error estimates are constrained using a bootstrap procedure. We subsequently compare the reconstruction from this study with previous reconstructions of the geomagnetic dipole moment, including those based on cosmogenic radionuclides ( 10Be and 14C). This comparison generally lends support to the axial dipole moments obtained in this study. Our reconstruction shows that the evolution of the dipole moment was highly dynamic, and the recently observed rates of change (5% per century) do not appear unique. We observe no apparent link between the occurrence of archeomagnetic jerks and changes in the geomagnetic dipole moment, suggesting that archeomagnetic jerks most likely represent drastic changes in the orientation of the geomagnetic dipole axis or periods characterized by large secular variation of the non-dipole field. This study also shows that the Holocene geomagnetic dipole moment was high compared to that of the preceding ˜ 40 kyr, and that ˜ 4 · 10 22 Am 2 appears to represent a critical threshold below which geomagnetic excursions and reversals occur.

  17. Glacial–interglacial changes and Holocene variations in Arabian Sea denitrification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Gaye


    Full Text Available At present, the Arabian Sea has a permanent oxygen minimum zone (OMZ at water depths between about 100 and 1200 m. Active denitrification in the upper part of the OMZ is recorded by enhanced δ15N values in the sediments. Sediment cores show a δ15N increase during the middle and late Holocene, which is contrary to the trend in the other two regions of water column denitrification in the eastern tropical North and South Pacific. We calculated composite sea surface temperature (SST and δ15N ratios in time slices of 1000 years of the last 25 kyr to better understand the reasons for the establishment of the Arabian Sea OMZ and its response to changes in the Asian monsoon system. Low δ15N values of 4–7 ‰ during the last glacial maximum (LGM and stadials (Younger Dryas and Heinrich events suggest that denitrification was inactive or weak during Pleistocene cold phases, while warm interstadials (ISs had elevated δ15N. Fast changes in upwelling intensities and OMZ ventilation from the Antarctic were responsible for these strong millennial-scale variations during the glacial. During the entire Holocene δ15N values  >  6 ‰ indicate a relatively stable OMZ with enhanced denitrification. The OMZ develops parallel to the strengthening of the SW monsoon and monsoonal upwelling after the LGM. Despite the relatively stable climatic conditions of the Holocene, the δ15N records show regionally different trends in the Arabian Sea. In the upwelling areas in the western part of the basin, δ15N values are lower during the mid-Holocene (4.2–8.2 ka BP compared to the late Holocene ( <  4.2 ka BP due to stronger ventilation of the OMZ during the period of the most intense southwest monsoonal upwelling. In contrast, δ15N values in the northern and eastern Arabian Sea rose during the last 8 kyr. The displacement of the core of the OMZ from the region of maximum productivity in the western Arabian Sea to its present position

  18. Multi-Decadal to Millennial Scale Holocene Hydrologic Variation in the Southern Hemisphere Tropics of South America (United States)

    Ekdahl, E. J.; Fritz, S. C.; Baker, P. A.; Burns, S. J.; Coley, K.; Rigsby, C. A.


    Numerous sites in the Northern Hemisphere show multi-decadal to millennial scale climate variation during the Holocene, many of which have been correlated with changes in atmospheric radiocarbon production or with changes in North Atlantic oceanic circulation. The manifestation of such climate variability in the hydrology of the Southern Hemisphere tropics of South America is unclear, because of the limited number of records at suitably high resolution. In the Lake Titicaca drainage basin of Bolivia and Peru, high-resolution lacustrine records reveal the overall pattern of Holocene lake-level change, the influence of precessional forcing of the South American Summer Monsoon, and the effects of high-frequency climate variability in records of lake productivity and lake ecology. Precessional forcing of regional precipitation is evident in the Lake Titicaca basin as a massive (ca. 85 m) mid-Holocene decline in lake level beginning about 7800 cal yr BP and a subsequent rise in lake level after 4000 cal yr BP. Here we show that multi-decadal to millennial-scale climate variability, superimposed upon the envelope of change at orbital time scales, is similar in timing and pattern to the ice-rafted debris record of Holocene Bond events in the North Atlantic. A high-resolution carbon isotopic record from Lake Titicaca that spans the entire Holocene suggests that cold intervals of Holocene Bond events are periods of increased precipitation, thus indicating an anti-phasing of precipitation variation on the Altiplano relative to the Northern Hemisphere tropics. A similar pattern of variation is also evident in high-resolution (2-30 yr spacing) diatom and geochemical records that span the last 7000 yr from two smaller lakes, Lagos Umayo and Lagunillas, in the Lake Titicaca drainage basin.

  19. Dendro-chronological analysis of fossilised wood in order to reconstruct the post-ice-age history of glaciers; Dendrochronologische Auswertung fossiler Hoelzer zur Rekonstruktion der nacheiszeitlichen Gletschergeschichte

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holzhauser, H.


    Around the middle of the 19th century, alpine glaciers advanced to their last maximum extension within the Holocene (the last 11'600 years). Some of the glaciers, especially the Great Aletsch and Gorner, penetrated deeply into wooded land and destroyed numerous trees. Not only were trees destroyed but also valuable arable farmland, alpine farm buildings and dwelling houses. Since the last maximum extension in the 19th century the retreat of the glaciers has accelerated revealing, within the glacier forefields, the remainders of trees once buried. Some of this fossil wood is found in the place where it grew (in situ). Often the wood dates back to a time before the last glacier advance, most of it is several thousands of years old because glacial advance and retreat periods occurred repeatedly within the Holocene. This paper shows the characteristics of fossil wood and how it can be analysed to reconstruct glacial history. It will be demonstrated how glacier length variation can be exactly reconstructed with help of dendrochronology. Thanks to the very exact reconstruction of the glacier length change during the advance periods in the 14th and 16th centuries, the velocities of both the Gorner and Great Aletsch glaciers can be estimated. They range between 7-8 and 20 m per year, in the case of the Gorner glacier, and between 7-8 and 36 m per year, in the case of the Great Aletsch glacier. (author)

  20. Insights into mercury deposition and spatiotemporal variation in the glacier and melt water from the central Tibetan Plateau. (United States)

    Paudyal, Rukumesh; Kang, Shichang; Huang, Jie; Tripathee, Lekhendra; Zhang, Qianggong; Li, Xiaofei; Guo, Junming; Sun, Shiwei; He, Xiaobo; Sillanpää, Mika


    Long-term monitoring of global pollutant such as Mercury (Hg) in the cryosphere is very essential for understanding its bio-geochemical cycling and impacts in the pristine environment with limited emission sources. Therefore, from May 2015 to Oct 2015, surface snow and snow-pits from Xiao Dongkemadi Glacier and glacier melt water were sampled along an elevation transect from 5410 to 5678m a.s.l. in the central Tibetan Plateau (TP). The concentration of Hg in surface snow was observed to be higher than that from other parts of the TP. Unlike the southern parts of the TP, no clear altitudinal variation was observed in the central TP. The peak Total Hg (Hg T ) concentration over the vertical profile on the snow pits corresponded with a distinct yellowish-brown dust layer supporting the fact that most of the Hg was associated with particulate matter. It was observed that only 34% of Hg in snow was lost when the surface snow was exposed to sunlight indicating that the surface snow is less influenced by the post-depositional process. Significant diurnal variation of Hg T concentration was observed in the river water, with highest concentration observed at 7pm when the discharge was highest and lowest concentration during 7-8am when the discharge was lowest. Such results suggest that the rate of discharge was influential in the concentration of Hg T in the glacier fed rivers of the TP. The estimated export of Hg T from Dongkemadi river basin is 747.43gyr -1 , which is quite high compared to other glaciers in the TP. Therefore, the export of global contaminant Hg might play enhanced role in the Alpine regions as these glaciers are retreating at an alarming rate under global warming which may have adverse impact on the ecosystem and the human health of the region. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Glaciers of Europe (United States)

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.


    supraglacial morainic debris and crevasses. The maps are revised every 6 years by use of aerial photogrammetric methods. The possibility of producing a glacier inventory by combining the topographic maps with Landsat digital and visual data is discussed. ALPS: FRENCH: The glaciers of the French Alps are distributed in four main groups and have a total area of 350 square kilometers. The northernmost group, on the Mont Blanc massif, has a glacier area of 110 square kilometers, which includes Met de Glace, which, with an area of 40 square kilometers, is the largest glacier in the Western Alps. Farther south, the Massif de la Vanoise contains 130 glaciers that have a total area of 85 square kilometers. The glaciers of the Grandes Rousses massif have a total area of 11 square kilometers. Lastly, the Massif du Pelvoux has a total glacier area of 120 square kilometers. Studies of glacier variations since 1600 A.D. have shown numerous fluctuations in glacier length. The glaciers on Mont Blanc that appear to show similar fluctuations in fact have different individual response times. Mass-balance measurements are presently being carried out on nine glaciers. The measurements on one of these glaciers, Glacier de Saint Sorlin, have been used to validate a linear statistical model for mass-balance variation. The model seems to give good results when extended over the entire region of French Alpine glaciers. New methods of mass-balance reconstructions by use of a continuity equation are discussed. Current satellite data have limited usefulness for glacier studies in the French Alps, with the exception of the method correlating changes in the elevation of snowline to changes in glacier mass balance. ALPS: ITALIAN: Research carried out by Italian glaciologists in support of the World Glacier Inventory project identified approximately 1,400 glaciers in the mountain groups of the Italian Alps. The total surface area of all glaciers, glacierets, and permanent snow fields in Italy with

  2. Monitoring glacier variations in the Urubamba and Vilcabamba Mountain Ranges, Peru, using "Landsat 5" images (United States)

    Suarez, Wilson; Cerna, Marcos; Ordoñez, Julio; Frey, Holger; Giráldez, Claudia; Huggel, Christian


    The Urubamba and Vilcabamba mountain ranges are two geological structures belonging to the Andes in the southern part of Peru, which is located in the tropical region. These mountain ranges are especially located within the transition area between the Amazon region (altitudes close to 1'000 m a.s.l.) and the Andes. These mountains, with a maximum height of 6'280 m a.s.l. (Salkantay Snow Peak in the Vilcabamba range), are characterized by glaciers mainly higher than 5000 m a.s.l. Here we present a study on the evolution of the ice cover based on "Landsat 5" images from 1991 and 2011 is presented in this paper. These data are freely available from the USGS in a georeferenced format and cover a time span of more than 25 years. The glacier mapping is based on the Normalized Difference Snow Index (NDSI). In 1991 the Vilcabamba mountain range had 221 km2 of glacier cover, being reduced to 116.4 km2 in 2011, which represents a loss of 48%. In the Urubamba mountain range, the total glacier area was 64.9 km2 in 1991 and 29.4 km2 in 2011, representing a loss of 54.7%. It means that the glacier area was halved during the past two decades although precipitation patterns show an increase in recent years (the wet season lasts from September to April with precipitation peaks in February and March). Glacier changes in these two tropical mountain ranges also impact from an economic point of view due to small local farming common in this region (use of water from the melting glacier). Furthermore, potential glacier related hazards can pose a threat to people and infrastructure in the valleys below these glaciers, where the access routes to Machu Picchu Inca City, Peru's main tourist destination, are located too.

  3. Spatial variations and sources of trace elements in recent snow from glaciers at the Tibetan Plateau. (United States)

    Huang, Ju; Li, Yuefang; Li, Zhen; Xiong, Longfei


    Trace elements (TEs) could pose a potential threat to the environment and human health and hence they have been paid attention increasingly at present. This study presents the acid-leached concentrations of TEs (e.g., Al, As, Ba, Co, Cr, Cs, Cu, Fe, Li, Mn, Mo, Pb, Rb, Sb, Sr, Ti, Tl, U, V) and dust content sampled from Qiumianleike (QMLK), Meikuang (MK), Yuzhufeng (YZF), Xiaodongkemadi (XDKMD), Gurenhekou (GRHK) glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau (TP) from April to May in 2013. A nonparametric Jonckheere-Terpstra Method was used to test the trend of spatial distribution of TEs. The statistical analysis indicates that TEs were the highest in the QMLK glacier, lowest in the YZF glacier, and comparable in the other three glaciers. Comparison with other glaciers of the plateau, the statistical analysis on As, Cu, Mo, Pb, and Sb shows that their concentrations had, in general, a decreasing distribution characteristic from the north to the south of TP, which indicates that the northern TP is loading more atmospheric-polluted impurity than central and southern TP. Enrichment factor (EF) analysis indicates that Rb, V, U, Cr, Ba, Cs, Li, As, Co, Mn, Tl, Sr, and Cu originated mainly from crustal dust, while anthropogenic inputs such as nonferrous metals melting, coal combustion, and traffic emission made an important contribution to the Mo, Pb, and Sb. Evidences from air mass back trajectories show that TEs in the five studied glaciers might not only come from surrounding areas of glaciers but also might be long-range transported by atmosphere from the Central Asia and South Asia and deposited on these glaciers.

  4. Fluvial Responses to Holocene sea Level Variations Along the Macdonald River, New South Wales, Australia (United States)

    Rustomji, P.; Chappell, J.; Olley, J.


    The Macdonald River drains the rugged eastern flanks of Australia's Great Dividing Range. It has a catchment area of 2000km2, restricted alluvial lowlands confined by bedrock interfluves and flows into the Hawkesbury River, a larger estuarine valley. The Macdonald valley is presently tidal for 14km from the Hawkesbury. At about 8000 year before present (BP), rising sea level invaded the Macdonald Valley for at least 35km upstream of the Hawkesbury River. Rapid aggradation occurred between 8000 and 6000 years BP and a sand bed river was established in the Macdonald Valley, its mouth prograding rapidly towards the Hawkesbury. Little is known about the character of the sand bed river during the +2 meter sea level highstand occurring between 5000 and 4000 BP. However, from 3000 to 1500 BP when sea level was consistently at +1 to +1.5m, major floodplain and levee-like structures, now virtually inactive, were established. The bed is inferred to have been elevated above its present day level and consequently intersected mean sea level (MSL) downstream of its present location. This is consistent with reported sea levels at +1 to +2m above present levels for the New South Wales coast at this time. From 1500 years BP, local sea level fell rapidly to its present level. Aggradation of the levee crests ceased and sedimentation along the valley became restricted to aggradation of an inset floodplain, within the pre-1500 BP deposits. The channel contracted and the sandy river bed incised. An equivalent and synchronous change in sedimentation style is observed along the Tuross River 400km south of the Macdonald, lending support to sea level variations being the factor driving this change. By 1850 AD, the bed dipped below MSL about 10km upstream of its inferred position prior to 1500 years BP. A series of large floods between 1949 and 1955 eroded significant volumes of sandy sediment from the Holocene deposits. The channel bed widened from between 25 and 50m width to ˜100m along

  5. Seasonal variation and light absorption property of carbonaceous aerosol in a typical glacier region of the southeastern Tibetan Plateau (United States)

    Niu, Hewen; Kang, Shichang; Wang, Hailong; Zhang, Rudong; Lu, Xixi; Qian, Yun; Paudyal, Rukumesh; Wang, Shijin; Shi, Xiaofei; Yan, Xingguo


    Deposition and accumulation of light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosol on glacier surfaces can alter the energy balance of glaciers. In this study, 2 years (December 2014 to December 2016) of continuous observations of carbonaceous aerosols in the glacierized region of the Mt. Yulong and Ganhaizi (GHZ) basin are analyzed. The average elemental carbon (EC) and organic carbon (OC) concentrations were 1.51±0.93 and 2.57±1.32 µg m-3, respectively. Although the annual mean OC / EC ratio was 2.45±1.96, monthly mean EC concentrations during the post-monsoon season were even higher than OC in the high altitudes (approximately 5000 m a. s. l. ) of Mt. Yulong. Strong photochemical reactions and local tourism activities were likely the main factors inducing high OC / EC ratios in the Mt. Yulong region during the monsoon season. The mean mass absorption efficiency (MAE) of EC, measured for the first time in Mt. Yulong, at 632 nm with a thermal-optical carbon analyzer using the filter-based method, was 6.82±0.73 m2 g-1, comparable with the results from other studies. Strong seasonal and spatial variations of EC MAE were largely related to the OC abundance. Source attribution analysis using a global aerosol-climate model, equipped with a black carbon (BC) source tagging technique, suggests that East Asia emissions, including local sources, have the dominant contribution (over 50 %) to annual mean near-surface BC in the Mt. Yulong area. There is also a strong seasonal variation in the regional source apportionment. South Asia has the largest contribution to near-surface BC during the pre-monsoon season, while East Asia dominates the monsoon season and post-monsoon season. Results in this study have great implications for accurately evaluating the influences of carbonaceous matter on glacial melting and water resource supply in glacierization areas.

  6. Seasonal variation of ice melting on varying layers of debris of Lirung Glacier, Langtang Valley, Nepal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. B. Chand


    Full Text Available Glaciers in the Himalayan region are often covered by extensive debris cover in ablation areas, hence it is essential to assess the effect of debris on glacier ice melt. Seasonal melting of ice beneath different thicknesses of debris on Lirung Glacier in Langtang Valley, Nepal, was studied during three seasons of 2013–14. The melting rates of ice under 5 cm debris thickness are 3.52, 0.09, and 0.85 cm d−1 during the monsoon, winter and pre-monsoon season, respectively. Maximum melting is observed in dirty ice (0.3 cm debris thickness and the rate decreases with the increase of debris thickness. The energy balance calculations on dirty ice and at 40 cm debris thickness show that the main energy source of ablation is net radiation. The major finding from this study is that the maximum melting occurs during the monsoon season than rest of the seasons.

  7. Rapid shift and millennial-scale variations in Holocene North Pacific Intermediate Water ventilation. (United States)

    Lembke-Jene, Lester; Tiedemann, Ralf; Nürnberg, Dirk; Gong, Xun; Lohmann, Gerrit


    The Pacific hosts the largest oxygen minimum zones (OMZs) in the world ocean, which are thought to intensify and expand under future climate change, with significant consequences for marine ecosystems, biogeochemical cycles, and fisheries. At present, no deep ventilation occurs in the North Pacific due to a persistent halocline, but relatively better-oxygenated subsurface North Pacific Intermediate Water (NPIW) mitigates OMZ development in lower latitudes. Over the past decades, instrumental data show decreasing oxygenation in NPIW; however, long-term variations in middepth ventilation are potentially large, obscuring anthropogenic influences against millennial-scale natural background shifts. Here, we use paleoceanographic proxy evidence from the Okhotsk Sea, the foremost North Pacific ventilation region, to show that its modern oxygenated pattern is a relatively recent feature, with little to no ventilation before six thousand years ago, constituting an apparent Early-Middle Holocene (EMH) threshold or "tipping point." Complementary paleomodeling results likewise indicate a warmer, saltier EMH NPIW, different from its modern conditions. During the EMH, the Okhotsk Sea switched from a modern oxygenation source to a sink, through a combination of sea ice loss, higher water temperatures, and remineralization rates, inhibiting ventilation. We estimate a strongly decreased EMH NPIW oxygenation of ∼30 to 50%, and increased middepth Pacific nutrient concentrations and carbon storage. Our results ( i ) imply that under past or future warmer-than-present conditions, oceanic biogeochemical feedback mechanisms may change or even switch direction, and ( ii ) provide constraints on the high-latitude North Pacific's influence on mesopelagic ventilation dynamics, with consequences for large oceanic regions. Copyright © 2018 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  8. Quantitative estimation of Holocene surface salinity variation in the Black Sea using dinoflagellate cyst process length

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mertens, Kenneth Neil; Bradley, Lee R.; Takano, Yoshihito


    Reconstruction of salinity in the Holocene Black Sea has been an ongoing debate over the past four decades. Here we calibrate summer surface water salinity in the Black Sea, Sea of Azov and Caspian Sea with the process length of the dinoflagellate cyst Lingulodinium machaerophorum. We then apply ...

  9. Holocene relative sea level variations at the spit system Feddet (Denmark) resolved by ground-penetrating radar and geomorphological data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hede, Mikkel Ulfeldt; Bendixen, Mette; Clemmensen, Lars B

    Estimates of Holocene sea-level variations have been presented in a range of studies based on different approaches, including interpretation of internal beach ridge characteristics from ground-penetrating radar (GPR) and geomorphological data. We present GPR data and geomorphological observations...... of independent GPR and geomorphologic data collected across the recent and sub-recent beach ridge deposits. The data analyses include coastal topography, internal dips of beach ridge layers, and sea-level measurements. A clear change in characteristic layer dip is observed between beach face and upper shoreface...

  10. Reconstructing Holocene hematite and goethite variations in the Indus Canyon to trace changes in the Asian monsoon system (United States)

    Koehler, Cornelia; Clift, Peter; Pressling, Nicola; Limmer, David; Giosan, Liviu; Tabrez, Ali


    In order to study Holocene Asian monsoon variations, we reconstructed changes in chemical weathering by examining sediments from the Indus Canyon. During the late Holocene, the Asian monsoon system had periods of high and low intensities that influenced the civilisations living in its realm. For example, the demise of the Harappan civilisation has been linked to a weakened monsoon system around 4 ka. The sediments in the Indus Canyon, which originate from the River Indus and its Himalayan tributaries, provide an ideal, natural environmental archive of the South Asian monsoon system. In order to investigate the alternation between arid and humid monsoonal climatic conditions, variations are traced using the magnetic minerals hematite and goethite, which form under distinct environmental conditions: goethite is stable under humid conditions, whereas hematite forms from the dehydration of goethite under arid conditions. The two minerals are characterised and quantified using environmental magnetic measurements, as well as diffuse reflectance spectrometry. Combining both approaches will enable us to reconstruct variations in chemical weathering over time. Furthermore, because this is governed by temperature and the availability of moisture, our weathering record will allow us to understand monsoon variability during the Holocene and test whether summer rain intensity has been decreasing in SW Asia since 8 ka. In addition, the multi-component analysis of colour reflectance spectra identifies different mineral components including hematite/goethite, clay mineral mixtures, calcite and organics. We will present our results from the multi-sensor core logger equipped with a Minolta spectrometer, measuring both magnetic susceptibility and the optical properties of the split sediment cores. Initial results indicate the presence of hematite and goethite in the sediment. There is an increasing hematite content up the cores, indicating an aridification trend during the Holocene

  11. Seasonal variation and light absorption property of carbonaceous aerosol in a typical glacier region of the southeastern Tibetan Plateau

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Niu


    Full Text Available Deposition and accumulation of light-absorbing carbonaceous aerosol on glacier surfaces can alter the energy balance of glaciers. In this study, 2 years (December 2014 to December 2016 of continuous observations of carbonaceous aerosols in the glacierized region of the Mt. Yulong and Ganhaizi (GHZ basin are analyzed. The average elemental carbon (EC and organic carbon (OC concentrations were 1.51±0.93 and 2.57±1.32 µg m−3, respectively. Although the annual mean OC ∕ EC ratio was 2.45±1.96, monthly mean EC concentrations during the post-monsoon season were even higher than OC in the high altitudes (approximately 5000 m a. s. l.  of Mt. Yulong. Strong photochemical reactions and local tourism activities were likely the main factors inducing high OC ∕ EC ratios in the Mt. Yulong region during the monsoon season. The mean mass absorption efficiency (MAE of EC, measured for the first time in Mt. Yulong, at 632 nm with a thermal-optical carbon analyzer using the filter-based method, was 6.82±0.73 m2 g−1, comparable with the results from other studies. Strong seasonal and spatial variations of EC MAE were largely related to the OC abundance. Source attribution analysis using a global aerosol–climate model, equipped with a black carbon (BC source tagging technique, suggests that East Asia emissions, including local sources, have the dominant contribution (over 50 % to annual mean near-surface BC in the Mt. Yulong area. There is also a strong seasonal variation in the regional source apportionment. South Asia has the largest contribution to near-surface BC during the pre-monsoon season, while East Asia dominates the monsoon season and post-monsoon season. Results in this study have great implications for accurately evaluating the influences of carbonaceous matter on glacial melting and water resource supply in glacierization areas.

  12. Ice Velocity Variations of the Polar Record Glacier (East Antarctica Using a Rotation-Invariant Feature-Tracking Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tingting Liu


    Full Text Available In this study, the ice velocity changes from 2004 to 2015 of the Polar Record Glacier (PRG in East Antarctica were investigated based on a feature-tracking method using Landsat-7 enhanced thematic mapper plus (ETM+ and Landsat-8 operational land imager (OLI images. The flow field of the PRG curves make it difficult to generate ice velocities in some areas using the traditional normalized cross-correlation (NCC-based feature-tracking method. Therefore, a rotation-invariant parameter from scale-invariant feature transform (SIFT is introduced to build a novel rotation-invariant feature-tracking approach. The validation was performed based on multi-source images and the making earth system data records for use in research environments (MEaSUREs interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR-based Antarctica ice velocity map data set. The results indicate that the proposed method is able to measure the ice velocity in more areas and performs as well as the traditional NCC-based feature-tracking method. The sequential ice velocities obtained present the variations in the PRG during this period. Although the maximum ice velocity of the frontal margin of the PRG and the frontal iceberg reached about 900 m/a and 1000 m/a, respectively, the trend from 2004 to 2015 showed no significant change. Under the interaction of the Polar Times Glacier and the Polarforschung Glacier, both the direction and the displacement of the PRG were influenced. This impact also led to higher velocities in the western areas of the PRG than in the eastern areas. In addition, elevation changes and frontal iceberg calving also impacted the ice velocity of the PRG.

  13. Holocene paleoclimatic variation in the Schirmacher Oasis, East Antarctica: A mineral magnetic approach (United States)

    Phartiyal, Binita


    An analysis of remanent magnetism and radiocarbon ages in the dry lacustrine/sediment fills of the Schirmacher Oasis (SO) in East Antarctica was conducted to reconstruct past climatic condition. The statistically run mineral magnetic data on paleontological statistics software package (multivariate cluster analysis) placed on accelerator mass spectrometer radiocarbon chronology of the three sediment sections, trace 6 phases of climatic fluctuation between 13 and 3 ka, (Phases 1, 3 and 5 represent cold periods while Phases 2, 4, and 6 represent warm periods). One short warm period (Phase 2, ca. 12.5 ka) occurred in the late Pleistocene, and two marked warm periods (Phase 4, 11-8.7 ka; Phase 6, 4.4-3 ka) occurred in the Holocene. High magnetic susceptibility (χ), saturation isothermal remanent magnetism (SIRM), and soft isothermal remanent magnetism (soft IRM) values correspond to colder periods and low values reflect comparatively warmer lacustrine phases. Holocene Optima (Phase 4) and Mid Holocene Hypsithermal (Phase 6) are distinguished by decreased values of concentrations dependent parameters. Remanence is preserved in the low-coercive minerals. Heavy metals in the sediments include, Fe, Rb, Zn, Mo, Co, Pb, Mn, Cu, and As in order of decreasing abundance.

  14. Observed periodicities and the spectrum of field variations in Holocene magnetic records

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Panovska, S.; Finlay, Chris; Hirt, A.M.


    , globally observed, periods. Rather we find a continuous broadband spectrum, with a slope corresponding to a power law with exponent of -2.3 ± 0.6 for the period range between 300 and 4000 yr. This is consistent with the hypothesis that chaotic convection in the outer core drives the majority of secular......In order to understand mechanisms that maintain and drive the evolution of the Earth's magnetic field, a characterization of its behavior on time scales of centuries to millennia is required. We have conducted a search for periodicities in Holocene sediment magnetic records, by applying three...

  15. Variations in the Strength of the North Atlantic Bottom water during Holocene. (United States)

    Kissel, C.; Van Toer, A.; Michel, E.; Cortijo, E.


    One aspect of the Past4Future project is to combine multidisciplinary approaches to monitor changes in ocean circulation during previous interglacial periods. In the framework of this project, our study focusses on the changes in the strength of the North Atlantic deep water during the Holocene period using multiproxy analysis (magnetic and sedimentary). The main part of the study has been conducted on two cores located at the western termination of the northern deep channel of the Charlie-Gibbs fracture zone. This natural E-W corridor is bathed by the Iceland-Scotland overflow water (ISOW) when it passes westward out of the Iceland Basin into the western North Atlantic basin. At present, it is also described as the place where southern sourced silicate-rich Lower Deep Water (LDW) derived from the Antarctic Bottom Waters (AABW) are passing westward, mixing with the ISOW. One core had been taken by the R. V. Charcot in 1977 and the second one is a CASQ core taken during the IMAGES-AMOCINT MD168- cruise in the framework of the 06-EuroMARC-FP-008 Project on board the R.V. Marion Dufresne (French Polar Institute, IPEV) in 2008. Radiocarbon ages indicate an average sedimentation rate of about 90 cm/kyr during early Holocene and 50 cm/kyr through middle and late Holocene allowing a data resolution ranging from 40 to 100 years depending on the proxy. We coupled magnetic properties, anisotropy, sortable silt and benthic foraminifera isotopes. On the long term, a decrease in the amount of magnetic particles (normalized by the carbonate content) is first observed from 10 kyr to 8.6 kyr and then from 6 to 2 kyrs before reaching a steady state during the last two millenia. Following Kissel et al. (2009), this indicates a two steps decrease in the ISOW strength. The mean sortable silt shows exactly the same pattern indicating that not only the intensity of the ISOW but the whole deep water mass bathing the sites has decreased. On the short term, a first very prominent event

  16. Variations in the Holocene North Atlantic Bottom Current Strength in the Charlie Gibbs Fracture Zone (United States)

    Kissel, C.; Van Toer, A.; Cortijo, E.; Turon, J.


    The changes in the strength of the North Atlantic bottom current during the Holocene period is presented via the study of cores located at the western termination of the northern deep channel of the Charlie-Gibbs fracture zone. This natural roughly E-W corridor is bathed by the Iceland-Scotland overflow water (ISOW) when it passes westward out of the Iceland Basin into the western North Atlantic basin. At present, it is also described as the place where southern sourced silicate-rich Lower Deep Water (LDW) derived from the Antarctic Bottom Waters (AABW) are passing westward, mixing with the ISOW. We conducted a deep-water multiproxy analysis on two nearby cores, coupling magnetic properties, anisotropy, sortable silt and benthic foraminifera isotopes. The first core had been taken by the R. V. Charcot in 1977 and the second one is a CASQ core taken during the IMAGES-AMOCINT MD168- cruise in the framework of the 06-EuroMARC-FP-008 Project on board the R.V. Marion Dufresne (French Polar Institute, IPEV) in 2008. The radiocarbon ages indicate an average sedimentation rate of about 50 cm/kyr through middle and late Holocene allowing a data resolution ranging from 40 to 100 years depending on the proxy. In each core, we observe long-term and short-term changes in the strength of the bottom currents. On the long term, a decrease in the amount of magnetic particles (normalized by the carbonate content) is first from 10 kyr to 8.6 kyr and then between 6 and 2 kyrs before reaching a steady state. Following Kissel et al. (2009), this indicates a decrease in the ISOW strength. The mean sortable silt shows exactly the same pattern indicating that not only the intensity of the ISOW but the whole deep water mass bathing the sites has decreased. On the short term, a first very prominent event centered at about 8.4 kyr (cal. ages) is marked by a pronounced minima in magnetic content and the smaller mean sortable silt sizes. This is typical for an abrupt reduction in deep flow

  17. Late Holocene variations in Pacific surface circulation and biogeochemistry inferred from proteinaceous deep-sea corals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. P. Guilderson


    Full Text Available δ15N and δ13C data obtained from samples of proteinaceous deep-sea corals collected from the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre (Hawaiian Archipelago and the central equatorial Pacific (Line Islands document multidecadal to century-scale variability in the isotopic composition of surface-produced particulate organic matter exported to the deep sea. Comparison of the δ13C data, where Line Islands samples are 0.6‰ more positive than the Hawaiian samples, supports the contention that the North Pacific Subtropical Gyre is more efficient than the tropical upwelling system at trapping and/or recycling nutrients within the mixed layer. δ15N values from the Line Islands samples are also more positive than those from the central gyre, and within the Hawaiian samples there is a gradient with more positive δ15N values in samples from the main Hawaiian Islands versus the French Frigate Shoals in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands. The gradient in the Hawaiian samples likely reflects the relative importance of algal acquisition of metabolic N via dissolved seawater nitrate uptake versus nitrogen fixation. The Hawaiian sample set also exhibits a strong decrease in δ15N values from the mid-Holocene to present. We hypothesize that this decrease is most likely the result of decreasing trade winds, and possibly a commensurate decrease in entrainment of more positive δ15N-NO3 subthermocline water masses.

  18. Holocene moisture variations over the arid central Asia revealed by a comprehensive sand-dune record from the central Tian Shan, NW China (United States)

    Long, Hao; Shen, Ji; Chen, Jianhui; Tsukamoto, Sumiko; Yang, Linhai; Cheng, Hongyi; Frechen, Manfred


    Arid central Asia (ACA) is one of the largest arid (desert) areas in the world, and its climate is dominated by the westerlies. In this study, we examined sand dune evolution from the Bayanbulak Basin in the Tian Shan (Xinjiang, NW China), aiming to infer the Holocene moisture history of the ACA. Combined with stratigraphic observation and environmental proxies analysis (grain size, magnetic susceptibility and total organic content), large numbers of luminescence ages from multiple sites (eight sections, 79 samples) were applied to reconstruct the evolution of the sand dune accumulation in the study basin. The overall results imply very dry conditions characterized by sand dune accumulation at ∼12-6.5 ka, a wet interval between ∼6.5 and 0.8 ka when soil formation occurred, and decreased moisture during the last 0.8 ka. This moisture variation pattern is generally consistent with that inferred from many lacustrine records in the core zone of ACA, suggesting a widespread dry period in the early-to-middle Holocene and relatively wet middle-to-late Holocene. Thus, the moisture history derived from the current sand dune system contrasts with that in Asian monsoon areas, which are characterized by a strong monsoon (high precipitation) in the early and mid-Holocene and a weak monsoon (low precipitation and dry climate) during the late Holocene. Our results strongly suggest that the winter solar insolation and the external boundary conditions such as atmospheric CO2 concentration, ice sheets, and meltwater fluxes, have been major influential factors triggering the Holocene moisture evolution in the core zone of ACA.

  19. Surface and thickness variations of Brenva Glacier tongue (Mont Blanc, Italian Alps) in the second half of the 20th century by historical maps and aerial photogrammetry comparisons (United States)

    D Agata, C.; Zanutta, A.; Muzzu Martis, D.; Mancini, F.; Smiraglia, C.


    Aim of this contribution is the evaluation of volumetric and surface variations of Brenva Glacier (Mont Blanc, Italian Alps) during the second half of the 20th century, by GIS-based processing of maps and aerial photogrammetry technique. Brenva Glacier is a typical debris covered glacier, located in a valley on the S-E side of the Mont Blanc. The glacier covers a surface of 7 kmq and shows a length of 7,6 km at maximum. The glacier snout reaches 1415 m a.s.l., which is the lowest glacier terminus of the Italian Alps. To evaluate glacier variations different historical maps were used: 1) The 1959 Map, at the scale 1:5.000, by EIRA (Ente Italiano Rilievi Aerofotogrammetrici, Firenze), from terrestrial photogrammetric survey, published in the Bollettino del Comitato Glaciologico Italiano, 2, n. 19, 1971. 2) The 1971 Map, at the scale 1:5.000, from aerial photogrammetry (Alifoto, Torino) published in the Bollettino del Comitato Glaciologico Italiano, 2, n. 20, 1972. 3) The 1988 Map, at the scale 1:10.000, (Region Aosta Valley, Regional Technical Map) from 1983 aerial photogrammetric survey. 4) The 1999 Map, at the scale 1:10.000, (Region Aosta Valley, Regional Technical Map) from 1991 aerial photogrammetry survey. For the same purpose the following aereal photographs were used: 1) The 1975 image, CGR (Italian General Company aerial Surveys) flight RAVDA (Administrative Autonomous Region Aosta Valley), at the scale 1:17.000. 2) The 1991 image, CGR (Italian General Company aerial Surveys) flight RAVDA (Administrative Autonomous Region Aosta Valley), at the scale 1:17.000. Aerial imageries have been acquired over a long period from 1975 to 1991. The black and white images were scanned at suitable resolution if compared with the imagery scale and several models, representing the glacier tongue area, oriented using the inner and outer orientation parameters delivered with the images, were produced. The digital photogrammetric system, after orientation and matching, produces

  20. Recurrent Holocene movement on the Susitna Glacier Thrust Fault: The structure that initiated the Mw 7.9 Denali Fault earthquake, central Alaska (United States)

    Personius, Stephen; Crone, Anthony J.; Burns, Patricia A.; Reitman, Nadine G.


    We conducted a trench investigation and analyzed pre‐ and postearthquake topography to determine the timing and size of prehistoric surface ruptures on the Susitna Glacier fault (SGF), the thrust fault that initiated the 2002 Mw 7.9 Denali fault earthquake sequence in central Alaska. In two of our three hand‐excavated trenches, we found clear evidence for a single pre‐2002 earthquake (penultimate earthquake [PE]) and determined an age of 2210±420  cal. B.P. (2σ) for this event. We used structure‐from‐motion software to create a pre‐2002‐earthquake digital surface model (DSM) from 1:62,800‐scale aerial photography taken in 1980 and compared this DSM with postearthquake 5‐m/pixel Interferometric Synthetic Aperature Radar topography taken in 2010. Topographic profiles measured from the pre‐earthquake DSM show features that we interpret as fault and fold scarps. These landforms were about the same size as those formed in 2002, so we infer that the PE was similar in size to the initial (Mw 7.2) subevent of the 2002 sequence. A recurrence interval of 2270 yrs and dip slip of ∼4.8  m yield a single‐interval slip rate of ∼1.8  mm/yr. The lack of evidence for pre‐PE deformation indicates probable episodic (clustering) behavior on the SGF that may be related to strain migration among other similarly oriented thrust faults that together accommodate shortening south of the Denali fault. We suspect that slip‐partitioned thrust‐triggered earthquakes may be a common occurrence on the Denali fault system, but documenting the frequency of such events will be very difficult, given the lack of long‐term paleoseismic records, the number of potential thrust‐earthquake sources, and the pervasive glacial erosion in the region.

  1. Evidences of climatic variations during Late Pleistocene- Holocene in the eastern Bay of Bengal

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chauhan, O.S; Borole, D.V.; Gujar, A; Mascarenhas, A; Mislankar, P.G.; Rao, Ch.M.

    Based upon the variations of clay minerals, sediment texture, heavy mineral assemblage and sup(230)Th excess in the Late Pleistocene sediments of a hemipelagic core from the eastern Bay of Bengal (2713 m water depth), 35 cm and 73-78 cm levels...

  2. Pleistocene-Holocene boundary in Southern Arabia from the perspective of human mtDNA variation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Al-Abri, A.-R.; Podgorná, E.; Rose, J. I.; Pereira, L.; Mulligan, C. J.; Silva, N. M.; Bayoumi, R.; Soares, P.; Černý, Viktor


    Roč. 149, č. 2 (2012), s. 291-298 ISSN 0002-9483 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ME 917 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z80020508 Keywords : mtDNA variation * Arabian Peninsula * migrations Subject RIV: AC - Archeology, Anthropology, Ethnology Impact factor: 2.481, year: 2012

  3. On the interpretation of millennium-scale level variations of the Black Sea during the first quarter of the Holocene (United States)

    Kislov, Alexander


    Introduction. During the first quarter of the Holocene, the Black Sea (BS) experienced large changes: amid the gradually rising water surface, Black Sea level (BSL) fluctuations occurred. We calculated based on records (e.g., Balabanov, 2007) that the standard deviation is ˜3.5 ÷ 5 m. Their typical duration was ˜1000 years. Time of occurrence of positive and negative anomalies of the BS is different in different reconstructions. The source of these discrepancies could be tectonically induced vertical motions. Before ˜7 ka BP the BSL was higher than the level of the World Ocean. The rising BS spilled over a rocky sill at the Bosphorus (Chepalyga, 2007). It is clear that if the water discharge were quite large, the long-term BSL anomalies could not be. This study focuses on the quantification of this concept. Methodology. I use the equation of the water balance of the BS in term of the annual averaged level anomalies. Time scales of the BSL fluctuations were determined based on the BS basin morphology and averaged volumes of rivers runoff and water discharge via the Bosphorus Sill. The short-term (1-2 year) contribution (like random white noise) to level changes are due to variations of river runoff and precipitation mines evaporation. From this perspective, the water balance equation is represented as a stochastic Langevin equation (Kislov, 2015). In another case, the BSL anomaly could be destructed due to relation "BSL anomaly - value of water discharge via the Bosphorus Sill" which acts as a negative feedback. Results. To quantify the parameters, I use the present day information about hydrological regime of the BS. It should not lead to serious errors, because the first and last quarters of the Holocene exhibit similarity in their hydroclimatic regimes (Panin, Matlakhova, 2014). As well, the paleohydrological data about dynamics of the Dnieper River runoff was used (Swetc, 1978). It was found that the time scale of the BSL fluctuations due to water discharge

  4. Late holocene primary productivity and sea surface temperature variations in the northeastern Arabian Sea: Implications for winter monsoon variability.

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Boll, A.; Luckge, A.; Munz, P.; Forke, S.; Schulz, H.; Ramaswamy, V.; Rixen, T.; Gaye, B.; Emeis, K.-C.

    changes in winter monsoon strength with winds from the northeast that drive convective mixing and high surface ocean productivity in the northeastern Arabian Sea. To establish a high-resolution record of winter monsoon variability for the late Holocene, we...

  5. Holocene variations of wildfire occurrence as a guide for sustainable management of the northeastern Canadian boreal forest

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    Ahmed El-Guellab


    Full Text Available Background Cumulative impacts of wildfires and forest harvesting can cause shifts from closed-crown forest to open woodland in boreal ecosystems. To lower the probability of occurrence of such catastrophic regime shifts, forest logging must decrease when fire frequency increases, so that the combined disturbance rate does not exceed the Holocene maximum. Knowing how climate warming will affect fire regimes is thus crucial to sustainably manage the forest. This study aimed to provide a guide to determine sustainable forest harvesting levels, by reconstructing the Holocene fire history at the northern limit of commercial forestry in Quebec using charcoal particles preserved in lake sediments. Methods Sediment cores were sampled from four lakes located close to the northern limit of commercial forestry in Quebec. The cores were sliced into consecutive 0.5 cm thick subsamples from which 1 cm3 was extracted to count and measure charcoal particles larger than 150 microns. Age-depth models were obtained for each core based on accelerator mass spectroscopy (AMS radiocarbon dates. Holocene fire histories were reconstructed by combining charcoal counts and age-depth models to obtain charcoal accumulation rates and, after statistical treatment, long-term trends in fire occurrence (expressed as number of fires per 1000 years. Results Fire occurrence varied between the four studied sites, but fires generally occurred more often during warm and dry periods of the Holocene, especially during the Holocene Thermal Maximum (7000–3500 cal. BP, when fire occurrence was twice as high as at present. Conclusions The current fire regime in the study area is still within the natural range of variability observed over the Holocene. However, climatic conditions comparable to the Holocene Thermal Maximum could be reached within the next few decades, thus substantially reducing the amount of wood available to the forest industry.

  6. Glacier mass variations from recent ITSG-Grace solutions: Experiences with the point-mass modeling technique in the framework of project SPICE. (United States)

    Reimond, S.; Klinger, B.; Krauss, S.; Mayer-Gürr, T.; Eicker, A.; Zemp, M.


    In recent years, remotely sensed observations have become one of the most ubiquitous and valuable sources of information for glacier monitoring. In addition to altimetry and interferometry data (as observed, e.g., by the CryoSat-2 and TanDEM-X satellites), time-variable gravity field data from the GRACE satellite mission has been used by several authors to assess mass changes in glacier systems. The main challenges in this context are i) the limited spatial resolution of GRACE, ii) the gravity signal attenuation in space and iii) the problem of isolating the glaciological signal from the gravitational signatures as detected by GRACE.In order to tackle the challenges i) and ii), we thoroughly investigate the point-mass modeling technique to represent the local gravity field. Instead of simply evaluating global spherical harmonics, we operate on the normal equation level and make use of GRACE K-band ranging data (available since April 2002) processed at the Graz University of Technology. Assessing such small-scale mass changes from space-borne gravimetric data is an ill-posed problem, which we aim to stabilize by utilizing a Genetic Algorithm based Tikhonov regularization. Concerning issue iii), we evaluate three different hydrology models (i.e. GLDAS, LSDM and WGHM) for validation purposes and the derivation of error bounds. The non-glaciological signal is calculated for each region of interest and reduced from the GRACE results.We present mass variations of several alpine glacier systems (e.g. the European Alps, Svalbard or Iceland) and compare our results to glaciological observations provided by the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) and alternative inversion methods (surface density modeling).

  7. Tropical Glaciers (United States)

    Fountain, Andrew

    The term "tropical glacier" calls to mind balmy nights and palm trees on one hand and cold, blue ice on the other. Certainly author Gabriel Garcia Marqez exploited this contrast in One Hundred Years of Solitude. We know that tropical fish live in warm, Sun-kissed waters and tropical plants provide lush, dense foliage populated by colorful tropical birds. So how do tropical glaciers fit into this scene? Like glaciers everywhere, tropical glaciers form where mass accumulation—usually winter snow—exceeds mass loss, which is generally summer melt. Thus, tropical glaciers exist at high elevations where precipitation can occur as snowfall exceeds melt and sublimation losses, such as the Rwenzori Mountains in east Africa and the Maoke Range of Irian Jaya.

  8. Variaciones glaciales durante el Holoceno en Patagonia Central, Aisén, Chile: evidencias geomorfológicas Holocene glacial variations in Central Patagonia, Aisén, Chile: geomorphological evidences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Mardones


    en la temperatura y precipitación atmosférica.During the Holocene, the patagonian glaciers were characterized by geomorphologically registered advances and retreats. This paper presents the geomorphological evolution and evidences of Holocene glacial advances within a segment in Central Patagonia Cordillera. This area will be used as a reference for studying the postglacial paleoclimatic evolution in the southernmost part of South America. The study area is the río Blanco basin (45°30'S, located in Central Patagonia (Aisén Region, Chile. Radiometric dating of organic sediments, within terminal moraines, provides preliminary data of two glacial advances. The first one is represented by the Lake Elizalde frontal moraine, which yielded a 14C age of 9.370±50 years BP (10,700 to 10,480 cal. yr BP. According to this chronological age, this glacial event took place in the Early Holocene. This glacial advance, being 100 to 200 years older than that observed immediately south of the study area, on the eastern edge of General Carrera Lake (or Buenos Aires Lake, in Argentina and approximately 100 years younger than the event recorded in the Puerto Banderas I moraine (Argentino Lake, 50°S. These results show that the behavior patterns of the Central Patagonia glaciers differ from that observed both in the Lake District (41°S, Chile and in the Magallanes District (54°S, Chile, where there are no traces of glacial readvancement recorded during the Early Holocene. After a major retreat to the west, a more recent glacial advance occurred in the Quetro river valley (a tributary river of the Blanco river, at an age prior to 2.250±40 BP (2.340 to 2.150 cal. yr BP, comparable to the cold stage of the Middle Neoglacial, interpreted to have occurred in different parts of Patagonia. Confronting these results with previously published pollen records, we postulate that the cause of both glacier fluctuations are regional variations in the atmospheric temperature and precipitations.

  9. Interpreting last glacial to Holocene dust changes at Talos Dome (East Antarctica: implications for atmospheric variations from regional to hemispheric scales

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    S. Albani


    Full Text Available Central East Antarctic ice cores preserve stratigraphic records of mineral dust originating from remote sources in the Southern Hemisphere, and represent useful indicators of climatic variations on glacial-interglacial time scales. The peripheries of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, where ice-free areas with the potential to emit dust exist, have been less explored from this point of view. Here, we present a new profile of dust deposition flux and grain size distributions from an ice core drilled at Talos Dome (TALDICE, Northern Victoria Land, East Antarctica, where there is a significant input of dust from proximal Antarctic ice-free areas. We analyze dust and stable water isotopes variations from the Last Glacial Maximum to the Late Holocene, and compare them to the EPICA Dome C profiles from central East Antarctica. The smaller glacial-interglacial variations at Talos Dome compared to Dome C and a distinctive decreasing trend during the Holocene characterize the TALDICE dust profile. By deciphering the composite dust signal from both remote and local sources, we show the potential of this combined proxy of source activity and atmospheric transport to give information on both regional and larger spatial scales. In particular, we show how a regional signal, which we relate to the deglaciation history of the Ross Sea embayment, can be superimposed to the broader scale glacial-interglacial variability that characterizes other Antarctic sites.

  10. Microbial communities of the Lemon Creek Glacier show subtle structural variation yet stable phylogenetic composition over space and time

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    Cody Springer Sheik


    Full Text Available Glaciers are geologically important yet transient ecosystems that support diverse, biogeochemically significant microbial communities. During the melt season glaciers undergo dramatic physical, geochemical and biological changes that exert great influence on downstream biogeochemical cycles. Thus, we sought to understand the temporal melt-season dynamics of microbial communities and associated geochemistry at the terminus of Lemon Creek Glacier (LCG in coastal southern Alaska. Due to late season snowfall, sampling of LCG occurred in three interconnected areas: proglacial Lake Thomas, the lower glacial outflow stream and the glacier’s terminus. LCG associated microbial communities were phylogenetically diverse and varied by sampling location. However, Betaproteobacteria, Alphaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes dominated communities at all sampling locations. Strict anaerobic groups such as methanogens, SR1, and OP11 were also recovered from glacier outflows, indicating anoxic conditions in at least some portions of the LCG subglacial environment. Microbial community structure was significantly correlated with sampling location and sodium concentrations. Microbial communities sampled from terminus outflow waters exhibited day-to-day fluctuation in taxonomy and phylogenetic similarity. However, these communities were not significantly different from randomly constructed communities from all three sites. These results indicate that glacial outflows share a large proportion of phylogenetic overlap with downstream environments and that the observed significant shifts in community structure are driven by changes in relative abundance of different taxa, and not complete restructuring of communities. We conclude that LCG glacial discharge hosts a diverse and relatively stable microbiome that shifts at fine taxonomic scales in response to geochemistry and likely water residence time.

  11. 10Be exposure dating of the timing of Neoglacial glacier advances in the Ecrins-Pelvoux massif, southern French Alps (United States)

    Le Roy, Melaine; Deline, Philip; Carcaillet, Julien; Schimmelpfennig, Irene; Ermini, Magali; Aster Team


    Alpine glacier variations are known to be reliable proxies of Holocene climate. Here, we present a terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide (TCN)-based glacier chronology relying on 24 new 10Be exposure ages, which constrain maximum Neoglacial positions of four small to mid-sized glaciers (Rateau, Lautaret, Bonnepierre and Etages) in the Ecrins-Pelvoux massif, southern French Alps. Glacier advances, marked by (mainly lateral) moraine ridges that are located slightly outboard of the Little Ice Age (LIA, c. 1250-1860 AD) maximum positions, were dated to 4.25 ± 0.44 ka, 3.66 ± 0.09 ka, 2.09 ± 0.10 ka, c. 1.31 ± 0.17 ka and to 0.92 ± 0.02 ka. The '4.2 ka advance', albeit constrained by rather scattered dates, is to our knowledge exposure-dated here for the first time in the Alps. It is considered as one of the first major Neoglacial advance in the western Alps, in agreement with other regional paleoclimatological proxies. We further review Alpine and Northern Hemisphere mid-to-high latitude evidence for climate change and glacier activity concomitant with the '4.2 ka event'. The '2.1 ka advance' was not extensively dated in the Alps and is thought to represent a prominent advance in early Roman times. Other Neoglacial advances dated here match the timing of previously described Alpine Neoglacial events. Our results also suggest that a Neoglacial maximum occurred at Etages Glacier 0.9 ka ago, i.e. during the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA, c. 850-1250 AD). At Rateau Glacier, discordant results are thought to reflect exhumation and snow cover of the shortest moraine boulders. Overall, this study highlights the need to combine several sites to develop robust Neoglacial glacier chronologies in order to take into account the variability in moraine deposition pattern and landform obliteration and conservation.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Galanin


    Full Text Available Based on remote mapping and field studies inGrand Rapids, Tumansky,Hasynsky,Del-Urechen Ridges as well as Dukchinsky and Kilgansky Mountain Massifs there were identified about 1160 landforms which morphologically are similar to the rock glaciers or they develop in close association with them. Besides tongue-shaped cirque rock glaciers originated due to ablation, a large number of lobate-shaped slope-associated rock glaciers were recognized. Significant quantity of such forms are developing within the active neotectonic areas, in zones of seismic-tectonic badland and in association with active earthquakes-controlling faults. Multiplication of regional data on volcanic-ash-chronology, lichenometry, Schmidt Hammer Test, pollen spectra and single radiocarbon data, most of the active rock glaciers were preliminary attributed to the Late Holocene.

  13. Indian monsoon variations during three contrasting climatic periods: the Holocene, Heinrich Stadial 2 and the last interglacial-glacial transition (United States)

    Zorzi, Coralie; Fernanda Sanchez Goñi, Maria; Anupama, Krishnamurthy; Prasad, Srinivasan; Hanquiez, Vincent; Johnson, Joel; Giosan, Liviu


    In contrast to the East Asian and African monsoons the Indian monsoon is still poorly documented throughout the last climatic cycle (last 135,000 years). Pollen analysis from two marine sediment cores (NGHP-01-16A and NGHP-01-19B) collected from the offshore Godavari and Mahanadi basins, both located in the Core Monsoon Zone (CMZ) reveals changes in Indian summer monsoon variability and intensity during three contrasting climatic periods: the Holocene, the Heinrich Stadial (HS) 2 and the Marine Isotopic Stage (MIS) 5/4 during the ice sheet growth transition. During the first part of the Holocene between 11,300 and 4,200 cal years BP, characterized by high insolation (minimum precession, maximum obliquity), the maximum extension of the coastal forest and mangrove reflects high monsoon rainfall. This climatic regime contrasts with that of the second phase of the Holocene, from 4,200 cal years BP to the present, marked by the development of drier vegetation in a context of low insolation (maximum precession, minimum obliquity). The historical period in India is characterized by an alternation of strong and weak monsoon centennial phases that may reflect the Medieval Climate Anomaly and the Little Ice Age, respectively. During the HS 2, a period of low insolation and extensive iceberg discharge in the North Atlantic Ocean, vegetation was dominated by grassland and dry flora indicating pronounced aridity as the result of a weak Indian summer monsoon. The MIS 5/4 glaciation, also associated with low insolation but moderate freshwater fluxes, was characterized by a weaker reduction of the Indian summer monsoon and a decrease of seasonal contrast as recorded by the expansion of dry vegetation and the development of Artemisia, respectively. Our results support model predictions suggesting that insolation changes control the long term trend of the Indian monsoon precipitation, but its millennial scale variability and intensity are instead modulated by atmospheric

  14. ITCZ and ENSO pacing on East Asian winter monsoon variation during the Holocene: Sedimentological evidence from the Okinawa Trough (United States)

    Zheng, Xufeng; Li, Anchun; Wan, Shiming; Kao, Shuhji; Kuhn, Gerhard


    Deep-sea fan sediments provide an excellent geological archive for paleoenvironment reconstruction. Grain size, clay mineral and elemental (Ti, Fe, Ca) compositions were measured for a core retrieved from a submarine fan in the Okinawa Trough. Varimax-rotated Principal Component Analysis (V-PCA) on time-evolution of grain size spectrum reveals that, since the Holocene, sediment was transported mainly by the benthic nepheloid layer (33%) and upper layers (33%) which is driven by the East Asian winter monsoon (EAWM). The intensification of the Kuroshio Current during the Holocene, masks the fluvial signal of the summer monsoon and obstructs clay minerals derived from the Yellow River, a major contributor prior to 12 ka BP. A new grain size index (GSI), which represents the EAWM well, exhibits a negative correlation with the δ18O record in Dongge Cave, China during the Holocene when sea level was relatively steady. This anticorrelation suggests the southward migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). The consistency among our records and rainfall records in Peru, Ti counts in the Cariaco Basin, monsoon records in Oman and the averaged summer insolation pattern at 30°N further support the ITCZ's impact on monsoon systems globally. Cross-Correlation Analyses for GSI and log(Ti/Ca) against δ18O record in Dongge Cave reveal a decoupling between the East Asian winter and summer monsoon during 5500-2500 cal yr BP, with greater complexity in the last 2500 years. This can be attributed to exacerbated ENSO mode fluctuations and possibly anthropogenic interference superimposed on insolation and ITCZ forcing.

  15. Patagonian and southern South Atlantic view of Holocene climate (United States)

    Kaplan, M. R.; Schaefer, J. M.; Strelin, J. A.; Denton, G. H.; Anderson, R. F.; Vandergoes, M. J.; Finkel, R. C.; Schwartz, R.; Travis, S. G.; Garcia, J. L.; Martini, M. A.; Nielsen, S. H. H.


    We present a comprehensive 10Be chronology for Holocene moraines in the Lago Argentino basin, on the east side of the South Patagonian Icefield. We focus on three different areas, where prior studies show ample glacier moraine records exist because they were formed by outlet glaciers sensitive to climate change. The 10Be dated records are from the Lago Pearson, Herminita Península-Brazo Upsala, and Lago Frías areas, which span a distance of almost 100 km adjacent to the modern Icefield. New 10Be ages show that expanded glaciers and moraine building events occurred at least at 6120 ± 390 (n = 13), 4450 ± 220 (n = 7), 1450 or 1410 ± 110 (n = 18), 360 ± 30 (n = 5), and 240 ± 20 (n = 8) years ago. Furthermore, other less well-dated glacier expansions of the Upsala Glacier occurred between 1400 and ∼1000 and ∼2300 and ∼2000 years ago. The most extensive glaciers occurred over the interval from ∼6100 to ∼4500 years ago, and their margins over the last ∼600 years were well within and lower than those in the middle Holocene. The 10Be ages agree with 14C-limiting data for the glacier histories in this area. We then link southern South American, adjacent South Atlantic, and other Southern Hemisphere records to elucidate broader regional patterns of climate and their possible causes. In the early Holocene, a far southward position of the westerly winds fostered warmth, small Patagonian glaciers, and reduced sea ice coverage over the South Atlantic. Although we infer a pronounced southward displacement of the westerlies during the early Holocene, these conditions did not occur throughout the southern mid-high latitudes, an important exception being over the southwest Pacific sector. Subsequently, a northward locus and/or expansion of the winds over the Patagonia-South Atlantic sector promoted the largest glaciers between ∼6100 and ∼4500 years ago and greatest sea ice coverage. Over the last few millennia, the South Patagonian Icefield has experienced

  16. The response of glaciers to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klok, Elisabeth Jantina


    The research described in this thesis addresses two aspects of the response of glaciers to climate change. The first aspect deals with the physical processes that govern the interaction between glaciers and climate change and was treated by (1) studying the spatial and temporal variation of the

  17. Holocene glacial fluctuations in southern South America (United States)

    Reynhout, S.; Sagredo, E. A.; Kaplan, M. R.; Aravena, J. C.; Martini, M. A.; Strelin, J. A.; Schaefer, J. M.


    Understanding the timing and magnitude of former glacier fluctuations is critical to decipher long-term climatic trends and to unravel both natural cycles and human impact on the current glacial behavior. Despite more than seven decades of research efforts, a unifying model of Holocene glacial fluctuations in Southern South America remains elusive. Here, we present the state-of-the-art regarding the timing of Holocene glacial fluctuation in southern Patagonia-Tierra del Fuego, with a focus on a new generation of high-resolution radiocarbon and 10Be surface exposure dating chronologies. Recently acquired evidence suggest that after receding from advanced Late Glacial positions, Patagonian glaciers were for the most part close to, or even behind, present ice margins during the Early Holocene. On the other hand, emerging chronologies indicate that in some areas there were extensive expansions (century scale?) that punctuated the warm interval. Subsequently, we have evidence of multiple millennial timescale glacial advances starting in the middle Holocene. Several glacial maxima are defined by moraines and other landforms from 7000 years ago to the 19th century, with a gap sometime between 4,500 and 2,500 years ago. The last set of advances began around 800-600 years ago. Although glacial activity is documented in Patagonia at the same time as the European Little Ice Age, the extent of these glacial events are less prominent than those of the mid-Holocene. The causes that may explain these glacial fluctuations remain elusive. Finally, we discuss ongoing efforts to better define the timing and extent of Holocene glaciations in southern South America, and to establish the basis to test competing hypothesis of regional Holocene climate variability.

  18. Onset and Multiple Fluctuations of Holocene Glaciation in the Sierra Nevada, California (United States)

    Bowerman, N. D.; Clark, D. H.


    Multiple sediment cores from two paternoster tarns (First and Second lakes) in North Fork Big Pine Creek, Sierra Nevada, preserve the most detailed and complete record of Holocene glaciation yet recovered in the range; they indicate that the glacier was absent during the early Holocene, reformed in the late Holocene, and experienced several expansions and contractions, culminating with the Matthes maximum during the last ˜200 years. The lakes are fed by outwash from the Palisade Glacier, the largest ( ˜1.3 km2) and presumably longest-lived glacier in the Sierra Nevada, and capture essentially all of the rock flour produced by the glacier. Distinct late-Holocene (Matthes) and late-Pleistocene (Recess Peak) moraines lie between the modern glacier and the lakes. Thus, the lakes have received continuous sedimentation since the retreat of the Tioga glacier ( ˜15,000 yr B.P.), and therefore capture rock flour related to all subsequent advances. First and Second lakes occupy relatively deep bedrock basins at 3036 m and 3066 m asl., respectively. Third Lake, a shallow (rock flour (outwash) from the upstream Palisade Glacier, most likely related to formation and expansions of the glacier in the late Holocene. The maximum peak at the top of the cores confirms the moraine record, which indicates that the maximum Holocene advance of Sierran glaciers occurred during the late Little Ice Age (last ˜200 yr) At least one tephra layer, possibly related to the Mono/Inyo dome complexes, occurs in the middle depths of the First Lake cores. Other narrow peaks in MS may also be associated with tephra deposits. Ongoing detailed analyses of the sediments, including AMS radiocarbon dating, visual and x-ray imaging, particle size analysis, organic content, tephrochronology, diatom assemblages, and palynology will constrain the timing and character of the environmental fluctuations related to the rock-flour flux. We will present results of these analyses at the meeting.

  19. Millennial-scale climate variations in western Mediterranean during late Pleistocene-early Holocene: multi-proxy analyses from Padul peatbog (southern Iberian Peninsula) (United States)

    Camuera, Jon; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; José Ramos-Román, María; García-Alix, Antonio; Jiménez-Espejo, Francisco; Toney, Jaime L.; Anderson, R. Scott; Kaufman, Darrell; Bright, Jordon; Sachse, Dirk


    Padul peatbog, located in southern Iberian Peninsula (western Mediterranean region) is a unique area for palaeoenvironmental studies due to its location, between arid and temperate climates. Previous studies showed that the Padul peatbog contains a continuous record of the last ca. 0.8-1 Ma, so it is an extraordinary site to identify glacial-interglacial phases as well as Heinrich and D-O events, linked to orbital- and suborbital-scale variations. In 2015, a new 42 m long core was taken from this area, providing an excellent sediment record probably for the last ca. 300,000 years. This study is focused on the paleoenvironmental and climatic reconstruction of the late Pleistocene and the early Holocene (ca. from 50,000 to 9,500 cal. yrs BP), using AMS 14C and AAR dating, high-resolution pollen analysis, lithology, continuous XRF-scanning, X-ray diffraction, magnetic susceptibility and organic geochemistry. These different proxies provide information not only about the regional environment change but also about local changes in the conditions of the Padul lake/peatbog due to variations in water temperature, pH or nutrients.

  20. Sediment transport drives tidewater glacier periodicity. (United States)

    Brinkerhoff, Douglas; Truffer, Martin; Aschwanden, Andy


    Most of Earth's glaciers are retreating, but some tidewater glaciers are advancing despite increasing temperatures and contrary to their neighbors. This can be explained by the coupling of ice and sediment dynamics: a shoal forms at the glacier terminus, reducing ice discharge and causing advance towards an unstable configuration followed by abrupt retreat, in a process known as the tidewater glacier cycle. Here we use a numerical model calibrated with observations to show that interactions between ice flow, glacial erosion, and sediment transport drive these cycles, which occur independent of climate variations. Water availability controls cycle period and amplitude, and enhanced melt from future warming could trigger advance even in glaciers that are steady or retreating, complicating interpretations of glacier response to climate change. The resulting shifts in sediment and meltwater delivery from changes in glacier configuration may impact interpretations of marine sediments, fjord geochemistry, and marine ecosystems.The reason some of the Earth's tidewater glaciers are advancing despite increasing temperatures is not entirely clear. Here, using a numerical model that simulates both ice and sediment dynamics, the authors show that internal dynamics drive glacier variability independent of climate.

  1. Internationally coordinated glacier monitoring: strategy and datasets (United States)

    Hoelzle, Martin; Armstrong, Richard; Fetterer, Florence; Gärtner-Roer, Isabelle; Haeberli, Wilfried; Kääb, Andreas; Kargel, Jeff; Nussbaumer, Samuel; Paul, Frank; Raup, Bruce; Zemp, Michael


    (c) the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI), a new and globally complete digital dataset of outlines from about 180,000 glaciers with some meta-information, which has been used for many applications relating to the IPCC AR5 report. Concerning glacier changes, a database (Fluctuations of Glaciers) exists containing information about mass balance, front variations including past reconstructed time series, geodetic changes and special events. Annual mass balance reporting contains information for about 125 glaciers with a subset of 37 glaciers with continuous observational series since 1980 or earlier. Front variation observations of around 1800 glaciers are available from most of the mountain ranges world-wide. This database was recently updated with 26 glaciers having an unprecedented dataset of length changes from from reconstructions of well-dated historical evidence going back as far as the 16th century. Geodetic observations of about 430 glaciers are available. The database is completed by a dataset containing information on special events including glacier surges, glacier lake outbursts, ice avalanches, eruptions of ice-clad volcanoes, etc. related to about 200 glaciers. A special database of glacier photographs contains 13,000 pictures from around 500 glaciers, some of them dating back to the 19th century. A key challenge is to combine and extend the traditional observations with fast evolving datasets from new technologies.

  2. Variations of the Geomagnetic Field During the Holocene-Pleistocene: Relative Paleointensity Records From South-Western Argentina (United States)

    Gogorza, C. S.


    I present a review of the research carried out by the Group of Geomagnetism at Universidad Nacional del Centro (Argentina) on paleointensity records from bottom sediments from three lakes: Escondido (Gogorza et al., 2004), Moreno (Gogorza et al., 2006) and El Trébol (Gogorza et al., 2007; Irurzun et al., 2008) (South-Western Argentina, 41° S, 71° 30'W). Based on these studies, we construct a first relative (RPI) stack for South-Western Argentina covering the last 21,000 14C years BP. The degree of down-core homogeneity of magnetic mineral content as well as magnetic mineral concentration and grain sizes vary between all lakes and are quantified by high-resolution rock magnetic measurements. Rock magnetic studies suggest that the main carriers of magnetization are ferrimagnetic minerals, predominantly pseudo-single domain magnetite The remanent magnetization at 20 mT (NRM20mT) was normalized using the anhysteric remanent magnetization at 20mT (ARM20mT), the saturation of the isothermal remanent at 20 mT (SIRM20mT) and the low field magnetic susceptibility {k}. Coherence function analysis indicates that the normalised records are free of environmental influences. Our paleointensity (NRM20mT/ ARM20mT) versus age curve shows a good agreement with published records from other parts of the world suggesting that, in suitable sediments, paleointensity of the geomagnetic field can give a globally coherent, dominantly dipolar signal. References Gogorza, C.S.G., Irurzun, M.A., Chaparro, M.A.E., Lirio, J.M., Nuñez, H., Bercoff, P.G., Sinito, A.M. Relative Paleointensity of the Geomagnetic Field over the last 21,000 years bp from Sediment Cores, Lake El Trébol, (Patagonia, Argentina). Earth, Planets and Space. V58(10), 1323-1332. 2006. Gogorza, C.S.G., Sinito, A.M., Lirio, J.M., Nuñez, H., Chaparro, M.A.E., Bertorello, H.R. Paleointensity Studies on Holocene-Pleistocene Sediments from Lake Escondido, Argentina. Physical of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, Elsevier, ISSN

  3. Glaciers of North America - Glaciers of Alaska (United States)

    Molnia, Bruce F.


    Glaciers cover about 75,000 km2 of Alaska, about 5 percent of the State. The glaciers are situated on 11 mountain ranges, 1 large island, an island chain, and 1 archipelago and range in elevation from more than 6,000 m to below sea level. Alaska's glaciers extend geographically from the far southeast at lat 55 deg 19'N., long 130 deg 05'W., about 100 kilometers east of Ketchikan, to the far southwest at Kiska Island at lat 52 deg 05'N., long 177 deg 35'E., in the Aleutian Islands, and as far north as lat 69 deg 20'N., long 143 deg 45'W., in the Brooks Range. During the 'Little Ice Age', Alaska's glaciers expanded significantly. The total area and volume of glaciers in Alaska continue to decrease, as they have been doing since the 18th century. Of the 153 1:250,000-scale topographic maps that cover the State of Alaska, 63 sheets show glaciers. Although the number of extant glaciers has never been systematically counted and is thus unknown, the total probably is greater than 100,000. Only about 600 glaciers (about 1 percent) have been officially named by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names (BGN). There are about 60 active and former tidewater glaciers in Alaska. Within the glacierized mountain ranges of southeastern Alaska and western Canada, 205 glaciers (75 percent in Alaska) have a history of surging. In the same region, at least 53 present and 7 former large ice-dammed lakes have produced jokulhlaups (glacier-outburst floods). Ice-capped volcanoes on mainland Alaska and in the Aleutian Islands have a potential for jokulhlaups caused by subglacier volcanic and geothermal activity. Because of the size of the area covered by glaciers and the lack of large-scale maps of the glacierized areas, satellite imagery and other satellite remote-sensing data are the only practical means of monitoring regional changes in the area and volume of Alaska's glaciers in response to short- and long-term changes in the maritime and continental climates of the State. A review of the

  4. Seismological observations of glaciers dynamic on the Spitsbergen archipelago

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fedorov A. V.


    Full Text Available The paper provides a brief description of results of Spitsbergen glacier observations by the seismic method. The study has been carried out both by permanent and temporary stations data. Characteristic features of glacier-related seismic events have been shown. Main areas of glacier seismic activity on the Archipelago have been revealed. A detailed study of Horsund-fjord glacier activity has been carried out using local seismic station HSPB data. Temporal and spatial distributions of glacier-related events have been obtained for the area. Season variations in temporal distribution of the events have been found

  5. Application of a minimal glacier model to Hansbreen, Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Oerlemans


    Full Text Available Hansbreen is a well studied tidewater glacier in the southwestern part of Svalbard, currently about 16 km long. Since the end of the 19th century it has been retreating over a distance of 2.7 km. In this paper the global dynamics of Hansbreen are studied with a minimal glacier model, in which the ice mechanics are strongly parameterised and a simple law for iceberg calving is used. The model is calibrated by reconstructing a climate history in such a way that observed and simulated glacier length match. In addition, the calving law is tuned to reproduce the observed mean calving flux for the period 2000–2008.

    Equilibrium states are studied for a wide range of values of the equilibrium line altitude. The dynamics of the glacier are strongly nonlinear. The height-mass balance feedback and the water depth-calving flux feedback give rise to cusp catastrophes in the system.

    For the present climatic conditions Hansbreen cannot survive. Depending on the imposed climate change scenario, in AD 2100 Hansbreen is predicted to have a length between 10 and 12 km. The corresponding decrease in ice volume (relative to the volume in AD 2000 is 45 to 65%.

    Finally the late-Holocene history of Hansbreen is considered. We quote evidence from dated peat samples that Hansbreen did not exist during the Holocene Climatic Optimum. We speculate that at the end of the mid-Holocene Climatic Optimum Hansbreen could advance because the glacier bed was at least 50 m higher than today, and because the tributary glaciers on the western side may have supplied a significant amount of mass to the main stream. The excavation of the overdeepening and the formation of the shoal at the glacier terminus probably took place during the Little Ice Age.

  6. The retreat of the world's mountain glaciers during recent decades

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Francou, B.; Vincent, Ch.


    Glaciers have become essential tools for measuring changes in the global environment. Here, we analyze glacier evolution during the last few decades and we wonder whether the observed retreat remains in the range of glacier fluctuations since the mid-Holocene. The main fluctuations experienced by glaciers during the last millenniums, and particularly during the Little Ice Age (-1300 A.D. to ∼1860 A.D.), are presented succinctly. The recent 1960-2005 period, well documented both by ground and remote sensing observations, shows important disparities between different massifs concerning the timing and the magnitude of glacier fluctuations, which depend on regional climatic conditions. The links between glacier mass balance evolution and climate is clear when approached from an energy balance but the variables commonly considered are only temperature and precipitation. The strong correlation existing between these variables and the mass balance evolution makes it possible to simulate glaciers in the future in function of distinct climatic scenarios. Modeling glacier retreat for the 21. century is an important goal because it will allow the impacts on water resource and sea level to be assessed. (authors)

  7. Glacier Photograph Collection (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Glacier Photograph Collection is a database of photographs of glaciers from around the world, some dating back to the mid-1850's, that provide an historical...

  8. World Glacier Inventory (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The World Glacier Inventory (WGI) contains information for over 130,000 glaciers. Inventory parameters include geographic location, area, length, orientation,...

  9. Response of C3 and C4 plants to middle-Holocene climatic variation near the prairie-forest ecotone of Minnesota, U.S.A.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tian, J; Brown, T A; Hu, F S; Stefanova, I; Nelson, D M


    Paleorecords of the middle Holocene (MH) from the North American midcontinent can offer insights into ecological responses to pervasive drought that may accompany future climatic warming. We analyzed MH sediments from West Olaf Lake (WOL) and Steel Lake (SL) in Minnesota to examine the effects of warm/dry climatic conditions on prairie-woodland ecosystems. Mineral composition and carbonate {delta}{sup 18}O were used to determine climatic variations, whereas pollen assemblages, charcoal {delta}{sup 13}C, and charcoal accumulation rates were used to reconstruct vegetation composition, C{sub 3} and C{sub 4} plant abundance, and fire. The ratio of aragonite:calcite at WOL and {delta}{sup 18}O at SL suggest that pronounced droughts occurred during the MH but that drought severity decreased with time. From charcoal {delta}{sup 13}C data we estimated that the MH abundance of C{sub 4} plants averaged 50% at WOL and 43% at SL. At WOL C{sub 4} abundance was negatively correlated with aragonite:calcite, suggesting that severe moisture deficits suppressed C{sub 4} plants in favor of weedy C{sub 3} plants (e.g., Ambrosia). As climate ameliorated C{sub 4} abundance increased (from {approx}33 to 66%) at the expense of weedy species, enhancing fuel availability and fire occurrence. In contrast, farther east at SL climate was cooler and wetter than at WOL, and C{sub 4} abundance showed no correlation with {delta}{sup 18}O-inferred aridity. Woody C{sub 3} plants (e.g., Quercus) were more abundant, biomass flammability lower, and fires less important at SL than at WOL. Our results suggest that C{sub 4} plants are adapted to warm/dry climatic conditions, but not to extreme droughts, and that the fire regime is controlled by biomass-climate interactions.

  10. Glaciers between two drivers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Machguth, Horst


    It is assumed that the monsoon is the dominant influence on Himalayan glaciers. However, a study now investigates the importance of the mid-latitude Westerlies and shows that glacier changes can be triggered from afar.......It is assumed that the monsoon is the dominant influence on Himalayan glaciers. However, a study now investigates the importance of the mid-latitude Westerlies and shows that glacier changes can be triggered from afar....

  11. Assessment of interannual variations in the surface mass balance of 18 Svalbard glaciers from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer/Terra albedo product

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Greuell, W.; Kohler, J.; Obleitner, F.; Glowacki, P.; Melvold, K.; Bernsen, E.; Oerlemans, J.


    We estimate annual anomalies of the surface mass balance of glaciers on Svalbard for the period 2000–2005 (six years), by calculating the so-called ‘‘satellite-derived mass balance’’ (Bsat) from time series of satellite-derived surface albedos. The method needs no other input variables. Surface

  12. Vegetation Response and Landscape Dynamics of Indian Summer Monsoon Variations during Holocene: An Eco-Geomorphological Appraisal of Tropical Evergreen Forest Subfossil Logs (United States)

    Kumaran, Navnith K. P.; Padmalal, Damodaran; Nair, Madhavan K.; Limaye, Ruta B.; Guleria, Jaswant S.; Srivastava, Rashmi; Shukla, Anumeha


    The high rainfall and low sea level during Early Holocene had a significant impact on the development and sustenance of dense forest and swamp-marsh cover along the southwest coast of India. This heavy rainfall flooded the coastal plains, forest flourishing in the abandoned river channels and other low-lying areas in midland.The coastline and other areas in lowland of southwestern India supply sufficient evidence of tree trunks of wet evergreen forests getting buried during the Holocene period under varying thickness of clay, silty-clay and even in sand sequences. This preserved subfossil log assemblage forms an excellent proxy for eco-geomorphological and palaeoclimate appraisal reported hitherto from Indian subcontinent, and complements the available palynological data. The bulk of the subfossil logs and partially carbonized wood remains have yielded age prior to the Holocene transgression of 6.5 k yrs BP, suggesting therein that flooding due to heavy rainfall drowned the forest cover, even extending to parts of the present shelf. These preserved logs represent a unique palaeoenvironmental database as they contain observable cellular structure. Some of them can even be compared to modern analogues. As these woods belong to the Late Pleistocene and Holocene, they form a valuable source of climate data that alleviates the lack of contemporaneous meteorological records. These palaeoforests along with pollen proxies depict the warmer environment in this region, which is consistent with a Mid Holocene Thermal Maximum often referred to as Holocene Climate Optimum. Thus, the subfossil logs of tropical evergreen forests constitute new indices of Asian palaeomonsoon, while their occurrence and preservation are attributed to eco-geomorphology and hydrological regimes associated with the intensified Asian Summer Monsoon, as recorded elsewhere. PMID:24727672

  13. Late Pleistocene and Holocene paleoclimate and alpine glacier fluctuations recorded by high-resolution grain-size data from an alpine lake sediment core, Wind River Range, Wyoming, USA (United States)

    Thompson Davis, P.; Machalett, Björn; Gosse, John


    Varved lake sediments, which provide ideal high-resolution climate proxies, are not commonly available in many geographic areas over long time scales. This paper utilizes high-resolution grain-size analyses (n = 1040) from a 520-cm long sediment core from Lower Titcomb Lake (LTL), which lies just outside the type Titcomb Basin (TTB) moraines in the Wind River Range, Wyoming. The TTB moraines lie between Lower Titcomb Lake and Upper Titcomb Lake (UTL), about 3 km beyond, and 200 m lower than the modern glacier margin and Gannett Peak (Little Ice Age) moraines in the basin. Based on cosmogenic exposure dating, the TTB moraines are believed to be Younger Dryas (YD) age (Gosse et al., 1995) and lie in a geomorphic position similar to several other outer cirque moraines throughout the western American Cordillera. Until recently, many of these outer cirque moraines were believed to be Neoglacial age. The sediment core discussed here is one of five obtained from the two Titcomb Lakes, but is by the far the longest with the oldest sediment depositional record. Two AMS radiocarbon ages from the 445- and 455-cm core depths (about 2% loss on ignition, LOI) suggest that the lake basin may have been ice-free as early as 16.1 or even 16.8 cal 14C kyr, consistent with 10Be and 26Al exposure ages from boulders and bedrock surfaces outside the TTB moraines. The 257-cm depth in the core marks an abrupt transition from inorganic, sticky gray silt below (rock flour production between the 257 and 466 cm core depths appear to be roughly correlative with the YD-Alleröd-Bölling-Meiendorf-Heinrich 1 climate events recognized in other terrestrial records and Northern Atlantic Ocean marine cores, but provide much higher resolution than most of those records from a climate-sensitive alpine region in North America.

  14. Quantifying seasonal velocity at Khumbu Glacier, Nepal (United States)

    Miles, E.; Quincey, D. J.; Miles, K.; Hubbard, B. P.; Rowan, A. V.


    While the low-gradient debris-covered tongues of many Himalayan glaciers exhibit low surface velocities, quantifying ice flow and its variation through time remains a key challenge for studies aimed at determining the long-term evolution of these glaciers. Recent work has suggested that glaciers in the Everest region of Nepal may show seasonal variability in surface velocity, with ice flow peaking during the summer as monsoon precipitation provides hydrological inputs and thus drives changes in subglacial drainage efficiency. However, satellite and aerial observations of glacier velocity during the monsoon are greatly limited due to cloud cover. Those that do exist do not span the period over which the most dynamic changes occur, and consequently short-term (i.e. daily) changes in flow, as well as the evolution of ice dynamics through the monsoon period, remain poorly understood. In this study, we combine field and remote (satellite image) observations to create a multi-temporal, 3D synthesis of ice deformation rates at Khumbu Glacier, Nepal, focused on the 2017 monsoon period. We first determine net annual and seasonal surface displacements for the whole glacier based on Landsat-8 (OLI) panchromatic data (15m) processed with ImGRAFT. We integrate inclinometer observations from three boreholes drilled by the EverDrill project to determine cumulative deformation at depth, providing a 3D perspective and enabling us to assess the role of basal sliding at each site. We additionally analyze high-frequency on-glacier L1 GNSS data from three sites to characterize variability within surface deformation at sub-seasonal timescales. Finally, each dataset is validated against repeat-dGPS observations at gridded points in the vicinity of the boreholes and GNSS dataloggers. These datasets complement one another to infer thermal regime across the debris-covered ablation area of the glacier, and emphasize the seasonal and spatial variability of ice deformation for glaciers in High

  15. Similar speleothem δ18O signals indicating diverging climate variations in inland central Asia and monsoonal south Asia during the Holocene (United States)

    Jin, Liya; Zhang, Xiaojian


    High-resolution and precisely dated speleothem oxygen isotope (δ18O) records from Asia have provided key evidence for past monsoonal changes. It is found that δ18O records of stalagmites from Kesang Cave (42°52'N, 81°45'E, Xinjiang, China) in inland central Asia were very similar to those from Qunf Cave (17°10'N, 54°18'E, southern Oman) in South Asia, shifting from light to heavy throughout the Holocene, which was regarded as a signal that strong Asian summer monsoon (ASM) may have intruded into the Kesang Cave site and/or adjacent areas in inland central Asia to produce heavy rainfall during the high insolation times (e.g. the early Holocene). However, this is in contrast to conclusions based on other Holocene proxy records and modeling simulations, showing a persistent wetting trend in arid central Asia during the Holocene with a dryer condition in the early Holocene and the wettest condition in the late Holocene. With an analysis of model-proxy data comparison, we revealed a possible physical mechanism responsible for the Holocene evolution of moisture/precipitation in Asian summer monsoon (ASM)-dominated regions and that in the inland central Asia. It is revealed that a recurrent circumglobal teleconnection (CGT) pattern in the summertime mid-latitude circulation of the Northern Hemisphere was closely related to the ASM and the climate of inland central Asia, acting as a bridge linking the ASM to insolation, high-latitude forcing (North Atlantic sea surface temperature (SST)), and low-latitude forcing (tropical Ocean SST). Also, the CGT influence speleothem δ18O values in South Asia via its effect on the amount of precipitation. In addition, the moisture source from the Indian Ocean is associated with relatively high δ18O values compared with that from the North Atlantic Ocean, leading to increased precipitation δ18O values. Hence, the CGT has probably been the key factor responsible for the in-phase relationship in speleothem δ18O values (Kesang Cave

  16. Neoglacial fluctuations of Deming Glacier, Mt. Baker, Washington USA. (United States)

    Osborn, G.; Menounos, B.; Scott, K.; Clague, J. J.; Tucker, D.; Riedel, J.; Davis, P.


    Deming Glacier flows from the upper west slopes of Mt. Baker, a stratovolcano in the Cascade Range of Washington, USA. The north and south lateral moraines of Deming Glacier are composed of at least four tills separated by layers of detrital wood and sheared stumps in growth position. The stratigraphy records fluctuations of the glacier during the Holocene. The outer ten rings of an in situ stump from the middle wood layer, which is about 40 m below the north lateral moraine crest and 1.2 km downvalley from the present glacier terminus, yielded an age of 1750 ± 50~~ 14C yr BP [1810-1550 cal yr BP]. The stump revealed at least 300 rings and thus records a period of landscape stability and relatively restricted glaciation for several hundred years prior to ca. 1750 14C yr BP . Samples from the lowest wood layer also have been submitted for radiocarbon dating. Outer rings of detrital wood samples collected from two wood mats exposed in the south lateral moraine, 2.3 km downvalley of the glacier terminus, returned radiocarbon ages of 1600 ± 30~~ 14C yr BP [1550- 1410 cal yr BP] and 430 ± 30~~ 14C yr BP [AD 1420-1620]. These data indicate that Deming Glacier advanced over a vegetated moraine sometime after 1810 cal yr BP to a position less extensive that it achieved at the peak of the Little Ice Age. The glacier then receded before it began its final and most extensive Holocene advance after AD 1420. The older advance is correlative with the 'First Millennium AD' advance, recently recognized throughout western North America. The younger advance coincides with an advance of Mt. Baker's Easton Glacier [AD 1430-1630], and advances of many alpine glaciers elsewhere in western North America. Our data suggest that glaciers on Mt. Baker fluctuated in a similar manner to alpine glaciers in the Coast Mountains of British Columbia and in other mountain ranges of northwest North America during Neoglaciation.

  17. Early and late Holocene glacial fluctuations and tephrostratigraphy, Cabin Lake, Alaska (United States)

    Zander, Paul D.; Kaufman, Darrell S.; Kuehn, Stephen C.; Wallace, Kristi L.; Anderson, R. Scott


    Marked changes in sediment types deposited in Cabin Lake, near Cordova, Alaska, represent environmental shifts during the early and late Holocene, including fluctuations in the terminal position of Sheridan Glacier. Cabin Lake is situated to receive meltwater during periods when the outwash plain of the advancing Sheridan Glacier had aggraded. A brief early Holocene advance from 11.2 to 11.0 cal ka is represented by glacial rock flour near the base of the sediment core. Non-glacial lake conditions were restored for about 1000 years before the water level in Cabin Lake lowered and the core site became a fen. The fen indicates drier-than-present conditions leading up to the Holocene thermal maximum. An unconformity spanning 5400 years during the mid-Holocene is overlain by peat until 1110 CE when meltwater from Sheridan Glacier returned to the basin. Three intervals of an advanced Sheridan Glacier are recorded in the Cabin Lake sediments during the late Holocene: 1110–1180, 1260–1540 and 1610–1780 CE. The sedimentary sequence also contains the first five reported tephra deposits from the Copper River delta region, and their geochemical signatures suggest that the sources are the Cook Inlet volcanoes Redoubt, Augustine and Crater Peak, and possibly Mt Churchill in the Wrangell Volcanic field.

  18. Glaciers of Asia (United States)

    Williams, Richard S.; Ferrigno, Jane G.


    This chapter is the ninth to be released in U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 1386, Satellite Image Atlas of Glaciers of the World, a series of 11 chapters. In each of the geographic area chapters, remotely sensed images, primarily from the Landsat 1, 2, and 3 series of spacecraft, are used to analyze the specific glacierized region of our planet under consideration and to monitor glacier changes. Landsat images, acquired primarily during the middle to late 1970s and early 1980s, were used by an international team of glaciologists and other scientists to study various geographic regions and (or) to discuss related glaciological topics. In each glacierized geographic region, the present areal distribution of glaciers is compared, wherever possible, with historical information about their past extent. The atlas provides an accurate regional inventory of the areal extent of glacier ice on our planet during the 1970s as part of a growing international scientific effort to measure global environmental change on the Earth?s surface. The chapter is divided into seven geographic parts and one topical part: Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union (F-1), Glaciers of China (F-2), Glaciers of Afghanistan (F?3), Glaciers of Pakistan (F-4), Glaciers of India (F-5), Glaciers of Nepal (F?6), Glaciers of Bhutan (F-7), and the Paleoenvironmental Record Preserved in Middle-Latitude, High-Mountain Glaciers (F-8). Each geographic section describes the glacier extent during the 1970s and 1980s, the benchmark time period (1972-1981) of this volume, but has been updated to include more recent information. Glaciers of the Former Soviet Union are located in the Russian Arctic and various mountain ranges of Russia and the Republics of Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Kazakstun. The Glacier Inventory of the USSR and the World Atlas of Ice and Snow Resources recorded a total of 28,881 glaciers covering an area of 78,938 square kilometers (km2). China includes many of the mountain-glacier

  19. Simulating calving-front changes of Greenland’s marine-terminating glaciers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Haubner, Konstanze

    glacier retreat to a certain degree and foremost define the variation of retreat rates. The thesis implies the importance of incorporating glacier-front dynamics into ice sheet models in order to match observations and verifies atmospheric and oceanic forcing as important triggers for glacier retreat...... UI outlet glaciers. The change in mass flux resulting from the prescribed glacier retreat contributes to 70% of UI’s mass change over the simulation periods. The residual mass change is due to surface mass balance. A second simulation on the fastest UI glacier (UI-1) reveals that frontal melt rates...

  20. Internationally coordinated glacier monitoring - a timeline since 1894 (United States)

    Nussbaumer, Samuel U.; Armstrong, Richard; Fetterer, Florence; Gärtner-Roer, Isabelle; Hoelzle, Martin; Machguth, Horst; Mölg, Nico; Paul, Frank; Raup, Bruce H.; Zemp, Michael


    Changes in glaciers and ice caps provide some of the clearest evidence of climate change, with impacts on sea-level variations, regional hydrological cycles, and natural hazard situations. Therefore, glaciers have been recognized as an Essential Climate Variable (ECV). Internationally coordinated collection and distribution of standardized information about the state and change of glaciers and ice caps was initiated in 1894 and is today organized within the Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G). GTN-G ensures the continuous development and adaptation of the international strategies to the long-term needs of users in science and policy. A GTN-G Steering Committee coordinates, supports and advices the operational bodies responsible for the international glacier monitoring, which are the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS), the US National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), and the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) initiative. In this presentation, we trace the development of the internationally coordinated glacier monitoring since its beginning in the 19th century. Today, several online databases containing a wealth of diverse data types with different levels of detail and global coverage provide fast access to continuously updated information on glacier fluctuation and inventory data. All glacier datasets are made freely available through the respective operational bodies within GTN-G, and can be accessed through the GTN-G Global Glacier Browser ( Glacier inventory data (e.g., digital outlines) are available for about 180,000 glaciers (GLIMS database, RGI - Randolph Glacier Inventory, WGI - World Glacier Inventory). Glacier front variations with about 45,000 entries since the 17th century and about 6,200 glaciological and geodetic mass (volume) change observations dating back to the 19th century are available in the Fluctuations of Glaciers (FoG) database. These datasets reveal clear evidence that

  1. Groundwater flow systems in the great Aletsch glacier region (Valais, Switzerland) (United States)

    Alpiger, Andrea; Loew, Simon


    above the terraces of Riederalp and Bettmeralp in or near steeply dipping fault zones striking parallel to the ridge, suggesting locally a near-surface groundwater table. Drying up of several of these springs (at lateral distances up to 4 km) after construction of the Riederhornstollen, as well as associated large tunnel water inflows, demonstrates large scale hydraulic connections along strike of these fault zones. The catchment areas of these springs have to be located close to the ridge crest, above the terraces of Riederalp and Bettmeralp, and extend over many kilometers. This fault system thus drains significant portions of the high-altitude recharge and induces a complex 3D groundwater flow field of the Aletsch area. Variations in glacial ice extent due to different climatic conditions during the Lateglacial and Holocene periods were studied by varying the boundary condition of the great Aletsch glacier. Results have to be interpreted with care, as the glacier pressure boundary conditions were modelled like a lake. Detailed investigations of these boundary conditions have been initialized by glacier drillings equipped with melt water pressure sensors. With the simplified boundary conditions applied to the glacier bed, elevated ice surfaces during the Little Ice Age stage only slightly influence the flow field and total hydraulic head conditions on the NW side of the ridge. On the other hand, the Egesen stadial causes a fundamental change of the groundwater devide with all flow lines, even from below the Aletsch glacier, oriented towards the Rhone valley.

  2. Tectonic controls of Holocene erosion in a glaciated orogen


    Adams, Byron A.; Ehlers, Todd A.


    Recent work has highlighted a strong, worldwide, glacial impact of orogen erosion rates over the last 2 Ma. While it may be assumed that glaciers increased erosion rates when active, the degree to which past glaciations influence Holocene erosion rates through the adjustment of topography is not known. In this study, we investigate the influence of long-term tectonic and post-glacial topographic controls on erosion in a glaciated orogen, the Olympic Mountains, USA. We present 14 new 10Be and ...

  3. Cirque Glacier on South Georgia Shows Centennial Variability over the Last 7000 Years

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lea T. Oppedal


    Full Text Available A 7000 year-long cirque glacier reconstruction from South Georgia, based on detailed analysis of fine-grained sediments deposited downstream in a bog and a lake, suggests continued presence during most of the Holocene. Glacier activity is inferred from various sedimentary properties including magnetic susceptibility (MS, dry bulk density (DBD, loss-on-ignition (LOI and geochemical elements (XRF, and tallied to a set of terminal moraines. The two independently dated sediment records document concurring events of enhanced glacigenic sediment influx to the bog and lake, whereas the upstream moraines afford the opportunity to calculate past Equilibrium Line Altitudes (ELA which has varied in the order of 70 m altitude. Combined, the records provide new evidence of cirque glacier fluctuations on South Georgia. Based on the onset of peat formation, the study site was deglaciated prior to 9900 ± 250 years ago when Neumayer tidewater glacier retreated up-fjord. Changes in the lake and bog sediment properties indicate that the cirque glacier was close to its maximum Holocene extent between 7200 ± 400 and 4800 ± 200 cal BP, 2700 ± 150 and 2000 ± 200 cal BP, 500 ± 150–300 ± 100 cal BP, and in the Twentieth century (likely 1930s. The glacier fluctuations are largely in-phase with reconstructed Patagonian glaciers, implying that they respond to centennial climate variability possibly connected to corresponding modulations of the Southern Westerly Winds.

  4. Cirque glacier on South Georgia shows centennial variability over the last 7000 years (United States)

    Oppedal, Lea T.; Bakke, Jostein; Paasche, Øyvind; Werner, Johannes P.; van der Bilt, Willem G. M.


    A 7000 year-long cirque glacier reconstruction from South Georgia, based on detailed analysis of fine-grained sediments deposited downstream in a bog and a lake, suggests continued presence during most of the Holocene. Glacier activity is inferred from various sedimentary properties including magnetic susceptibility (MS), dry bulk density (DBD), loss-on-ignition (LOI) and geochemical elements (XRF), and tallied to a set of terminal moraines. The two independently dated sediment records document concurring events of enhanced glacigenic sediment influx to the bog and lake, whereas the upstream moraines afford the opportunity to calculate past Equilibrium Line Altitudes (ELA) which has varied in the order of 70 m altitude. Combined, the records provide new evidence of cirque glacier fluctuations on South Georgia. Based on the onset of peat formation, the study site was deglaciated prior to 9900±250 years ago when Neumayer tidewater glacier retreated up-fjord. Changes in the lake and bog sediment properties indicate that the cirque glacier was close to its maximum Holocene extent between 7200±400 and 4800±200 cal BP, 2700±150 and 2000±200 cal BP, 500±150-300±100 cal BP, and in the 20th century (likely 1930s). The glacier fluctuations are largely in-phase with reconstructed Patagonian glaciers, implying that they respond to centennial climate variability possibly connected to corresponding modulations of the Southern Westerly Winds.

  5. Modeled climate-induced glacier change in Glacier National Park, 1850-2100 (United States)

    Hall, M.H.P.; Fagre, D.B.


    The glaciers in the Blackfoot-Jackson Glacier Basin of Glacier National Park, Montana, decreased in area from 21.6 square kilometers (km2) in 1850 to 7.4 km2 in 1979. Over this same period global temperatures increased by 0.45??C (?? 0. 15??C). We analyzed the climatic causes and ecological consequences of glacier retreat by creating spatially explicit models of the creation and ablation of glaciers and of the response of vegetation to climate change. We determined the melt rate and spatial distribution of glaciers under two possible future climate scenarios, one based on carbon dioxide-induced global warming and the other on a linear temperature extrapolation. Under the former scenario, all glaciers in the basin will disappear by the year 2030, despite predicted increases in precipitation; under the latter, melting is slower. Using a second model, we analyzed vegetation responses to variations in soil moisture and increasing temperature in a complex alpine landscape and predicted where plant communities are likely to be located as conditions change.

  6. Subglacial discharge at tidewater glaciers revealed by seismic tremor (United States)

    Bartholomaus, Timothy C.; Amundson, Jason M.; Walter, Jacob I.; O'Neel, Shad; West, Michael E.; Larsen, Christopher F.


    Subglacial discharge influences glacier basal motion and erodes and redeposits sediment. At tidewater glacier termini, discharge drives submarine terminus melting, affects fjord circulation, and is a central component of proglacial marine ecosystems. However, our present inability to track subglacial discharge and its variability significantly hinders our understanding of these processes. Here we report observations of hourly to seasonal variations in 1.5–10 Hz seismic tremor that strongly correlate with subglacial discharge but not with basal motion, weather, or discrete icequakes. Our data demonstrate that vigorous discharge occurs from tidewater glaciers during summer, in spite of fast basal motion that could limit the formation of subglacial conduits, and then abates during winter. Furthermore, tremor observations and a melt model demonstrate that drainage efficiency of tidewater glaciers evolves seasonally. Glaciohydraulic tremor provides a means by which to quantify subglacial discharge variations and offers a promising window into otherwise obscured glacierized environments.

  7. The retreat of the world's mountain glaciers during recent decades; Le retrait des glaciers de montagne dans le monde au cours des dernieres decennies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Francou, B. [Institut de Recherche pour le Developpement (IRD), Mission de Quito, Equateur - LTHE, 38 - Grenoble (France); Vincent, Ch. [Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), UJF, LGGE, 38 - Grenoble (France)


    Glaciers have become essential tools for measuring changes in the global environment. Here, we analyze glacier evolution during the last few decades and we wonder whether the observed retreat remains in the range of glacier fluctuations since the mid-Holocene. The main fluctuations experienced by glaciers during the last millenniums, and particularly during the Little Ice Age (-1300 A.D. to {approx}1860 A.D.), are presented succinctly. The recent 1960-2005 period, well documented both by ground and remote sensing observations, shows important disparities between different massifs concerning the timing and the magnitude of glacier fluctuations, which depend on regional climatic conditions. The links between glacier mass balance evolution and climate is clear when approached from an energy balance but the variables commonly considered are only temperature and precipitation. The strong correlation existing between these variables and the mass balance evolution makes it possible to simulate glaciers in the future in function of distinct climatic scenarios. Modeling glacier retreat for the 21. century is an important goal because it will allow the impacts on water resource and sea level to be assessed. (authors)

  8. Climate variations and the enhanced greenhouse effect

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karlen, W. [Stockholm Univ. (Sweden). Dept. of Physical Geography


    Changes in the size of glaciers, in the altitude of the alpine tree-limit, and variation in the width of tree-rings during the Holocene clearly indicate that the average Scandinavian summer temperature has fluctuated. During warm periods it has been about 2 deg C warmer than at present; during cold periods it has been almost as cold as it was during the coldest decades of the previous centuries. Superimposed on these long-term variations, which have lasted from 100 to 200 years, are short fluctuations in temperature. The Scandinavian chronology, which is based on glacier and alpine tree-limit fluctuations as well as on dendrochronology, is well correlated with the changes in climate, which studies of ice cores from central Greenland have revealed. It is therefore believed that the Scandinavian climate chronology depicts conditions typical of a large area. The Scandinavian record is compared with data concerning solar irradiation variations estimated as {sup 14}C anomalies obtained from tree-rings. A correlation between major changes in climate and variations in solar irradiation points to a solar forcing of the climate. This means that there is no evidence of a human influence on climate so far Special issue. Research for mountain area development: Europe. 64 refs, 3 figs

  9. Geochronology and Equilibrium Line Altitudes of LLGM through Holocene Glaciations from the Tropical Cordillera Huayhuash, Peru (United States)

    Hall, S. R.; Ramage, J. M.; Rodbell, D. T.; Finkel, R. C.; Smith, J. A.; Mark, B. G.; Farber, D. L.


    Geomorphologic relationships and cosmogenic 10Be ages from the Central Peruvian Andes reveal a rich record of glaciations from at least the late Holocene, Late Glacial, Last Local Glacial Maximum (LLGM), and older more extensive glaciations - dated between 50ka and 440ka in both the Cordillera Blanca, to the north and the Junin Region to the south. The Cordillera Huayhuash (10.3°S, 76.9°W) is located between these two well-studied regions. The spine of the range trends nearly north-south and contains a substantial east-west spur which together can be used to evaluate the spatial variation in paleo-ELAs. The range is thus a key location to study changes in ice extent and equilibrium line altitudes (ELAs) between the LLGM and modern periods. Modern glaciers are confined to altitudes >4800 m and the present (1997) ELA is 4800- 5100m. In order to determine the paleo-ice positions of glaciers in different valleys we have developed a new chronology from cosmogenic 10Be ages of moraine boulder and 14C basal bog core ages. Through field mapping of glacial features, analysis of satellite imagery, digital elevation models (DEMs), and geochronology, we have delineated the ice limits associated with the LLGM, Late Glacial, and Late Holocene advances. Ages in the three valleys we have studied cluster at ~29ka, ~13ka, and ~9ka and overall we have identified surfaces with ages that range from 39.9±1.4ka to 0.2ka±0.05ka. Based on these data, we have mapped the extent of the correlative paleo-glaciers in these three drainages and extracted the modern hypsometry for each paleo-glacier from the DEMs. From this data set, we have generated paleo- ELAs using a range of methods: Toe-to-Headwall-Altitude Ratio (THAR), the Accumulation Area Ratio (AAR), and Accumulation Area Balance Ratio (AABR). For each of the LLGM, Late Glacial and Holocene stages, we have calculated both: (1) the temperature depression assuming no moisture variations, and (2) the potential relative moisture

  10. Holocene stratigraphy and vegetation history in the Scoresby Sund area, East Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Funder, Svend Visby


    The Holocene stratigraphy in Scoresby Sund is based on climatic change as reflected by fluctuations in fjord and valley glaciers, immigration and extinction of marine molluscs, and the vegetation history recorded in pollen diagrams from five lakes. The histories are dated by C-14, and indirectly...

  11. Technical note: Representing glacier geometry changes in a semi-distributed hydrological model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Seibert


    Full Text Available Glaciers play an important role in high-mountain hydrology. While changing glacier areas are considered of highest importance for the understanding of future changes in runoff, glaciers are often only poorly represented in hydrological models. Most importantly, the direct coupling between the simulated glacier mass balances and changing glacier areas needs feasible solutions. The use of a complex glacier model is often not possible due to data and computational limitations. The Δh parameterization is a simple approach to consider the spatial variation of glacier thickness and area changes. Here, we describe a conceptual implementation of the Δh parameterization in the semi-distributed hydrological model HBV-light, which also allows for the representation of glacier advance phases and for comparison between the different versions of the implementation. The coupled glacio-hydrological simulation approach, which could also be implemented in many other semi-distributed hydrological models, is illustrated based on an example application.

  12. Holocene fire dynamics in Fennoscandia (United States)

    Clear, Jennifer; Seppa, Heikki; Kuosmanen, Niina; Molinari, Chiara; Lehsten, Veiko; Allen, Katherine; Bradshaw, Richard


    Prescribed burning is advocated in Fennoscandia to promote regeneration and to encourage biodiversity. This method of forest management is based on the perception that fire was much more frequent in the recent past and over a century of active fire suppression has created a boreal forest ecosystem almost free of natural fire. The absence of fire is thought to have contributed to the widespread dominance of Picea abies (Norway spruce) with the successive spruce dominated forest further reducing fire ignition potential. However, humans have altered the natural fire dynamics of Fennoscandia since the early- to mid-Holocene and disentangling the anthropogenic driven fire dynamics from the natural fire dynamics is challenging. Through palaeoecology and sedimentary charcoal deposits we are able to explore the Holocene spatial and temporal variability and changing drivers of fire and vegetation dynamics in Fennoscandia. At the local-scale, two forest hollow environments (history are compared to identify unique and mutual changes in disturbance history. Pollen derived quantitative reconstruction of vegetation at both the local- and regional-scale identifies local-scale disturbance dynamics and large-scale ecosystem response. Spatio-temporal heterogeneity and variability in biomass burning is explored throughout Fennoscandia and Denmark to identify the changing drives of fire dynamics throughout the Holocene. Palaeo-vegetation reconstructions are compared to process-based, climate driven dynamic vegetation model output to test the significance of fire frequency as a driver of vegetation composition and dynamics. Early-Holocene fire regimes in Fennoscandia are driven by natural climate variations and fuel availability. The establishment and spread of Norway spruce is driven by an increase in continentality of climate, but local natural and anthropogenic ecosystem disturbance may have aided this spread. The expansion of spruce led to a step-wise reduction in regional biomass

  13. Paleoenvironmental Reconstruction of the North Atlantic Current Variations from MIS 3 to Holocene Based on Multiproxy Record from the North-East Scotland Continental Margin. (United States)

    Ovsepyan, Y.; Tikhonova, A.; Novichkova, E.; Gupta, R. M.; Korsun, S.; Matul, A.


    In order to reconstruct the history of water mass interaction between the North Atlantic and the Nordic Seas since MIS 3 to the present, the sediment core from the North-East Scotland continental slope was investigated. The site of core AI-3521 (59°30.009 N, 7°20.062 E) from the 1051 m water depth is located beneath the pathway of the North Atlantic current which transports warm and saline Atlantic surface water to the Norwegian Sea. The age model of the sequence is based on stable isotope record of benthic Cassidulina neoteretis and planktic Neogloboquadrina pachyderma sin. and Globigerina bulloides. The Holocene interval of the upper 1.5 m is characterized by high sedimentation rates and the high biodiversity of microfauna. The distribution of ice rafted debris and CaCO3 content; benthic and planktic foraminiferal assemblages; oxygen, carbon and boron isotopes, Mg/Ca ratio were used to reconstruct the regional paleoceanographic conditions (bioproductivity, temperature, salinity) and to compare with the paleoclimatic events in the subpolar North Atlantic in the frame of the global environmental changes during the Late Pleistocene and Holocene. The research was supported by Russian Science Foundation projects 16-47-02009 and 14-50-00095.

  14. Holocene glaciation of the central Sierra Nevada, California (United States)

    Bowerman, Nicole D.; Clark, Douglas H.


    Sediment cores from two bedrock-dammed lakes in North Fork Big Pine Creek, Sierra Nevada, California, preserve the most detailed and complete record of Holocene glaciation yet recovered in the region. The lakes are fed by outwash from the Palisade Glacier, the largest (˜1.3 km 2) and presumably longest-lived glacier in the range, and capture essentially all of the rock flour it produces. Distinct late-Holocene (Matthes) and late-Pleistocene (Recess Peak) moraines lie between the modern glacier and the lakes. The lakes have therefore received continuous sedimentation from the basin since the retreat of the Tioga glacier (Last Glacial Maximum) and capture rock flour related to all post-LGM advances. A total of eight long cores (up to 5.5 m sediment depth) and one short surface sediment short core preserve a coherent record of fluctuating rock flour flux to the lakes through the Holocene. Age constraints on rock flour spikes in First and Second lakes based on 31 14C-dated macrofossils indicate Holocene glaciation began ˜3200 cal yr B P, followed by a possible glacier maximum at ˜2800 cal yr B P and four distinct glacier maxima at ˜2200, ˜1600, ˜700 and ˜250-170 cal yr. B.P., the most recent maximum being the largest. Reconstruction of the equilibrium-line altitudes (ELA) associated with each distinct advance recorded in the moraines (Recess Peak, Matthes, and modern) indicates ELA depressions (relative to modern) of ˜250 m and 90 m for Recess Peak and Matthes advances, respectively. These differences represent decreases in summer temperatures of 1.7-2.8 °C (Recess Peak) and 0.2-2° (Matthes), and increases in winter precipitation of 22-34 cm snow water equivalent (s.w.e.) (Recess Peak) and 3-26 cm s.w.e. (Matthes) compared to modern conditions. Although small, these changes are significant and similar to those noted in the Cascade Range to the north, and represent a significant departure from historical climate trends in the region.

  15. Glaciers and society

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gagné, Karine; Rasmussen, Mattias Borg; Orlove, Ben


    As icons of a world set in motion by human action, glaciers are often highlighted as quintessential evidences of global climate change. Although there is a general agreement among scientists that glaciers around the world are receding, much of the discussions on the subject tend to be oriented...... true when esthetic and economic values are assigned to glaciers. Real and perceived changes in the form, reach and out-flow of water impact the local populations, and shape the kinds of action undertaken by communities, local actors, state authorities, and international organizations. The paper...

  16. Diversity of Holocene life forms in fossil glacier ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Willerslev, E.; Hansen, Anders J.; Christensen, B.


    Studies of biotic remains of polar ice caps have been limited to morphological identification of plant pollen and spores. By using sensitive molecular techniques, we now demonstrate a much greater range of detectable organisms; from 2000- and 4000-year-old ice-core samples, we obtained...

  17. Multiple glacial culminations from the Lateglacial to the late Holocene in central and southern Peru (Invited) (United States)

    Licciardi, J. M.; Schaefer, J. M.; Rodbell, D. T.; Stansell, N.; Schweinsberg, A.; Finkel, R. C.; Zimmerman, S. R.


    Fluctuations in small tropical mountain glaciers serve as sensitive indicators of variations in past and present-day climate. Most of the world's modern tropical glaciers reside in the Peruvian Andes, where a growing number of well-dated glacial records have recently been developed. As additional records are documented, regional patterns of late Pleistocene to Holocene glacial activity have begun to emerge. Here we present a compilation of new and previously obtained 10Be surface exposure ages from boulders on well-preserved moraine successions in two glaciated Andean ranges: the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (13°20'S, 72°32'W) and the Huaguruncho massif (10°32'S, 75°56'W), located in central Peru ~450 km northwest of the Vilcabamba. A high-resolution composite chronology that merges >100 10Be measurements on moraine sequences in five glaciated drainages of the Cordillera Vilcabamba reveals the occurrence of at least five discrete glacial culminations from the Lateglacial to the late Holocene. At the Huaguruncho massif, >20 10Be exposure ages obtained from moraine sequences in a south-facing cirque indicate at least three major glacial stages spanning the Lateglacial to the Little Ice Age. The moraine ages at Huaguruncho are broadly correlative with the Vilcabamba moraine chronologies, with some dated moraine belts exhibiting geomorphic expressions that closely resemble those of their coeval counterparts in the Vilcabamba. A recurring finding in both field areas is a mismatch between basal radiocarbon ages from bog and lake sediments and 10Be exposure ages on outboard moraines, which enclose the depositional basins. These age discrepancies suggest that cosmogenic 10Be production rates scaled to high altitudes in the tropics are substantially lower than previous estimates. While we anticipate that future refinements to scaled isotope production rates may significantly affect correlation of 10Be exposure ages in the high Andes with ages derived from

  18. Seasonal variations in the sources of natural and anthropogenic lead deposited at the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas. (United States)

    Burn-Nunes, Laurie; Vallelonga, Paul; Lee, Khanghyun; Hong, Sungmin; Burton, Graeme; Hou, Shugui; Moy, Andrew; Edwards, Ross; Loss, Robert; Rosman, Kevin


    Lead (Pb) isotopic compositions and concentrations, and barium (Ba) and indium (In) concentrations have been analysed at sub-annual resolution in three sections from a snow pit samples dated to 2004/2005, recovered from the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas. Ice core sections indicate that atmospheric chemistry prior to ~1,953 was controlled by mineral dust inputs, with no discernible volcanic or anthropogenic contributions. Eighteenth century monsoon ice core chemistry is indicative of dominant contributions from local Himalayan sources; non-monsoon ice core chemistry is linked to contributions from local (Himalayan), regional (Indian/Thar Desert) and long-range (North Africa, Central Asia) sources. Twentieth century monsoon and non-monsoon ice core data demonstrate similar seasonal sources of mineral dust, however with a transition to less-radiogenic isotopic signatures that suggests local and regional climate/environmental change. The snow pit record demonstrates natural and anthropogenic contributions during both seasons, with increased anthropogenic influence during non-monsoon times. Monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to South/South-East Asia and/or India, whereas non-monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to India and Central Asia. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Glacier History of the Northern Antarctic Peninsula Region Since the End of the Last Ice Age and Implications for Southern Hemisphere Westerly-Climate Changes (United States)

    Kaplan, M. R.; Schaefer, J. M.; Strelin, J. A.; Peltier, C.; Southon, J. R.; Lepper, K. E.; Winckler, G.


    For the area around James Ross Island, we present new cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages on glacial deposits, and 14C ages on associated fossil materials. These data allow us to reconstruct in detail when and how the Antarctic Peninsula Ice Sheet retreated around the Island as the last Ice Age ended, and afterward when local land-based glaciers fluctuated. Similar to other studies, we found widespread deglaciation during the earliest Holocene, with fjords and bays becoming ice free between about 11,000 and 8,000 years ago. After 7,000 years ago, neoglacial type advances initiated. Then, both expansions and ice free periods occurred from the middle to late Holocene. We compare the new glacier record to those in southern Patagonia, which is on the other side of the Drake Passage, and published Southern Ocean marine records, in order to infer past middle to high latitude changes in the Southern Hemisphere Westerlies. Widespread warmth in the earliest Holocene, to the north and south of the Drake Passage, led to small glacier systems in Patagonia and wide-ranging glacier recession around the northern Antarctic Peninsula. We infer that this early Holocene period of overall glacier recession - from Patagonia to the northern Peninsula - was caused by a persistent far-southerly setting of the westerlies and accompanying warm climates. Subsequently, during the middle Holocene renewed glacier expansions occurred on both sides of the Drake Passage, which reflects that the Westerlies and associated colder climate systems were generally more equatorward. From the middle to late Holocene, glacier expansions and ice free periods (and likely related ice shelf behavior) document how the Westerlies and associated higher-latitude climate systems varied.


    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    C. Harrington; R. Kelly; K.T. Ebert


    Variations in erosion and deposition for the last fifty years (based on estimates from 137Cs profiles) on surfaces (Late Pleistocene to Late Holocene in age) making up the Fortymile Wash alluvial fan south of Yucca Mountain, is a function of surface age and of desert pavement development or absence. For purposes of comparing erosion and deposition, the surfaces can be examined as three groups: (1) Late Pleistocene surfaces possess areas of desert pavement development with thin Av or sandy A horizons, formed by the trapping capabilities of the pavements. These zones of deposition are complemented by coppice dune formation on similar parts of the surface. Areas on the surface where no pavement development has occurred are erosional in nature with 0.0 +/- 0.0 cm to 1.5 +/- 0.5 cm of erosion occurring primarily by winds blowing across the surface. Overall these surfaces may show either a small net depositional gain or small erosional loss. (2) Early Holocene surfaces have no well-developed desert pavements, but may have residual gravel deposits in small areas on the surfaces. These surfaces show the most consistent erosional surface areas on which it ranges from 1.0 +/-.01 cm to 2.0+/- .01 cm. Fewer depositional forms are found on this age of surface so there is probably a net loss of 1.5 cm across these surfaces. (3) The Late Holocene surfaces show the greatest variability in erosion and deposition. Overbank deposition during floods cover many edges of these surfaces and coppice dune formation also creates depositional features. Erosion rates are highly variable and range from 0.0 +/- 0.0 to a maximum of 2.0+/-.01. Erosion occurs because of the lack of protection of the surface. However, the common areas of deposition probably result in the surface having a small net depositional gain across these surfaces. Thus, the interchannel surfaces of the Fortymile Wash fan show a variety of erosional styles as well as areas of deposition. The fan, therefore, is a dynamic

  1. The energy balance on the surface of a tropical glacier tongue. Investigations on glacier Artesonraju, Cordillera Blanca, Perú. (United States)

    Juen, I.; Mölg, T.; Wagnon, P.; Cullen, N. J.; Kaser, G.


    The Cordillera Blanca in Perú is situated in the Outer Tropics spanning from 8 to 10 ° South. Solar incidence and air temperature show only minor seasonal variations whereas precipitation occurs mainly from October to April. An energy balance station was installed on the tongue of glacier Artesonraju (4850 m a.s.l.) in March 2004. In this study each component of the energy balance on the glacier surface is analysed separately over a full year, covering one dry and one wet season. During the dry season glacier melt at the glacier tongue is app. 0.5 m we per month. In the wet season glacier melt is twice as much with 1 m we per month. This is due to higher energy fluxes and decreased sublimation during the wet season. With an energy balance model that has already been proved under tropical climate conditions (Mölg and Hardy, 2004) each energy flux is changed individually to evaluate the change in the amount of glacier melt. First results indicate that a change in humidity related variables affects glacier melt very differently in the dry and wet season, whereas a change in air temperature changes glacier melt more constantly throughout the year.

  2. Seasonal variations in the sources of natural and anthropogenic lead deposited at the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burn-Nunes, Laurie; Vallelonga, Paul; Lee, Khanghyun; Hong, Sungmin; Burton, Graeme; Hou, Shugui; Moy, Andrew; Edwards, Ross; Loss, Robert; Rosman, Kevin


    Lead (Pb) isotopic compositions and concentrations, and barium (Ba) and indium (In) concentrations have been analysed at sub-annual resolution in three sections from a < 110 m ice core dated to the 18th and 20th centuries, as well as snow pit samples dated to 2004/2005, recovered from the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas. Ice core sections indicate that atmospheric chemistry prior to ∼ 1953 was controlled by mineral dust inputs, with no discernible volcanic or anthropogenic contributions. Eighteenth century monsoon ice core chemistry is indicative of dominant contributions from local Himalayan sources; non-monsoon ice core chemistry is linked to contributions from local (Himalayan), regional (Indian/Thar Desert) and long-range (North Africa, Central Asia) sources. Twentieth century monsoon and non-monsoon ice core data demonstrate similar seasonal sources of mineral dust, however with a transition to less-radiogenic isotopic signatures that suggests local and regional climate/environmental change. The snow pit record demonstrates natural and anthropogenic contributions during both seasons, with increased anthropogenic influence during non-monsoon times. Monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to South/South-East Asia and/or India, whereas non-monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to India and Central Asia. - Highlights: • Pb isotopes in ice and snow show seasonality in Mt Everest atmospheric chemistry. • Local (Himalayan) mineral dust inputs are present year round. • Regional and long-range mineral dust inputs are evident during non-monsoon times. • Snow samples indicate increased anthropogenic inputs during non-monsoon times. • Anthropogenic inputs are linked with Indian, South Asian and Central Asian sources

  3. Seasonal variations in the sources of natural and anthropogenic lead deposited at the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Burn-Nunes, Laurie, E-mail: [Department of Imaging and Applied Physics, Curtin University, GPO Box U 1987, Perth 6845, Western Australia (Australia); Vallelonga, Paul [Centre for Ice and Climate, Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, Juliane Maries Vej 30, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø (Denmark); Lee, Khanghyun [Environmental Measurement and Analysis Center, National Institute of Environmental Research, Environmental Research Complex, Kyungseo-dong, Seo-gu, Incheon 404-170 (Korea, Republic of); Hong, Sungmin [Department of Ocean Sciences, Inha University, 100 Inha-ro, Nam-gu, Incheon 402-751 (Korea, Republic of); Burton, Graeme [Department of Imaging and Applied Physics, Curtin University, GPO Box U 1987, Perth 6845, Western Australia (Australia); Hou, Shugui [Key Laboratory of Coast and Island development of Ministry of Education, School of Geographic and Oceanographic Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093 (China); Moy, Andrew [Department of the Environment, Australian Antarctic Division, Channel Highway, Kingston 7050, Tasmania (Australia); Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre, University of Tasmania, Private Bag 80, Hobart 7001, Tasmania (Australia); Edwards, Ross; Loss, Robert; Rosman, Kevin [Department of Imaging and Applied Physics, Curtin University, GPO Box U 1987, Perth 6845, Western Australia (Australia)


    Lead (Pb) isotopic compositions and concentrations, and barium (Ba) and indium (In) concentrations have been analysed at sub-annual resolution in three sections from a < 110 m ice core dated to the 18th and 20th centuries, as well as snow pit samples dated to 2004/2005, recovered from the East Rongbuk Glacier in the high-altitude Himalayas. Ice core sections indicate that atmospheric chemistry prior to ∼ 1953 was controlled by mineral dust inputs, with no discernible volcanic or anthropogenic contributions. Eighteenth century monsoon ice core chemistry is indicative of dominant contributions from local Himalayan sources; non-monsoon ice core chemistry is linked to contributions from local (Himalayan), regional (Indian/Thar Desert) and long-range (North Africa, Central Asia) sources. Twentieth century monsoon and non-monsoon ice core data demonstrate similar seasonal sources of mineral dust, however with a transition to less-radiogenic isotopic signatures that suggests local and regional climate/environmental change. The snow pit record demonstrates natural and anthropogenic contributions during both seasons, with increased anthropogenic influence during non-monsoon times. Monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to South/South-East Asia and/or India, whereas non-monsoon anthropogenic inputs are most likely sourced to India and Central Asia. - Highlights: • Pb isotopes in ice and snow show seasonality in Mt Everest atmospheric chemistry. • Local (Himalayan) mineral dust inputs are present year round. • Regional and long-range mineral dust inputs are evident during non-monsoon times. • Snow samples indicate increased anthropogenic inputs during non-monsoon times. • Anthropogenic inputs are linked with Indian, South Asian and Central Asian sources.

  4. The GLIMS Glacier Database (United States)

    Raup, B. H.; Khalsa, S. S.; Armstrong, R.


    The Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) project has built a geospatial and temporal database of glacier data, composed of glacier outlines and various scalar attributes. These data are being derived primarily from satellite imagery, such as from ASTER and Landsat. Each "snapshot" of a glacier is from a specific time, and the database is designed to store multiple snapshots representative of different times. We have implemented two web-based interfaces to the database; one enables exploration of the data via interactive maps (web map server), while the other allows searches based on text-field constraints. The web map server is an Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) compliant Web Map Server (WMS) and Web Feature Server (WFS). This means that other web sites can display glacier layers from our site over the Internet, or retrieve glacier features in vector format. All components of the system are implemented using Open Source software: Linux, PostgreSQL, PostGIS (geospatial extensions to the database), MapServer (WMS and WFS), and several supporting components such as Proj.4 (a geographic projection library) and PHP. These tools are robust and provide a flexible and powerful framework for web mapping applications. As a service to the GLIMS community, the database contains metadata on all ASTER imagery acquired over glacierized terrain. Reduced-resolution of the images (browse imagery) can be viewed either as a layer in the MapServer application, or overlaid on the virtual globe within Google Earth. The interactive map application allows the user to constrain by time what data appear on the map. For example, ASTER or glacier outlines from 2002 only, or from Autumn in any year, can be displayed. The system allows users to download their selected glacier data in a choice of formats. The results of a query based on spatial selection (using a mouse) or text-field constraints can be downloaded in any of these formats: ESRI shapefiles, KML (Google Earth), Map

  5. Marine radiocarbon reservoir age variation in Donax obesulus shells from northern Peru: late Holocene evidence for extended El Niño (United States)

    Etayo-Cadavid, Miguel F.; Andrus, C. Fred T.; Jones, Kevin B.; Hodgins, Gregory W. L.; Sandweiss, Daniel H.; Uceda-Castillo, Sandiago; Quilter, Jeffrey


    For at least 6 m.y., El Niño events have posed the greatest environmental risk on the Peruvian coast. A better understanding of El Niño is essential for predicting future risk and growth in this tropical desert. To achieve this we analyzed archaeological and modern pre-bomb shells from the surf clam Donax for the radiocarbon reservoir effect (ΔR) to characterize late Holocene coastal upwelling conditions in northern Peru (8°14′S). Mean ΔR values from these shells suggest that modern upwelling conditions in this region were likely established between A.D. 539 and A.D. 1578. Our radiocarbon data suggest that upwelling conditions ca. A.D. 539 were less intense than those in modern times. The observed coastal water enrichment in 14C may be consequence of frequent strong El Niño events or extended El Niño–like conditions. These ΔR-inferred marine conditions are in agreement with proposed extended El Niño activity in proxy and archaeological records of ca. A.D. 475–530. Extended El Niño conditions have been linked to political destabilization, societal transformation, and collapse of the Moche civilization in northern Peru. A return to such conditions would have significant impacts on the dense population of this region today and in the near future.

  6. CALICE: Calibrating Plant Biodiversity in Glacier Ice (United States)

    Festi, Daniela; Cristofori, Antonella; Vernesi, Cristiano; Zerbe, Stefan; Wellstein, Camilla; Maggi, Valter; Oeggl, Klaus


    The objective of the project is to reconstruct plant biodiversity and its trend archived in Alpine glacier ice by pollen and eDNA (environmental DNA) during the last five decades by analyzing a 40 m ice core. For our study we chose the Adamello glacier (Trentino - Südtirol, Lombardia) because of i) the good preservation conditions for pollen and eDNA in ice, ii) the thickness of the ice cap (270m) and iii) the expected high time resolution. The biodiversity estimates gained by pollen analysis and eDNA will be validated by historical biodiversity assessments mainly based on vegetation maps, aerial photos and vegetation surveys in the catchment area of the Adamello glacier for the last five decades. This historical reconstruction of biodiversity trends will be performed on a micro-, meso- and macro-scale (5, 20-50 and 50-100 Km radius, respectively). The results will serve as a calibration data set on biodiversity for future studies, such as the second step of the coring by the POLLiCE research consortium ( In fact, arrangements are currently been made to drill the complete ice cap and retrieve a 270 m thick core which has the potential to cover a time span of minimum 400 years up to several millennia. This second stage will extend the time scale and enable the evaluation of dissimilarity/similarity of modern biodiversity in relation to Late Holocene trends. Finally, we believe this case study has the potential to be applied in other glaciated areas to evaluate biodiversity for large regions (e.g. central Asian mountain ranges, Tibet and Tian Shan or the Andes).

  7. Atlantic Water advection vs. glacier dynamics in northern Spitsbergen since early deglaciation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Bartels


    Full Text Available Atlantic Water (AW advection plays an important role in climatic, oceanographic and environmental conditions in the eastern Arctic. Situated along the only deep connection between the Atlantic and the Arctic oceans, the Svalbard Archipelago is an ideal location to reconstruct the past AW advection history and document its linkage with local glacier dynamics, as illustrated in the present study of a 275 cm long sedimentary record from Woodfjorden (northern Spitsbergen; water depth: 171 m spanning the last  ∼  15 500 years. Sedimentological, micropalaeontological and geochemical analyses were used to reconstruct changes in marine environmental conditions, sea ice cover and glacier activity. Data illustrate a partial break-up of the Svalbard–Barents Sea Ice Sheet from Heinrich Stadial 1 onwards (until  ∼  14.6 ka. During the Bølling–Allerød ( ∼  14.6–12.7 ka, AW penetrated as a bottom water mass into the fjord system and contributed significantly to the destabilization of local glaciers. During the Younger Dryas ( ∼  12.7–11.7 ka, it intruded into intermediate waters while evidence for a glacier advance is lacking. A short-term deepening of the halocline occurred at the very end of this interval. During the early Holocene ( ∼  11.7–7.8 ka, mild conditions led to glacier retreat, a reduced sea ice cover and increasing sea surface temperatures, with a brief interruption during the Preboreal Oscillation ( ∼  11.1–10.8 ka. Due to a  ∼  6000-year gap, the mid-Holocene is not recorded in this sediment core. During the late Holocene ( ∼  1.8–0.4 ka, a slightly reduced AW inflow and lower sea surface temperatures compared to the early Holocene are reconstructed. Glaciers, which previously retreated to the shallower inner parts of the Woodfjorden system, likely advanced during the late Holocene. In particular, topographic control in concert with the reduced

  8. Geographic Names of Iceland's Glaciers: Historic and Modern (United States)

    Sigurðsson, Oddur; Williams, Richard S.


    Climatic changes and resulting glacier fluctuations alter landscapes. In the past, such changes were noted by local residents who often documented them in historic annals; eventually, glacier variations were recorded on maps and scientific reports. In Iceland, 10 glacier place-names are to be found in Icelandic sagas, and one of Iceland's ice caps, Snaefellsjokull, appeared on maps of Iceland published in the 16th century. In the late 17th century, the first description of eight of Iceland's glaciers was written. Therefore, Iceland distinguishes itself in having a more than 300-year history of observations by Icelanders on its glaciers. A long-term collaboration between Oddur Sigurdsson and Richard S. Williams, Jr., led to the authorship of three books on the glaciers of Iceland. Much effort has been devoted to documenting historical glacier research and related nomenclature and to physical descriptions of Icelandic glaciers by Icelanders and other scientists from as far back as the Saga Age to recent (2008) times. The first book, Icelandic Ice Mountains, was published by the Icelandic Literary Society in 2004 in cooperation with the Icelandic Glaciological Society and the International Glaciological Society. Icelandic Ice Mountains was a glacier treatise written by Sveinn Palsson in 1795 and is the first English translation of this important scientific document. Icelandic Ice Mountains includes a Preface, including a summary of the history and facsimiles of page(s) from the original manuscript, a handwritten copy, and an 1815 manuscript (without maps and drawings) by Sveinn Palsson on the same subject which he wrote for Rev. Ebenezer Henderson; an Editor's Introduction; 82 figures, including facsimiles of Sveinn Palsson's original maps and perspective drawings, maps, and photographs to illustrate the text; a comprehensive Index of Geographic Place-Names and Other Names in the treatise; References, and 415 Endnotes. Professional Paper 1746 (this book) is the second

  9. Modeling the Rock Glacier Cycle (United States)

    Anderson, R. S.; Anderson, L. S.


    Rock glaciers are common in many mountain ranges in which the ELA lies above the peaks. They represent some of the most identifiable components of today's cryosphere in these settings. Their oversteepened snouts pose often-overlooked hazards to travel in alpine terrain. Rock glaciers are supported by avalanches and by rockfall from steep headwalls. The winter's avalanche cone must be sufficiently thick not to melt entirely in the summer. The spatial distribution of rock glaciers reflects this dependence on avalanche sources; they are most common on lee sides of ridges where wind-blown snow augments the avalanche source. In the absence of rockfall, this would support a short, cirque glacier. Depending on the relationship between rockfall and avalanche patterns, "talus-derived" and "glacier-derived" rock glaciers are possible. Talus-derived: If the spatial distribution of rock delivery is similar to the avalanche pattern, the rock-ice mixture will travel an englacial path that is downward through the short accumulation zone before turning upward in the ablation zone. Advected debris is then delivered to the base of a growing surface debris layer that reduces the ice melt rate. The physics is identical to the debris-covered glacier case. Glacier-derived: If on the other hand rockfall from the headwall rolls beyond the avalanche cone, it is added directly to the ablation zone of the glacier. The avalanche accumulation zone then supports a pure ice core to the rock glacier. We have developed numerical models designed to capture the full range of glacier to debris-covered glacier to rock glacier behavior. The hundreds of meter lengths, tens of meters thicknesses, and meter per year speeds of rock glaciers are well described by the models. The model can capture both "talus-derived" and "glacier-derived" rock glaciers. We explore the dependence of glacier behavior on climate histories. As climate warms, a pure ice debris-covered glacier can transform to a much shorter rock

  10. Glaciation in the Andes during the Lateglacial and Holocene (United States)

    Rodbell, Donald T.; Smith, Jacqueline A.; Mark, Bryan G.


    This review updates the chronology of Andean glaciation during the Lateglacial and the Holocene from the numerous articles and reviews published over the past three decades. The Andes, which include some of the world's wettest and driest mountainous regions, offer an unparalleled opportunity to elucidate spatial and temporal patterns of glaciation along a continuous 68-degree meridional transect. The geographic and altitudinal extent of modern glaciers and the sensitivity of both modern and former glaciers to respond to changes in specific climatic variables reflect broad-scale atmospheric circulation and consequent regional moisture patterns. Glaciers in the tropical Andes and in the mid-latitude Andes are likely to have been far more sensitive to changes in temperature than glaciers in the dry subtropical Andes. Broad-scale temporal and spatial patterns of glaciation during the Lateglacial are apparent. In the southernmost Andes, the Lateglacial chronology appears to have a strong Antarctic signature with the best-dated moraines correlating closely with the Antarctic Cold Reversal. The southernmost Andes do not appear to have experienced a significant ice advance coeval with the Younger Dryas (YD) climatic reversal. At the other end of the Andes, from ˜0 to 9°N, a stronger YD connection may exist, but critical stratigraphic and geochronologic work is required before a YD ice advance can be fully demonstrated. In the central Andes of Peru, well-dated moraines record a significant ice readvance at the onset of the YD, but ice was retreating during much of the remaining YD interval. The spatial-temporal pattern of Holocene glaciation exhibits tantalizing but incomplete evidence for an Early to Mid-Holocene ice advance(s) in many regions, but not in the arid subtropical Andes, where moraines deposited during or slightly prior to the Little Ice Age (LIA) record the most extensive advance of the Holocene. In many regions, there is strong evidence for Neoglacial

  11. Glaciation of alpine valleys: The glacier - debris-covered glacier - rock glacier continuum (United States)

    Anderson, Robert S.; Anderson, Leif S.; Armstrong, William H.; Rossi, Matthew W.; Crump, Sarah E.


    Alpine ice varies from pure ice glaciers to partially debris-covered glaciers to rock glaciers, as defined by the degree of debris cover. In many low- to mid-latitude mountain ranges, the few bare ice glaciers that do exist in the present climate are small and are found where snow is focused by avalanches and where direct exposure to radiation is minimized. Instead, valley heads are more likely to be populated by rock glaciers, which can number in the hundreds. These rock-cloaked glaciers represent some of the most identifiable components of the cryosphere today in low- to mid-latitude settings, and the over-steepened snouts pose an often overlooked hazard to travel in alpine terrain. Geomorphically, rock glaciers serve as conveyor belts atop which rock is pulled away from the base of cliffs. In this work, we show how rock glaciers can be treated as an end-member case that is captured in numerical models of glaciers that include ice dynamics, debris dynamics, and the feedbacks between them. Specifically, we focus on the transition from debris-covered glaciers, where the modern equilibrium line altitude (ELA) intersects the topography, to rock glaciers, where the modern ELA lies above the topography. On debris-covered glaciers (i.e., glaciers with a partial rock mantle), rock delivered to the glacier from its headwall, or from sidewall debris swept into the glacier at tributary junctions, travels englacially to emerge below the ELA. There it accumulates on the surface and damps the rate of melt of underlying ice. This allows the termini of debris-covered glaciers to extend beyond debris-free counterparts, thereby decreasing the ratio of accumulation area to total area of the glacier (AAR). In contrast, rock glaciers (i.e., glaciers with a full rock mantle) occur where and when the environmental ELA rises above the topography. They require avalanches and rockfall from steep headwalls. The occurrence of rock glaciers reflects this dependence on avalanche sources

  12. Distribution and transportation of mercury from glacier to lake in the Qiangyong Glacier Basin, southern Tibetan Plateau, China. (United States)

    Sun, Shiwei; Kang, Shichang; Huang, Jie; Li, Chengding; Guo, Junming; Zhang, Qianggong; Sun, Xuejun; Tripathee, Lekhendra


    The Tibetan Plateau is home to the largest aggregate of glaciers outside the Polar Regions and is a source of fresh water to 1.4 billion people. Yet little is known about the transportation and cycling of Hg in high-elevation glacier basins on Tibetan Plateau. In this study, surface snow, glacier melting stream water and lake water samples were collected from the Qiangyong Glacier Basin. The spatiotemporal distribution and transportation of Hg from glacier to lake were investigated. Significant diurnal variations of dissolved Hg (DHg) concentrations were observed in the river water, with low concentrations in the morning (8:00am-14:00pm) and high concentrations in the afternoon (16:00pm-20:00pm). The DHg concentrations were exponentially correlated with runoff, which indicated that runoff was the dominant factor affecting DHg concentrations in the river water. Moreover, significant decreases of Hg were observed during transportation from glacier to lake. DHg adsorption onto particulates followed by the sedimentation of particulate-bound Hg (PHg) could be possible as an important Hg removal mechanism during the transportation process. Significant decreases in Hg concentrations were observed downstream of Xiao Qiangyong Lake, which indicated that the high-elevation lake system could significantly affect the distribution and transportation of Hg in the Qiangyong Glacier Basin. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  13. Methods for Automating Analysis of Glacier Morphology for Regional Modelling: Centerlines, Extensions, and Elevation Bands (United States)

    Viger, R. J.; Van Beusekom, A. E.


    The treatment of glaciers in modeling requires information about their shape and extent. This presentation discusses new methods and their application in a new glacier-capable variant of the USGS PRMS model, a physically-based, spatially distributed daily time-step model designed to simulate the runoff and evolution of glaciers through time. In addition to developing parameters describing PRMS land surfaces (hydrologic response units, HRUs), several of the analyses and products are likely of interest to cryospheric science community in general. The first method is a (fully automated) variation of logic previously presented in the literature for definition of the glacier centerline. Given that the surface of a glacier might be convex, using traditional topographic analyses based on a DEM to trace a path down the glacier is not reliable. Instead a path is derived based on a cost function. Although only a single path is presented in our results, the method can be easily modified to delineate a branched network of centerlines for each glacier. The second method extends the glacier terminus downslope by an arbitrary distance, according to local surface topography. This product is can be used to explore possible, if unlikely, scenarios under which glacier area grows. More usefully, this method can be used to approximate glacier extents from previous years without needing historical imagery. The final method presents an approach for segmenting the glacier into altitude-based HRUs. Successful integration of this information with traditional approaches for discretizing the non-glacierized portions of a basin requires several additional steps. These include synthesizing the glacier centerline network with one developed with a traditional DEM analysis, ensuring that flow can be routed under and beyond glaciers to a basin outlet. Results are presented based on analysis of the Copper River Basin, Alaska.

  14. Neoglacial and historical glacier changes around Kangersuneq fjord in southern West Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weidick, Anker


    Full Text Available The Nuup Kangerlua region in southern West Greenland became eglaciated in the early Holocene and by the mid-Holocene, the margin of the Inland Ice was located east of its present position. Discussion of late Holocene changes in the frontal positions of outlets relies on descriptions, paintings, photographs, maps, data from investigations of Norse ruins, aerial photographs and satellite images.The Kangiata Nunaata Sermia glacier system has receded over 20 km during the last two centuries, indicating a marked response to climatic fluctuations during and since the Little Ice Age (LIA. A large advance between 1700 and 1800 was followed by rapid recession in the first half of the 1800s. Limited data from c. 1850–1920 indicate that although the long-term position of the glacier front remained c. 10–12 km behind the LIA maximum, the late 1800s and the early 1900s may have seen a recession followed by an advance that resulted in a pronounced moraine system. The ice-dammed lake Isvand formed during the LIA maximum when meltwater from the western side of Kangiata Nunaata Sermia drained to the Ameralla fjord in the west. This is in contrast to the drainage pattern before the 1700s, when water probably drained to Kangersuneq in the north. Thinning of Kangiata Nunaata Sermia resulted in total drainage of Isvand between 2000 and 2010 and the discharge of water through Austmannadalen has now returned to the same level as that in medieval times.Other outlets in the region, such as Akullersuup Sermia and Qamanaarsuup Sermia have varied in phase with Kangiata Nunaata Sermia, but with amplitudes of only a few kilometres. In contrast, Narsap Sermia has been nearly stationary and Kangilinnguata Sermia may have advanced until the middle of the 1900s.Lowland marine outlets in south-western Greenland were characterised by large amplitude changes during the Neoglacial. Extreme examples, in addition to Kangiata Nunaata Sermia, are Eqalorutsit Killiit Sermiat at the

  15. Holocene environmental changes recorded in Dicksonfjorden and Woodfjorden, Svalbard: impacts of global climate changes in a glacial-marine system (United States)

    Joo, Y. J.; Nam, S. I.; Son, Y. J.; Forwick, M.


    Fjords in the Svalbard archipelago are characterized by an extreme environmental gradient between 1) the glacial system affected by tidewater glaciers and seasonal sea ice inside the fjords and 2) the warm Atlantic Water intrusion by the West Spitsbergen Current from open ocean. As sediment is largely supplied from the terrestrial source area exposed along the steep slopes of the fjords, the changes in the surface processes affected by glaciers are likely preserved in the sediments in the inner fjords. On the other hand, variations in the influence of the warm Atlantic Water in the marine realm (e.g. marine productivity) can be archived in the sediment deposited in the vicinity of the entrance to the fjords. Since the last deglaciation of the Svalbard-Barents ice sheet ( 13000 yrs BP), the Svalbard fjords have faced dramatic climate changes including the early Holocene Climate Optimum (HCO) and subsequent cooling that eventually led to the current cold and dry climate. We investigate the Holocene environmental changes in both terrestrial and marine realms based on stable isotopic and inorganic geochemical analyses of sediments deposited in Dicksonfjorden and Woodfjorden in the western and northern Spitsbergen, respectively. The two fjords are expected to provide intriguing information regarding how terrestrial and marine realms of the Arctic fjords system responded to regional and global climate changes. Being a branch of the larger Isfjorden, Dicksonfjorden penetrates deeply to the land, whereas Woodfjorden is rather directly connected to the open ocean. Accordingly, the results suggest that the Dicksonfjorden sediment records mainly terrestrial signals with marked fluctuations in sediment composition that coincide with major climate changes (e.g. HCO). On the contrary, the two Woodfjorden cores collected from different parts of the fjord exhibit contrasting results, likely illustrating differing response of terrestrial and marine realms to the climate changes in

  16. First attempt to study rock glaciers in New Zealand using the Schmidt-hammer - framework and preliminary results (United States)

    Winkler, Stefan; Lambiel, Christophe; Sattler, Katrin; Büche, Thomas; Springer, Johanna


    Although not uncommon within the dryer eastern parts of the Southern Alps, New Zealand, comparatively few previous studies have previously focused on rock glacier dynamics and spatial distribution. Neither investigations of their chronological constraints nor any studies on actual rock glacier velocities have yet been carried out. Rock glaciers and periglacial processes still largely constitute a largely unexplored albeit potentially valuable field of research in the Southern Alps. The high-altitude valley head of Irishman Stream in the Ben Ohau Range between Lakes Ohau and Pukaki, roughly 30 km southeast of the Main Divide, contains a few morphologically intact rock glaciers and some appear to be active features (Sattler et al. 2016). Previous work focusing on the Late-glacial and early Holocene moraines in the valley head below the rock glaciers (Kaplan et al. 2010) provided 10Be-ages that could be utilised as fixed points for SHD (Schmidt-hammer exposure-age dating). Apart from detailed Schmidt-hammer sampling on the Late-glacial and early Holocene moraines, two altitudinal transects from the toe to their apex have been measured in detail on selected rock glaciers. On each of the multiple ridges of the rock glacier surface three sites of 50 boulders have been sampled with one impact each by the hammer (an N-type electronic SilverSchmidt by Proceq). Apart from getting some age constraints of these periglacial features in comparison to the well-dated moraines, the Schmidt-hammer measurements also had the aim to provide some insight into their genetic development resulting in a quite complex morphology of the rock glaciers and partial interaction with some of the moraines. Both altitudinal transects reveal a clear and continuous trend of increasing means (i.e. less weathered/younger exposure ages) towards their apex. The values for the individual ridges show, however, a transitional character with adjacent ridges albeit the abovementioned trend not statistically

  17. High-resolution chronology of sediment below CCD based on Holocene paleomagnetic secular variations in the Tohoku-oki earthquake rupture zone (United States)

    Kanamatsu, Toshiya; Usami, Kazuko; McHugh, Cecilia M. G.; Ikehara, Ken


    Using high-resolution paleomagnetic data, we examined the potential for obtaining precise ages from sediment core samples recovered from deep-sea basins close to rupture zones of the 2011 and earlier earthquakes off Tohoku, Japan. Obtaining detailed stratigraphic ages from deep-sea sediments below the calcium compensation depth (CCD) is difficult, but we found that the samples contain excellent paleomagnetic secular variation records to constrain age models. Variations in paleomagnetic directions obtained from the sediments reveal systematic changes in the cores. A stacked paleomagnetic profile closely matches the Lake Biwa data sets in southwest Japan for the past 7000 years, one can establish age models based on secular variations of the geomagnetic field on sediments recovered uniquely below the CCD. Comparison of paleomagnetic directions near a tephra and a paleomagnetic direction of contemporaneous pyroclastic flow deposits acquired by different magnetization processes shows precise depositional ages reflecting the magnetization delay of the marine sediment record.Plain Language SummaryGenerally obtaining detailed ages from deep-sea sediments is difficult, because available dating method is very limited. We found that the deep-see sediment off North Japan recorded past sequential geomagnetic directions. If those records correlate well with the reference record in past 7000 years, then we could estimate age of sediment by pattern matching. Additionally a volcanic ash emitted in 915 A.D., which was intercalated in our samples, indicates a time lag in our age model. This observation makes our age model more precise.

  18. Earth's Climate History from Glaciers and Ice Cores (United States)

    Thompson, Lonnie


    Glaciers serve both as recorders and early indicators of climate change. Over the past 35 years our research team has recovered climatic and environmental histories from ice cores drilled in both Polar Regions and from low to mid-latitude, high-elevation ice fields. Those ice core -derived proxy records extending back 25,000 years have made it possible to compare glacial stage conditions in the Tropics with those in the Polar Regions. High-resolution records of δ18O (in part a temperature proxy) demonstrate that the current warming at high elevations in the mid- to lower latitudes is unprecedented for the last two millennia, although at many sites the early Holocene was warmer than today. Remarkable similarities between changes in the highland and coastal cultures of Peru and regional climate variability, especially precipitation, imply a strong connection between prehistoric human activities and regional climate. Ice cores retrieved from shrinking glaciers around the world confirm their continuous existence for periods ranging from hundreds to thousands of years, suggesting that current climatological conditions in those regions today are different from those under which these ice fields originated and have been sustained. The ongoing widespread melting of high-elevation glaciers and ice caps, particularly in low to middle latitudes, provides strong evidence that a large-scale, pervasive and, in some cases, rapid change in Earth's climate system is underway. Observations of glacier shrinkage during the 20th and 21st century girdle the globe from the South American Andes, the Himalayas, Kilimanjaro (Tanzania, Africa) and glaciers near Puncak Jaya, Indonesia (New Guinea). The history and fate of these ice caps, told through the adventure, beauty and the scientific evidence from some of world's most remote mountain tops, provide a global perspective for contemporary climate. NSF Paleoclimate Program

  19. Effect of Topography on Subglacial Discharge and Submarine Melting During Tidewater Glacier Retreat (United States)

    Amundson, J. M.; Carroll, D.


    To first order, subglacial discharge depends on climate, which determines precipitation fluxes and glacier mass balance, and the rate of glacier volume change. For tidewater glaciers, large and rapid changes in glacier volume can occur independent of climate change due to strong glacier dynamic feedbacks. Using an idealized tidewater glacier model, we show that these feedbacks produce secular variations in subglacial discharge that are influenced by subglacial topography. Retreat along retrograde bed slopes (into deep water) results in rapid surface lowering and coincident increases in subglacial discharge. Consequently, submarine melting of glacier termini, which depends on subglacial discharge and ocean thermal forcing, also increases during retreat into deep water. Both subglacial discharge and submarine melting subsequently decrease as glacier termini retreat out of deep water and approach new steady state equilibria. In our simulations, subglacial discharge reached peaks that were 6-17% higher than preretreat values, with the highest values occurring during retreat from narrow sills, and submarine melting increased by 14% for unstratified fjords and 51% for highly stratified fjords. Our results therefore indicate that submarine melting acts in concert with iceberg calving to cause tidewater glacier termini to be unstable on retrograde beds. The full impact of submarine melting on tidewater glacier stability remains uncertain, however, due to poor understanding of the coupling between submarine melting and iceberg calving.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. M. Manevich


    Full Text Available The paper presents main glaciological characteristics of present-day glaciers located on the Koryaksky volcano. The results of fieldwork (2008–2009 and high-resolution satellite image analysis let us to specify and complete information on modern glacial complex of Koryaksky volcano. Now there are seven glaciers with total area 8.36 km2. Three of them advance, two are in stationary state and one degrades. Moreover, the paper describes the new crater glacier.

  1. Ocean tides modulation of flow at Helheim Glacier, East Greenland, observed using GPS

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Juan, Julia; Elosegui, P.; Nettles, M.

    Observations at high spatial and temporal resolution could be key for improving our understanding of the physical processes that govern outlet-glacier flow variations. We collected simultaneous high-rate GPS observations at several locations distributed along and across Helheim Glacier, East...

  2. Novel sedimentological fingerprints link shifting depositional processes to Holocene climate transitions in East Greenland (United States)

    van der Bilt, Willem G. M.; Rea, Brice; Spagnolo, Matteo; Roerdink, Desiree L.; Jørgensen, Steffen L.; Bakke, Jostein


    The Arctic warms faster than any other region of our planet. Besides melting glaciers, thawing permafrost and decreasing sea-ice, this amplified response affects earth surface processes. This geomorphological expression of climate change may alter landscapes and increase the frequency and magnitude of geohazards like floods or mass-movements. Beyond the short span of sparse monitoring time series, geological archives provide a valuable long-term context for future risk assessment. Lake sediment sequences are particularly promising in this respect as continuous recorders of surface process change. Over the past decade, the emergence of new techniques that characterize depositional signatures in more detail has enhanced this potential. Here, we present a well-dated Holocene-length lake sediment sequence from Ammassalik Island on southeast Greenland. This area is particularly sensitive to regional shifts in the Arctic climate system due to its location near the sea-ice limit, the Greenland Ice Sheet and the convergence of polar and Atlantic waters. The expression of Holocene change is fingerprinted using physical (grain size, organic content, density), visual (3-D Computed Tomography) and geochemical (X-Ray Fluorescence, X-Ray Diffraction) evidence. We show that three sharp transitions characterize the Holocene evolution of Ymer Lake. Between 10 and 9.5 cal. ka BP, rapid local glacier loss from the lake catchment culminated in an outburst flood. Following a quiescent Holocene climatic optimum, Neoglacial cooling, lengthening lake ice cover and shifting wind patterns prompted in-lake avalanching of sediments from 4.2 cal. ka BP onwards. Finally, glaciers reformed in the catchment around 1.2 cal. ka BP. The timing of these shifts is consistent with the regional expression of deglaciation, Neoglacial cooling and Little Ice Age-type glacier growth, respectively. The novel multi-proxy approach applied in this study rigorously links depositional sediment signatures to

  3. The Open Global Glacier Model (United States)

    Marzeion, B.; Maussion, F.


    Mountain glaciers are one of the few remaining sub-systems of the global climate system for which no globally applicable, open source, community-driven model exists. Notable examples from the ice sheet community include the Parallel Ice Sheet Model or Elmer/Ice. While the atmospheric modeling community has a long tradition of sharing models (e.g. the Weather Research and Forecasting model) or comparing them (e.g. the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project or CMIP), recent initiatives originating from the glaciological community show a new willingness to better coordinate global research efforts following the CMIP example (e.g. the Glacier Model Intercomparison Project or the Glacier Ice Thickness Estimation Working Group). In the recent past, great advances have been made in the global availability of data and methods relevant for glacier modeling, spanning glacier outlines, automatized glacier centerline identification, bed rock inversion methods, and global topographic data sets. Taken together, these advances now allow the ice dynamics of glaciers to be modeled on a global scale, provided that adequate modeling platforms are available. Here, we present the Open Global Glacier Model (OGGM), developed to provide a global scale, modular, and open source numerical model framework for consistently simulating past and future global scale glacier change. Global not only in the sense of leading to meaningful results for all glaciers combined, but also for any small ensemble of glaciers, e.g. at the headwater catchment scale. Modular to allow combinations of different approaches to the representation of ice flow and surface mass balance, enabling a new kind of model intercomparison. Open source so that the code can be read and used by anyone and so that new modules can be added and discussed by the community, following the principles of open governance. Consistent in order to provide uncertainty measures at all realizable scales.

  4. Listening to Glaciers: Passive hydroacoustics near marine-terminating glaciers (United States)

    Pettit, E.C.; Nystuen, J.A.; O'Neel, Shad


    The catastrophic breakup of the Larsen B Ice Shelf in the Weddell Sea in 2002 paints a vivid portrait of the effects of glacier-climate interactions. This event, along with other unexpected episodes of rapid mass loss from marine-terminating glaciers (i.e., tidewater glaciers, outlet glaciers, ice streams, ice shelves) sparked intensified study of the boundaries where marine-terminating glaciers interact with the ocean. These dynamic and dangerous boundaries require creative methods of observation and measurement. Toward this effort, we take advantage of the exceptional sound-propagating properties of seawater to record and interpret sounds generated at these glacial ice-ocean boundaries from distances safe for instrument deployment and operation.

  5. An Integrative Approach for Defining Plinian and Sub-Plinian Eruptive Scenarios at Andesitic Volcanoes: Event-Lithostratigraphy, Eruptive Parameters and Pyroclast Textural Variations of the Largest Late-Holocene Eruptions of Mt. Taranaki, New Zealand. (United States)

    Torres-Orozco, R.; Cronin, S. J.; Damaschke, M.; Kosik, S.; Pardo, N.


    Three eruptive scenarios were determined based on the event-lithostratigraphic reconstruction of the largest late-Holocene eruptions of the andesitic Mt. Taranaki, New Zealand: a) sustained dome-effusion followed by sudden stepwise collapse and unroofing of gas-rich magma; b) repeated plug and burst events generated by transient open-/closed-vent conditions; and c) open-vent conditions of more mafic magmas erupting from a satellite vent. Pyroclastic density currents (PDCs) are the most frequent outcome in every scenario. They can be produced in any/every eruption phase by formation and either repetitive-partial or total gravity-driven collapse of lava domes in the summit crater (block-and-ash flows), frequently followed by sudden magma decompression and violent, highly unsteady to quasi-steady lateral expansion (blast-like PDCs); by collapse or single-pulse fall-back of unsteady eruption columns (pyroclastic flow- and surge-type currents); or during highly unsteady and explosive hydromagmatic phases (wet surges). Fall deposits are produced during the climatic phase of each eruptive scenario by the emplacement of (i) high, sustained and steady, (ii) sustained and height-oscillating, (iii) quasi-steady and pulsating, or (iv) unsteady and totally collapsing eruption columns. Volumes, column heights and mass- and volume-eruption rates indicate that these scenarios correspond to VEI 4-5 plinian and sub-plinian multi-phase and style-shifting episodes, similar or larger than the most recent 1655 AD activity, and comparable to plinian eruptions of e.g. Apoyeque, Colima, Merapi and Tarawera volcanoes. Whole-rock chemistry, textural reconstructions and density-porosity determinations suggest that the different eruptive scenarios are mainly driven by variations in the density structure of magma in the upper conduit. Assuming a simple single conduit model, the style transitions can be explained by differing proportions of alternating gas-poor/degassed and gas-rich magma.

  6. Natural and artificial radioactivity in the Svalbard glaciers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pinglot, J.F.; Pourchet, M.


    Natural and artificial radioactivity in the snow of 10 Svalbard glaciers has been measured from 31 ice core samples, drilled between 1981 and 1993. Of these ice cores, seven exhibit the well-known level arising from the fallout of the 1961-62 atmospheric thermonuclear tests. The second level, due to the Chernobyl accident (26 April 1986), has been detected in all the studied glaciers; the maximum 137 Cs fallout reaches 22 Bq kg -1 and shows a high variability. The natural radioactivity, mostly due to 210 Pb, shows an in-depth variation which is not governed by its half-life (22.2 years). These measurements serve many glaciological purposes: absolute dating of the snow layers; air-snow transfer and fallout studies; the determination of mean annual mass balances in the accumulation area of glaciers and their associated spatio-temporal variations. (author)

  7. Holocene climate and fjord glaciations in Northeast Greenland: implications for IRD deposition in the North Atlantic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reeh, Niels


    been released by intensive sub-glacial melting during the long stay of the ice-islands in coastal waters. The Holocene glacial geological record from Northeast Greenland is compared to the record of ice rafted debris (IRD) from North Atlantic deep-sea sediment cores. The comparison shows that transport...... by icebergs in the form of basal debris is unlikely to be the dominant transport mechanism of IRD to deposition sites in the North Atlantic during the Holocene. The ice rafted debris is more likely to be carried at the surface of sea- (or glacier) ice. This supports the result of previous studies by other...... workers that changes of atmospheric and ocean-surface circulation and temperature are the likely causes of Holocene cycles in IRD concentration in North Atlantic deep-sea sediments....

  8. Reconstructing Holocene temperature and salinity variations in the western Baltic Sea region: a multi-proxy comparison from the Little Belt (IODP Expedition 347, Site M0059) (United States)

    Kotthoff, Ulrich; Groeneveld, Jeroen; Ash, Jeanine L.; Fanget, Anne-Sophie; Quintana Krupinski, Nadine; Peyron, Odile; Stepanova, Anna; Warnock, Jonathan; Van Helmond, Niels A. G. M.; Passey, Benjamin H.; Rønø Clausen, Ole; Bennike, Ole; Andrén, Elinor; Granoszewski, Wojciech; Andrén, Thomas; Filipsson, Helena L.; Seidenkrantz, Marit-Solveig; Slomp, Caroline P.; Bauersachs, Thorsten


    Sediment records recovered from the Baltic Sea during Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 347 provide a unique opportunity to study paleoenvironmental and climate change in central and northern Europe. Such studies contribute to a better understanding of how environmental parameters change in continental shelf seas and enclosed basins. Here we present a multi-proxy-based reconstruction of paleotemperature (both marine and terrestrial), paleosalinity, and paleoecosystem changes from the Little Belt (Site M0059) over the past ˜ 8000 years and evaluate the applicability of inorganic- and organic-based proxies in this particular setting. All salinity proxies (diatoms, aquatic palynomorphs, ostracods, diol index) show that lacustrine conditions occurred in the Little Belt until ˜ 7400 cal yr BP. A connection to the Kattegat at this time can thus be excluded, but a direct connection to the Baltic Proper may have existed. The transition to the brackish-marine conditions of the Littorina Sea stage (more saline and warmer) occurred within ˜ 200 years when the connection to the Kattegat became established after ˜ 7400 cal yr BP. The different salinity proxies used here generally show similar trends in relative changes in salinity, but often do not allow quantitative estimates of salinity. The reconstruction of water temperatures is associated with particularly large uncertainties and variations in absolute values by up to 8 °C for bottom waters and up to 16 °C for surface waters. Concerning the reconstruction of temperature using foraminiferal Mg  /  Ca ratios, contamination by authigenic coatings in the deeper intervals may have led to an overestimation of temperatures. Differences in results based on the lipid paleothermometers (long chain diol index and TEXL86) can partly be explained by the application of modern-day proxy calibrations to intervals that experienced significant changes in depositional settings: in the case of our study, the change from

  9. Holocene Paleohydrology of the tropical andes from lake records

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abbott, M. B., LLNL


    Two century-scale time series in northern Bolivia constrain the ages of abrupt changes in the physical, geochemical, and biological characteristics of sediments obtained from lakes that formed during deglaciation from the late Pleistocene glacial maximum. The watersheds of Laguna Viscachani (16{degrees}12`S, 68{degrees}07`W, 3780m) and Lago Taypi Chaka Kkota (16{degrees}13`S, 68{degrees}21`W, 4300m), located on the eastern and western slopes of the Cordillera Real, respectively, contain small cirque glaciers. A high-resolution chronology of the lake sediments is provided by 23 AMS {sup 14}C dates of discrete macro-fossils. Late Pleistocene glaciers retreated rapidly, exposing the lake basins between 10,700 and 9700 {sup 14}C yr B.P. The sedimentary facies suggest that after 8900 {sup 14}C B.P. glaciers were absent from the watersheds and remained so during the middle Holocene. An increase in the precipitation-evaporation balance is indicated above unconformities dated to about 2300 {sup 14}C yr B.P. in both Lago Taypi Chaka Kkota and Laguna Viscachani. An abrupt increase in sediment accumulation rated after 1400 {sup 14}C yr B.P. signals the onset of Neoglaciation. A possible link exists between the observed millennial-scale shifts in the regional precipitation- evaporation balance and seasonal shifts in tropical insolation.

  10. Holocene climate changes in eastern Beringia (NW North America) – A systematic review of multi-proxy evidence (United States)

    Kaufman, Darrell S.; Axford, Yarrow L.; Henderson, Andrew C.G.; McKay, Nicolas P.; Oswald, W. Wyatt; Saenger, Casey; Anderson, R. Scott; Bailey, Hannah L.; Clegg, Benjamin; Gajewski, Konrad; Hu, Feng Sheng; Jones, Miriam C.; Massa, Charly; Routson, Cody C.; Werner, Al; Wooller, Matthew J.; Yu, Zicheng


    Reconstructing climates of the past relies on a variety of evidence from a large number of sites to capture the varied features of climate and the spatial heterogeneity of climate change. This review summarizes available information from diverse Holocene paleoenvironmental records across eastern Beringia (Alaska, westernmost Canada and adjacent seas), and it quantifies the primary trends of temperature- and moisture-sensitive records based in part on midges, pollen, and biogeochemical indicators (compiled in the recently published Arctic Holocene database, and updated here to v2.1). The composite time series from these proxy records are compared with new summaries of mountain-glacier and lake-level fluctuations, terrestrial water-isotope records, sea-ice and sea-surface-temperature analyses, and peatland and thaw-lake initiation frequencies to clarify multi-centennial- to millennial-scale trends in Holocene climate change. To focus the synthesis, the paleo data are used to frame specific questions that can be addressed with simulations by Earth system models to investigate the causes and dynamics of past and future climate change. This systematic review shows that, during the early Holocene (11.7–8.2 ka; 1 ka = 1000 cal yr BP), rather than a prominent thermal maximum as suggested previously, temperatures were highly variable, at times both higher and lower than present (approximate mid-20th-century average), with no clear spatial pattern. Composited pollen, midge and other proxy records average out the variability and show the overall lowest summer and mean-annual temperatures across the study region during the earliest Holocene, followed by warming over the early Holocene. The sparse data available on early Holocene glaciation show that glaciers in southern Alaska were as extensive then as they were during the late Holocene. Early Holocene lake levels were low in interior Alaska, but moisture indicators show pronounced differences across the region. The highest

  11. Little Ice Age climate reconstruction from ensemble reanalysis of Alpine glacier fluctuations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. P. Lüthi


    Full Text Available Mountain glaciers sample a combination of climate fields – temperature, precipitation and radiation – by accumulation and melting of ice. Flow dynamics acts as a transfer function that maps volume changes to a length response of the glacier terminus. Long histories of terminus positions have been assembled for several glaciers in the Alps. Here I analyze terminus position histories from an ensemble of seven glaciers in the Alps with a macroscopic model of glacier dynamics to derive a history of glacier equilibrium line altitude (ELA for the time span 400–2010 C.E. The resulting climatic reconstruction depends only on records of glacier variations. The reconstructed ELA history is similar to recent reconstructions of Alpine summer temperature and Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation (AMO index, but bears little resemblance to reconstructed precipitation variations. Most reconstructed low-ELA periods coincide with large explosive volcano eruptions, hinting at a direct effect of volcanic radiative cooling on mass balance. The glacier advances during the LIA, and the retreat after 1860, can thus be mainly attributed to temperature and volcanic radiative cooling.

  12. Mass balance model parameter transferability on a tropical glacier (United States)

    Gurgiser, Wolfgang; Mölg, Thomas; Nicholson, Lindsey; Kaser, Georg


    The mass balance and melt water production of glaciers is of particular interest in the Peruvian Andes where glacier melt water has markedly increased water supply during the pronounced dry seasons in recent decades. However, the melt water contribution from glaciers is projected to decrease with appreciable negative impacts on the local society within the coming decades. Understanding mass balance processes on tropical glaciers is a prerequisite for modeling present and future glacier runoff. As a first step towards this aim we applied a process-based surface mass balance model in order to calculate observed ablation at two stakes in the ablation zone of Shallap Glacier (4800 m a.s.l., 9°S) in the Cordillera Blanca, Peru. Under the tropical climate, the snow line migrates very frequently across most of the ablation zone all year round causing large temporal and spatial variations of glacier surface conditions and related ablation. Consequently, pronounced differences between the two chosen stakes and the two years were observed. Hourly records of temperature, humidity, wind speed, short wave incoming radiation, and precipitation are available from an automatic weather station (AWS) on the moraine near the glacier for the hydrological years 2006/07 and 2007/08 while stake readings are available at intervals of between 14 to 64 days. To optimize model parameters, we used 1000 model simulations in which the most sensitive model parameters were varied randomly within their physically meaningful ranges. The modeled surface height change was evaluated against the two stake locations in the lower ablation zone (SH11, 4760m) and in the upper ablation zone (SH22, 4816m), respectively. The optimal parameter set for each point achieved good model skill but if we transfer the best parameter combination from one stake site to the other stake site model errors increases significantly. The same happens if we optimize the model parameters for each year individually and transfer

  13. Reconstruction of Equilibrium Line Altitudes of Nevado Coropuna Glaciers (Southern Peru) from the Late Pleistocene to the present (United States)

    Úbeda, J.; Palacios, D.; Vázquez, L.


    automatic functions within the GIS operating environment. To reconstruct the ELAs of the glaciers, the Area x Altitude Balance Ratio (AABR) method was used. This method is extensively described in Osmaston (2005). To determine the rates of deglaciation, variations observed for 2007 in surface areas and ELAs against their values in 1986, 1955 and the Little Ice Age (LIA) were used as geoindicators. Establishing deglaciation rates has allowed forecasts to be made as to when the complete disappearance of ice mass could occur for three future scenarios, considering the hypothetical reproduction in each scenario of the rates of deglaciation observed since 1986 (Scenario 1), 1955 (Scenario 2) and the LIA (Scenario 3). To determine the chronology of the last maximum advance of the glaciers and the last volcanic manifestations, samples were taken from moraine blocks and glaciated rocky thresholds, and also from lava ejected during the last eruption, in the eastern sector of the complex. Due to their recent external appearance, since they have been channeled by glacial valleys and have been affected by ice masses only at the head, these lavas had been dated as Holocene. Absolute dating was performed using cosmogenic methods (Cl36). As a result of applying the proposed method, glacial system surface areas have been estimated for 2007 (47 km2), 1986 (54 km2) and 1955 (56 km2), implying a reduction of ~18% in 52 years. The process appears to have speeded up in the last decades (~13% in only 21 years). Surfaces were also estimated and ELAs reconstructed for the NE and SE groups in 2007, 1986, 1955, the Little Ice Age and during the last maximum advance. Glaciers from the NE group show an area during all periods (2.3, 2.7, 2.9, 3.3 and 30 km2) smaller than SE group glaciers (8.1, 9.9, 10.3, 11.9 and 66.5 km2). An individual analysis of glaciers in the NE and SE groups in 2007 shows a reduction in surface area two to four times greater than that observed between 1955 and 1986. ELAs are

  14. Holocene aridification of India (United States)

    Ponton, C.; Giosan, L.; Eglinton, T.I.; Fuller, D.Q.; Johnson, J.E.; Kumar, P.; Collett, T.S.


    Spanning a latitudinal range typical for deserts, the Indian peninsula is fertile instead and sustains over a billion people through monsoonal rains. Despite the strong link between climate and society, our knowledge of the long-term monsoon variability is incomplete over the Indian subcontinent. Here we reconstruct the Holocene paleoclimate in the core monsoon zone (CMZ) of the Indian peninsula using a sediment core recovered offshore from the mouth of Godavari River. Carbon isotopes of sedimentary leaf waxes provide an integrated and regionally extensive record of the flora in the CMZ and document a gradual increase in aridity-adapted vegetation from ???4,000 until 1,700 years ago followed by the persistence of aridity-adapted plants after that. The oxygen isotopic composition of planktonic foraminifer Globigerinoides ruber detects unprecedented high salinity events in the Bay of Bengal over the last 3,000 years, and especially after 1,700 years ago, which suggest that the CMZ aridification intensified in the late Holocene through a series of sub-millennial dry episodes. Cultural changes occurred across the Indian subcontinent as the climate became more arid after ???4,000 years. Sedentary agriculture took hold in the drying central and south India, while the urban Harappan civilization collapsed in the already arid Indus basin. The establishment of a more variable hydroclimate over the last ca. 1,700 years may have led to the rapid proliferation of water-conservation technology in south India. Copyright 2012 by the American Geophysical Union.

  15. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene glacial events in the Colonia valley, Northern Patagonia Icefield, southern Chile (United States)

    Nimick, David A.; Mcgrath, Daniel; Mahan, Shannon; Friesen, Beverly A.; Leidich, Jonathan


    The Northern Patagonia Icefield (NPI) is the primary glaciated terrain worldwide at its latitude (46.5–47.5°S), and constraining its glacial history provides unique information for reconstructing Southern Hemisphere paleoclimate. The Colonia Glacier is the largest outlet glacier draining the eastern NPI. Ages were determined using dendrochronology, lichenometry, radiocarbon, cosmogenic 10Be and optically stimulated luminescence. Dated moraines in the Colonia valley defined advances at 13.2 ± 0.95, 11.0 ± 0.47 and 4.96 ± 0.21 ka, with the last being the first constraint on the onset of Neoglaciation for the eastern NPI from a directly dated landform. Dating in the tributary Cachet valley, which contains an ice-dammed lake during periods of Colonia Glacier expansion, defined an advance at ca. 2.95 ± 0.21 ka, periods of advancement at 810 ± 49 cal a BP and 245 ± 13 cal a BP, and retreat during the intervening periods. Recent Colonia Glacier thinning, which began in the late 1800s, opened a lower-elevation outlet channel for Lago Cachet Dos in ca. 1960. Our data provide the most comprehensive set of Latest Pleistocene and Holocene ages for a single NPI outlet glacier and expand previously developed NPI glacial chronologies.

  16. How many stakes are required to measure the mass balance of a glacier? (United States)

    Fountain, A.G.; Vecchia, A.


    Glacier mass balance is estimated for South Cascade Glacier and Maclure Glacier using a one-dimensional regression of mass balance with altitude as an alternative to the traditional approach of contouring mass balance values. One attractive feature of regression is that it can be applied to sparse data sets where contouring is not possible and can provide an objective error of the resulting estimate. Regression methods yielded mass balance values equivalent to contouring methods. The effect of the number of mass balance measurements on the final value for the glacier showed that sample sizes as small as five stakes provided reasonable estimates, although the error estimates were greater than for larger sample sizes. Different spatial patterns of measurement locations showed no appreciable influence on the final value as long as different surface altitudes were intermittently sampled over the altitude range of the glacier. Two different regression equations were examined, a quadratic, and a piecewise linear spline, and comparison of results showed little sensitivity to the type of equation. These results point to the dominant effect of the gradient of mass balance with altitude of alpine glaciers compared to transverse variations. The number of mass balance measurements required to determine the glacier balance appears to be scale invariant for small glaciers and five to ten stakes are sufficient.

  17. Appalachian Piedmont landscapes from the Permian to the Holocene (United States)

    Cleaves, E.T.


    Between the Potomac and Susquehanna Rivers and from the Blue Ridge to the Fall Zone, landscapes of the Piedmont are illustrated for times in the Holocene, Late Wisconsin, Early Miocene, Early Cretaceous, Late Triassic, and Permian. Landscape evolution took place in tectonic settings marked by major plate collisions (Permian), arching and rifting (Late Triassic) and development of the Atlantic passive margin by sea floor spreading (Early Cretaceous). Erosion proceeded concurrently with tectonic uplift and continued after cessation of major tectonic activity. Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf sediments record three major erosional periods: (1) Late Triassic-Early Jurassic; (2) Late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous; and (3) Middle Miocene-Holocene. The Middle Miocene-Holocene pulse is related to neotectonic activity and major climatic fluctuations. In the Piedmont upland the Holocene landscape is interpreted as an upland surface of low relief undergoing dissection. Major rivers and streams are incised into a landscape on which the landforms show a delicate adjustment to rock lithologies. The Fall Zone has apparently evolved from a combination of warping, faulting, and differential erosion since Late Miocene. The periglacial environment of the Late Wisconsin (and earlier glacial epochs) resulted in increased physical erosion and reduced chemical weathering. Even with lowered saprolitization rates, geochemical modeling suggests that 80 m or more of saprolite may have formed since Late Miocene. This volume of saprolite suggests major erosion of upland surfaces and seemingly contradicts available field evidence. Greatly subdued relief characterized the Early Miocene time, near the end of a prolonged interval of tropical morphogenesis. The ancestral Susquehanna and Potomac Rivers occupied approximately their present locations. In Early Cretaceous time local relief may have been as much as 900 m, and a major axial river draining both the Piedmont and Appalachians flowed southeast

  18. The Caribbean conundrum of Holocene sea level. (United States)

    Jackson, Luke; Mound, Jon


    In the tropics, pre-historic sea-level curve reconstruction is often problematic because it relies upon sea-level indicators whose vertical relationship to the sea surface is poorly constrained. In the Caribbean, fossil corals, mangrove peats and shell material dominate the pre-historic indicator record. The common approach to reconstruction involves the use of modern analogues to these indicators to establish a fixed vertical habitable range. The aim of these reconstructions is to find spatial variability in the Holocene sea level in an area gradually subsiding (different depths. We use the first catalogue to calibrate 14C ages to give a probabilistic age range for each indicator. We use the second catalogue to define a depth probability distribution function (pdf) for mangroves and each coral species. The Holocene indicators are grouped into 12 sub-regions around the Caribbean. For each sub-region we apply our sea-level reconstruction, which involves stepping a fixed-length time window through time and calculating the position (and rate) of sea-level (change) using a thousand realisations of the time/depth pdfs to define an envelope of probable solutions. We find that the sub-regional relative sea-level curves display spatio-temporal variability including a south-east to north-west 1500 year lag in the arrival of Holocene sea level to that of the present day. We demonstrate that these variations are primarily due to glacial-isostatic-adjustment induced sea-level change and that sub-regional variations (where sufficient data exists) are due to local uplift variability.

  19. From Glaciers to Icebergs (United States)

    Zhang, Wendy

    I will describe works from a collaboration between physics and glaciology that grew out of interactions at the Computations in Science seminar Leo Kadanoff organized at the University of Chicago. The first project considers the interaction between ocean waves and Antarctic ice shelves, large floating portions of ice formed by glacial outflows. Back-of-envelop calculation and seismic sensor data suggest that crevasses may be distributed within an ice shelf to shield it from wave energy. We also examine numerical scenarios in which changes in environmental forcing causes the ice shelf to fail catastrophically. The second project investigates the aftermath of iceberg calving off glacier terminus in Greenland using data recorded via time-lapse camera and terrestrial radar. Our observations indicate that the mélange of icebergs within the fjord experiences widespread jamming during a calving event and therefore is always close to being in a jammed state during periods of terminus quiescence. Joint work with Jason Amundson, Ivo R. Peters, Julian Freed Brown, Nicholas Guttenberg, Justin C Burton, L. Mac Cathles, Ryan Cassotto, Mark Fahnestock, Kristopher Darnell, Martin Truffer, Dorian S. Abbot and Douglas MacAyeal. Kadanoff Session DCMP.

  20. The Inylchek Glacier in Kyrgyzstan, Central Asia: Insight on Surface Kinematics from Optical Remote Sensing Imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohamad Nobakht


    Full Text Available Mountain chains of Central Asia host a large number of glaciated areas that provide critical water supplies to the semi-arid populated foothills and lowlands of this region. Spatio-temporal variations of glacier flows are a key indicator of the impact of climate change on water resources as the glaciers react sensitively to climate. Satellite remote sensing using optical imagery is an efficient method for studying ice-velocity fields on mountain glaciers. In this study, temporal and spatial changes in surface velocity associated with the Inylchek glacier in Kyrgyzstan are investigated. We present a detailed map for the kinematics of the Inylchek glacier obtained by cross-correlation analysis of Landsat images, acquired between 2000 and 2011, and a set of ASTER images covering the time period between 2001 and 2007. Our results indicate a high-velocity region in the elevated part of the glacier, moving up to a rate of about 0.5 m/day. Time series analysis of optical data reveals some annual variations in the mean surface velocity of the Inylchek during 2000–2011. In particular, our findings suggest an opposite trend between periods of the northward glacial flow in Proletarskyi and Zvezdochka glacier, and the rate of westward motion observed for the main stream of the Inylchek.

  1. Precise chronologies of Holocene glacial culminations in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (United States)

    Licciardi, J. M.; Schaefer, J. M.; Schweinsberg, A. D.


    Records of past fluctuations in climatically sensitive tropical mountain glaciers are among the best indicators of regional paleoclimatic trends and controls. The majority of the world's present-day tropical glaciers are found in the Peruvian Andes, but accurate and precise chronologies of past glacial activity in this region remain relatively scarce, particularly during the Holocene. Here we present ~50 new 10Be exposure ages derived from boulders on well-preserved moraine successions in several glaciated drainages in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru (13°20'S latitude). The new results suggest that prominent moraines in these valleys are correlative with previously published moraine ages near Nevado Salcantay in this range (Licciardi et al., 2009), but also expand on the initial surface exposure chronologies to reveal additional periods of glacier stabilization not found in previous work. A provisional composite chronology that merges the new and previously obtained moraine ages indicates at least five discrete glacial culminations from the Lateglacial to the late Holocene. Forthcoming 10Be ages from an additional ~50 samples collected from moraine boulders will increase the precision and completeness of the Vilcabamba moraine chronologies. Basal radiocarbon ages are being developed from bog and lake sediments in stratigraphic contact with the 10Be-dated moraines. These new 14C age data will help constrain the local cosmogenic 10Be production rate, thereby increasing the accuracy of the 10Be chronologies.

  2. Arctic polynya and glacier interactions (United States)

    Edwards, Laura


    Major uncertainties surround future estimates of sea level rise attributable to mass loss from the polar ice sheets and ice caps. Understanding changes across the Arctic is vital as major potential contributors to sea level, the Greenland Ice Sheet and the ice caps and glaciers of the Canadian Arctic archipelago, have experienced dramatic changes in recent times. Most ice mass loss is currently focused at a relatively small number of glacier catchments where ice acceleration, thinning and calving occurs at ocean margins. Research suggests that these tidewater glaciers accelerate and iceberg calving rates increase when warming ocean currents increase melt on the underside of floating glacier ice and when adjacent sea ice is removed causing a reduction in 'buttressing' back stress. Thus localised changes in ocean temperatures and in sea ice (extent and thickness) adjacent to major glacial catchments can impact hugely on the dynamics of, and hence mass lost from, terrestrial ice sheets and ice caps. Polynyas are areas of open water within sea ice which remain unfrozen for much of the year. They vary significantly in size (~3 km2 to > ~50,000 km2 in the Arctic), recurrence rates and duration. Despite their relatively small size, polynyas play a vital role in the heat balance of the polar oceans and strongly impact regional oceanography. Where polynyas develop adjacent to tidewater glaciers their influence on ocean circulation and water temperatures may play a major part in controlling subsurface ice melt rates by impacting on the water masses reaching the calving front. Areas of open water also play a significant role in controlling the potential of the atmosphere to carry moisture, as well as allowing heat exchange between the atmosphere and ocean, and so can influence accumulation on (and hence thickness of) glaciers and ice caps. Polynya presence and size also has implications for sea ice extent and therefore potentially the buttressing effect on neighbouring

  3. Airborne Surface Profiling of Alaskan Glaciers (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set consists of glacier outline, laser altimetry profile, and surface elevation change data for 46 glaciers in Alaska and British Columbia, Canada,...

  4. Rock glaciers, Central Andes, Argentina, Version 1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Primary rock glaciers are fed by avalanche chutes. At the El Salto rock glacier, surveys have been undertaken in order to determine the creep rate. Between 1981 and...

  5. Glacier seismology: eavesdropping on the ice-bed interface (United States)

    Walter, F.; Röösli, C.


    Glacier sliding plays a central role in ice dynamics. A number of remote sensing and deep drilling initiatives have therefore focused on the ice-bed interface. Although these techniques have provided valuable insights into bed properties, they do not supply theorists with data of sufficient temporal and spatial resolution to rigorously test mathematical sliding laws. As an alternative, passive seismic techniques have gained popularity in glacier monitoring. Analysis of glacier-related seismic sources ('icequakes') has become a useful technique to study inaccessible regions of the cryosphere, including the ice-bed interface. Seismic monitoring networks on the polar ice sheets have shown that ice sliding is not only a smooth process involving viscous deformation and regelation of basal ice layers. Instead, ice streams exhibit sudden slip episodes over their beds and intermittent phases of partial or complete stagnation. Here we discuss new and recently published discoveries of basal seismic sources beneath various glacial bodies. We revisit basal seismicity of hard-bedded Alpine glaciers, which is not the result of pure stick-slip motion. Sudden changes in seismicity suggest that the local configuration of the subglacial drainage system undergoes changes on sub daily time scales. Accordingly, such observations place constraints on basal resistance and sliding of hard-bedded glaciers. In contrast, certain clusters of stick-slip dislocations associated with micro seismicity beneath the Greenland ice sheet undergo diurnal variations in magnitudes and inter event times. This is best explained with a soft till bed, which hosts the shear dislocations and whose strength varies in response to changes in subglacial water pressure. These results suggest that analysis of basal icequakes is well suited for characterizing glacier and ice sheet beds. Future studies should address the relative importance between "smooth" and seismogenic sliding in different glacial environments.

  6. Monitoring Glacier Changes of Recent 50 Years in the Upper Reaches of Heihe River Basin Based on Remotely-Sensed Data

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Qiang, Bie; Lei, He; Chuan-yan, Zhao


    The upper reach of the Heihe River Basin was selected as the study area. The distribution data of glaciers in the study area has been automatically derived from topographic maps made in 1960 and from Landsat TM images in 1990, 2000 and 2010 by object-oriented image interpretation method combined with expert knowledge rules. Spatial-temporal variations of glaciers were analyzed with GIS technology. Results show that glaciers have shrunk significantly by 138.90 km 2 during the period from 1960 to 2010. Compared with the data of 1960, 35.6% of glaciers have been retreating and the calculated average rate of glaciers retreating is 2.78 km 2 every year since 1960. The glacial retreating has been most significant if the glaciers have lower-elevation ablation areas and low-elevation accumulation areas. The temperature rising is the key factor of glacier retreating

  7. Aridity of Central Asia through the Holocene (United States)

    Aizen, E. M.; Aizen, V. B.; Mayewski, P. A.; Zhou, H.; Rodda, C.; Joswiak, D.; Takeuchi, N.; Fujita, K.; Kurbatov, A.; Grigholm, B. O.


    The dynamics of aridity in Central Asia for over the past 12,000 years has been analyzed using deep ice core records recovered from the Siberian Altai, Tien Shan and Pamir glaciers. An analysis of aridity in the 20-21 centuries based on the long-term meteorological observations complements the paleo- climate reconstruction. The goal of our research is to examine an aridity (at low and high temperatures) in Central Asia as a complex of characteristics including air temperature-precipitation relationship (Koppen, 1918, Geiger, 1961, Mezencev, 1973), intensity of dust loading and biomass burning. The stable isotope ratio, soluble ionic and insoluble particulate geochemical components and oxalate preserved in ice were considered in relation to climatic and environmental changes; and to determine the main aerosol sources using ground- and upper-level meteorological data. Multivariate statistical methods were employed for examination of the main geo-chemical components responsible for the preserved aridity variability. Insoluble particle concentrations preserved in the ice core were affected mainly by precipitation regimes and wind speed. Concentration of all size particles was found to be negatively correlated with monthly temperatures indicating low temperatures during the dry particle deposition. Two abrupt depletions in stable isotope records, i.e., Younger Dryas and Centurial Sever Drought (CSD), occurred during cold, dry, windy periods of intensified dust storms in large desert areas. When climate became colder and drier, the Central Asian deserts extended, wind speeds increased loading mineral dust to atmosphere, which formed inversion while the convection processes and precipitation occurrence were limited. Warmer and wetter conditions are associated with less dust loading that occurred during the Holocene climate optimum, medieval warm and modern warm periods. The sudden climate transitions are accompanied by the most intensifying mineral dust loading. From the

  8. Contrasting evolution patterns between glacier-fed and non-glacier-fed lakes in the central Tibetan Plateau and driving force analysis (United States)

    Song, C.; Sheng, Y.


    High-altitude lakes in the Tibetan Plateau (TP) showed strong spatio-temporal variability during past decades. The lake dynamics can be associated with several key factors including lake type, supply of glacial meltwater, local climate variations. It is important to differentiate these factors when analyzing the driving force of lakes dynamics. With a focus on lakes over the Tanggula Mountains of the central TP, this study investigates the temporal evolution patterns of lake area and water level of different types: glacier-fed closed lake, non-glacier-fed closed lake and upstream lake (draining into closed lakes). We collected all available Landsat archive data and quantified the inter-annual variability of lake extents. Results show accelerated expansions of both glacier-fed and non-glacier-fed lakes during 1970s-2013, and different temporal patterns of the two types of lakes: the non-glacier-fed lakes displayed a batch-wise growth pattern, with obvious growth in 2002, 2005 and 2011 and slight changes in other years, while glacier-fed lakes showed steady expanding tendency. The contrasting patterns are confirmed by the distinction of lake level change between the two groups derived from satellite altimetry during 2003-2009. The upstream lakes remained largely stable due to natural drainage regulation. The intermittent expansions for non-glacier-fed lakes were found to be related to excessive precipitation events and positive "precipitation-evaporation". In contrast, glacier-fed lake changes showed weak correlations with precipitation variations, which imply a joint contribution from glacial meltwater to water budgets. A simple estimation reveals that the increased water storage for all of examined lakes contributed from precipitation/evaporation (0.31±0.09 Gt/yr) slightly overweighed the glacial meltwater supply (0.26±0.08 Gt/yr).

  9. Holocene geologic and climatic history around the Gulf of Alaska (United States)

    Mann, D.H.; Crowell, A.L.; Hamilton, T.D.; Finney, B.P.


    Though not as dramatic as during the last Ice Age, pronounced climatic changes occurred in the northeastern Pacific over the last 10,000 years. Summers warmer and drier than today's accompanied a Hypsithermal interval between 9 and 6 ka. Subsequent Neoglaciation was marked by glacier expansion after 5-6 ka and the assembly of modern-type plant communities by 3-4 ka. The Neoglacial interval contained alternating cold and warm intervals, each lasting several hundred years to one millennium, and including both the Medieval Warm Period (ca. AD 900-1350) and the Little Ice Age (ca. AD 1350-1900). Salmon abundance fluctuated during the Little Ice Age in response to local glaciation and probably also to changes in the intensity of the Aleutian Low. Although poorly understood at present, climate fluctuations at all time scales were intimately connected with oceanographic changes in the North Pacific Ocean. The Gulf of Alaska region is tectonically highly active, resulting in a history of frequent geological catastrophes during the Holocene. Twelve to 14 major volcanic eruptions occurred since 12 ka. At intervals of 20-100 years, large earthquakes have raised and lowered sea level instantaneously by meters and generated destructive tsunamis. Sea level has often varied markedly between sites only 50-100 km apart due to tectonism and the isostatic effects of glacier fluctuations.

  10. Glacier Change, Supraglacial Debris Expansion and Glacial Lake Evolution in the Gyirong River Basin, Central Himalayas, between 1988 and 2015

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    Sheng Jiang


    Full Text Available Himalayan glacier changes in the context of global climate change have attracted worldwide attention due to their profound cryo-hydrological ramifications. However, an integrated understanding of the debris-free and debris-covered glacier evolution and its interaction with glacial lake is still lacking. Using one case study in the Gyirong River Basin located in the central Himalayas, this paper applied archival Landsat imagery and an automated mapping method to understand how glaciers and glacial lakes interactively evolved between 1988 and 2015. Our analyses identified 467 glaciers in 1988, containing 435 debris-free and 32 debris-covered glaciers, with a total area of 614.09 ± 36.69 km2. These glaciers decreased by 16.45% in area from 1988 to 2015, with an accelerated retreat rate after 1994. Debris-free glaciers retreated faster than debris-covered glaciers. As a result of glacial downwasting, supraglacial debris coverage expanded upward by 17.79 km2 (24.44%. Concurrent with glacial retreat, glacial lakes increased in both number (+41 and area (+54.11%. Glacier-connected lakes likely accelerated the glacial retreat via thermal energy transmission and contributed to over 15% of the area loss in their connected glaciers. On the other hand, significant glacial retreats led to disconnections from their proglacial lakes, which appeared to stabilize the lake areas. Continuous expansions in the lakes connected with debris-covered glaciers, therefore, need additional attention due to their potential outbursts. In comparison with precipitation variation, temperature increase was the primary driver of such glacier and glacial lake changes. In addition, debris coverage, size, altitude, and connectivity with glacial lakes also affected the degree of glacial changes and resulted in the spatial heterogeneity of glacial wastage across the Gyirong River Basin.

  11. Biogeography of cryoconite bacterial communities on glaciers of the Tibetan Plateau. (United States)

    Liu, Yongqin; Vick-Majors, Trista J; Priscu, John C; Yao, Tandong; Kang, Shichang; Liu, Keshao; Cong, Ziyuang; Xiong, Jingbo; Li, Yang


    Cryoconite holes, water-filled pockets containing biological and mineralogical deposits that form on glacier surfaces, play important roles in glacier mass balance, glacial geochemistry and carbon cycling. The presence of cryoconite material decreases surface albedo and accelerates glacier mass loss, a problem of particular importance in the rapidly melting Tibetan Plateau. No studies have addressed the microbial community composition of cryoconite holes and their associated ecosystem processes on Tibetan glaciers. To further enhance our understanding of these glacial ecosystems on the Tibetan Plateau and to examine their role in carbon cycling as the glaciers respond to climate change, we explored the bacterial communities within cryoconite holes associated with three climatically distinct Tibetan Plateau glaciers using Illumina sequencing of the V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene. Cryoconite bacterial communities were dominated by Cyanobacteria, Chloroflexi, Betaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Actinobacteria. Cryoconite bacterial community composition varied according to their geographical locations, exhibiting significant differences among glaciers studied. Regional beta diversity was driven by the interaction between geographic distance and environmental variables; the latter contributed more than geographic distance to the variation in cryoconite microbial communities. Our study is the first to describe the regional-scale spatial variability and to identify the factors that drive regional variability of cryoconite bacterial communities on the Tibetan Plateau. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

  12. Changes of glacier lakes using multi-temporal remote sensing data: A case study from India

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    Kumar Rai Praveen


    Full Text Available The present study used the potential of Landsat multispectral data and ASTER-DEM data to identify the changes of glacier lakes in part of Chandra basin and surrounding of Himachal Pradesh of India from 1989 to 2013. The Barashigri, Chotashigri, Hamtahand Parvati glacier are the major glaciers within the area. The Landsat data of TM (1989 and 2009, ETM+ (2001 and OLI-TIRS (2013 sensors having different band combinations were analysed to monitor variation in the glacier lakes and area of glaciers and terminus whereas ASTER-DEM data was used for relief information. Glaciers terminus and glacial lakes were identified and mapped using false-colour composites (FCC with band combinations of red, near-infrared (NIR and shortwave infrared (SWIR, and a true-colour composite of red, green and NIR, of Landsat TM/ETM+ images and normalized difference water index (NDWI methods. It is observed that the number of lakes in the study area increased by 18.69% during the past 34 years while it was increased from 68 in 1989 to 89 in 2013. During the analysis, it is also found that the snow and glacier covered area within this period is also reduced from 1,317.39 to 1,125.59 km2.

  13. Review article: Hydrological modeling in glacierized catchments of central Asia - status and challenges (United States)

    Chen, Yaning; Li, Weihong; Fang, Gonghuan; Li, Zhi


    Meltwater from glacierized catchments is one of the most important water supplies in central Asia. Therefore, the effects of climate change on glaciers and snow cover will have increasingly significant consequences for runoff. Hydrological modeling has become an indispensable research approach to water resources management in large glacierized river basins, but there is a lack of focus in the modeling of glacial discharge. This paper reviews the status of hydrological modeling in glacierized catchments of central Asia, discussing the limitations of the available models and extrapolating these to future challenges and directions. After reviewing recent efforts, we conclude that the main sources of uncertainty in assessing the regional hydrological impacts of climate change are the unreliable and incomplete data sets and the lack of understanding of the hydrological regimes of glacierized catchments of central Asia. Runoff trends indicate a complex response to changes in climate. For future variation of water resources, it is essential to quantify the responses of hydrologic processes to both climate change and shrinking glaciers in glacierized catchments, and scientific focus should be on reducing uncertainties linked to these processes.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. D. Kitov


    Full Text Available The authors consider the technology for creating databases of glaciers in Southern Siberia and the presentation of these databases on the Internet. The technology consists in the recognition and vectorization of spatial, multi-temporal data using GIS techniques, followed by the formation of databases that reflect the spatial and temporal variation of nival-glacial formations. The results of GIS design are presented on the website IG SB RAS and with the help of Internet service ArcGISonline on the public map. The mapping of databases shows the dynamic of nival-glacial formations for three time phases: the beginning of the 20th century (if you have data, its middle (the catalogs of glaciers and topographic maps and the beginning of the 21st century (according to satellite images and field research. Graphic objects are represented as point, line, and polygonal GIS-themes. Point-themes indicate parameters such as the center, lower and upper boundaries of the glacier. Line-themes determine the length and perimeter of the glacier. Polygonal-themes define the contour of the glacier and its area. The attributive table corresponds to the international standard World Glacier Inventory (WGI. The contours of the glaciers of northern Asia are represented conditionally (ellipses at international portals, and attribute characteristics correspond to the state that was displayed in catalogs of glaciers of the USSR, and they are inaccurate. Considered databases are devoid of these shortcomings. Coordinates of the center of glaciers have been refined. Glaciers contours have boundaries, appropriate to space images or topographic maps, in shp-file format. New glaciers of Baikalskiy and Barguzinskiy ridges are also presented. Existing catalogs and databases still do not include these glaciers. Features of the glaciers are examined in the context of the latitudinal transect of southern Siberia, from the Kodar ridge to the Eastern Sayan. GIS-analysis of the Databases

  15. Late Quaternary glacier sensitivity to temperature and precipitation distribution in the Southern Alps of New Zealand

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ann V. Rowan; Simon H. Brocklehurst; David M. Schultz; Mitchell A. Plummer; Leif S. Anderson; Neil F. Glasser


    Glaciers respond to climate variations and leave geomorphic evidence that represents an important terrestrial paleoclimate record. However, the accuracy of paleoclimate reconstructions from glacial geology is limited by the challenge of representing mountain meteorology in numerical models. Precipitation is usually treated in a simple manner and yet represents difficult-to-characterize variables such as amount, distribution, and phase. Furthermore, precipitation distributions during a glacial probably differed from present-day interglacial patterns. We applied two models to investigate glacier sensitivity to temperature and precipitation in the eastern Southern Alps of New Zealand. A 2-D model was used to quantify variations in the length of the reconstructed glaciers resulting from plausible precipitation distributions compared to variations in length resulting from change in mean annual air temperature and precipitation amount. A 1-D model was used to quantify variations in length resulting from interannual climate variability. Assuming that present-day interglacial values represent precipitation distributions during the last glacial, a range of plausible present-day precipitation distributions resulted in uncertainty in the Last Glacial Maximum length of the Pukaki Glacier of 17.1?km (24%) and the Rakaia Glacier of 9.3?km (25%), corresponding to a 0.5°C difference in temperature. Smaller changes in glacier length resulted from a 50% decrease in precipitation amount from present-day values (-14% and -18%) and from a 50% increase in precipitation amount (5% and 9%). Our results demonstrate that precipitation distribution can produce considerable variation in simulated glacier extents and that reconstructions of paleoglaciers should include this uncertainty.

  16. Morphological characteristics of overdeepenings in high-mountain glacier beds (United States)

    Haeberli, Wilfried; Cochachin, Alejo; Fischer, Urs; Giráldez, Claudia; Linsbauer, Andreas; Salazar, Cesar


    the parameters surface area, length, width, depth, volume, forward/adverse slope and their statistical interrelations are determined with their corresponding uncertainty ranges. For sample (b) basal shear stress (as used in the model), thermal ice types, glacier size/type, relation to flow characteristics (position along flow, confined-unconfined, confluence-diffluence-channel-forefield) are also included. As a principal problem thereby remains the unsolved question of when exactly the overdeepenings had formed (present-day conditions, Holocene maximum stages, ice ages?). Some results nevertheless remain safe. The most striking phenomenon is the high variability of geometries observed with modelled as well as measured forms: small features can, for instance, be deep and large features shallow. Overdeepenings can form under conditions of low to high basal shear stresses at cirque, confluence, channel and terminus positions. Rather than the exact size, locations and general parameter values of overdeepenings from different model runs appear to be robust and comparable. Only weak correlations seem to exist between the investigated geometrical parameters; rather uncertain indications are found of an optimal elongation for maximum depths. Inclinations of adverse slopes do not differ significantly from those of forward slopes and are in most cases far higher than limiting values for floatation within the overdeepenings. Lakes, which fill exposed overdeepenings, can be dammed by huge (lateral/terminal) moraines or may form in polished rock beds but have comparable spreads of geometrical characteristics in both cases.

  17. Holocene Evolution of Qing'ao Embayment, Southern China (United States)

    Switzer, A. D.; Yu, F.; Chen, B.; Zheng, Z.; Wang, D.


    The Holocene evolution of the Qing'ao embayment, Nan'ao Island, southern China, is primarily the result of the interaction of tectonic activity, climate variation and changes in relative sea level. Characterizing the evolutionary history of the relatively small Qing'ao embayment during the Holocene will help improve our understanding of the driving mechanisms of coastal evolution in the area. To reconstruct the Holocene evolution history we analyzed the grain size, loss on ignition (LOI) and carbonate content of modern and core samples. Modern environmental analogs were examined in surface samples ranging from the coastal sand dunes through to offshore. The results of these modern samples suggest that dune sand (mean size of ~2.33Phi) are slightly finer than beach sand (mean size of 2.13Phi), and nearshore sediment is much coarser than offshore sediment (mean size of 5.90Phi). This modern analogs were then applied to 8 percussion cores from the Qing'ao embayment. A chronological framework obtained from 11 radiocarbon samples suggests that the embayment started to accept deposition since early Holocene, ~8500 cal. yr. BP. Three main phases of Holocene evolution were identified. A basin wide shell-rich sand sheet forms the basal Holocene facies and overlies clay rich presumably Pleistocene sediments or bedrock. This facies records an initial sedimentation phase associated with the early Holocene transgression into the embayment (~8500-6000 cal. yr. BP). The basal facies grades upward to a mixed sandy-mud facies which includes lagoonal clayey-silts, flood tide delta sands and records an estuarine phase lasting from ~6000-1000 cal. yr. BP that appears coincident with falling regional sea levels. Coincident with the estuarine phase is a period of coastal dune building recorded as yet undated massive sands that are found in the upper fill. Toward the end of the estuarine phase it is apparent that dune migration has restricted the lagoon entrance and that this was

  18. Reconstruction of Grønfjordbreen dynamics (West Spitsbergen in the Holocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. V. Kokin


    Full Text Available In the past 80 years, the Grønfjord Glacier front retreated for a distance longer than 2.5 km, and thus, a big part of the proglacial zone became free of ice. The detailed geomorphological survey of this zone made pos‑ sible to identify the following landforms: exaration-glacial, glacial-accumulative, exaration-extrusive, pushmoraine (thrusting, fluvioglacial and limnoglacial ones. Geomorphological analysis of the forms indicat‑ ing the Grønfjord Glacier movement and degradation allowed establishing its dynamics over the last glacial cycle. The river running from the moraine-dammed lake erodes a great thickness of a push-moraine (up to 20‑25  m which is composed by marine sediments, accumulated on the site of the present-day proglacial zone under a relatively higher sea level than now. Careful investigation of lithology and stratigraphy of the push-moraine together with radiocarbon dating of marine shells resulted in determination of chronology of the main sedimentation stages during the Holocene within area of the present-day proglacial zone. During the reconstruction evidences of only two stages of the significant Grønfjord Glacier advance were revealed: in the early Holocene (9.5‑10 thousand years ago and in the little ice age (before beginning of XX century, with the maximum advance at the last stage. Basing on the results of the reconstruction the suggestion had been made that during the little ice age the Grønfjord Glacier was a surging one.

  19. What influences climate and glacier change in southwestern China? (United States)

    Yasunari, Teppei J.


    , Song L, Zhang W, Norm C, Cao W, Wilfred H T, Liu H, Wang S, Du J, Xin H and Chang Li 2011 Climate and glacier change in southwestern China during the past several decades Environ. Res. Lett. 6 045404 Qian Y, Flanner M G, Leung L R and Wang W 2011 Sensitivity studies on the impacts of Tibetan Plateau snowpack pollution on the Asian hydrological cycle and monsoon climate Atmos. Chem. Phys. 11 1929-48 Ramanathan V, Li F, Ramana M V, Praveen P S, Kim D, Corrigan C E, Nguyen H, Stone E A, Schauer J J, Carmichael G R, Adhikary B and Yoon S C 2007 Atmospheric brown clouds: Hemispherical and regional variations in long-range transport, absorption, and radiative forcing J. Geophys. Res. 112 D22S21 Sakai A, Nakawo M and Fujita K 1998 Melt rate of ice cliffs on the Lirung Glacier, Nepal Himalayas, 1996 Bull. Glaciol. Res. 16 57-66 Sakai A, Nishimura K, Kadota T and Takeuchi N 2009 Onset of calving at supraglacial lakes on debris covered glaciers of the Nepal Himalayas J. Glaciol. 55 909-17 Scherler D, Bookhagen B and Strecker M R 2011 Spatially variable response of Himalayan glaciers to climate change affected by debris cover Nature Geosci. 4 156-9 Takeuchi N, Kohshima S and Seko K 2001 Structure, formation, darkening process of albedo reducing material (cryoconite) on a Himalayan glacier: a granular algal mat growing on the glacier Arct. Antarct. Alp. Res. 33 115-22 Warren S G and Wiscombe W J 1980 A model for the spectral albedo of snow. II: Snow containing atmospheric aerosols J. Atmos. Sci. 37 2734-45 Wiscombe W J and Warren S G 1980 A model for the spectral albedo of snow. I: Pure snow J. Atmos. Sci. 37 2712-3 Yao T D, Wang Y, Liu S, Pu J, Shen Y and Lu A 2004 Recent glacial retreat in high Asia in China and its impact on water resource in Northwest China Sci. China Ser. D 47 1065-75 Yasunari T J, Bonasoni P, Laj P, Fujita K, Vuillermoz E, Marinoni A, Cristofanelli P, Duchi R, Tartari G and Lau K M 2010 Estimated impact of black carbon deposition during pre-monsoon season

  20. Some notes on the behaviour of tropical glaciers

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    Full Text Available QUELQUES OBSERVATIONS SUR LE COMPORTEMENT DES GLACIERS TROPICAUX. Le fait qu’il soit possible sous les Tropiques de tirer des conclusions quasi immédiates sur le climat à partir des fluctuations des glaciers, en raison du caractère relativement homogène des masses d’air, rend les recherches glaciologiques dans ces régions particulièrement importantes. Une des caractéristiques du climat tropical est l’absence de variations thermiques saisonnières significatives. En tenant compte de ce fait, on évoque la relation climat-glacier sous deux de ses aspects : a la sensibilité de la ligne d’équilibre (ELA aux variations climatiques, et b la réponse correspondante des langues glaciaires. On discute de ces aspects par comparaison avec les conditions rencontrées dans les Alpes. La discussion est fondée sur un modèle de gradient vertical du bilan de masse (VGB. Comparée avec les glaciers des latitudes moyennes, la ELA réagit généralement de façon moins sensible, mais cependant plus fortement à un changement de température. Les langues, comme les petits glaciers réagissent de façon sensible à une ablation croissante. Les réponses à des influences dynamiques à long terme sont peu significatives. OBSERVACIONES SOBRE EL COMPORTAMIENTO DE LOS GLACIARES TROPICALES. El hecho de que se pueda llegar en los Trópicos a una conclusión casi inmediata sobre la evolución climática a partir de las fluctuaciones glaciares, debido al carácter relativamente homogéneo de las masas de aire, confiere a los estudios glaciológicos en esas regiones una grande importancia. Una de las características del clima tropical es la ausencia de variación térmica estacional significativa. Bajo este aspecto general, se trata de dos aspectos de la relación clima-glaciar: a la sensibilidad de la altitud de la línea de equilibrio glaciar (ELA a cambios climáticos y b la reacción correspondiente de las lenguas glaciares. Ambos aspectos son discutidos

  1. A Mass Balance Model of Lyell and Maclure Glaciers in Yosemite National Park (United States)

    Mendoza, K. A.; Stock, G. M.; Sharping, J. E.


    The Lyell and Maclure glaciers, two historically important glaciers of Yosemite National Park, have been rapidly retreating since the late 1800's. I attempted to quantify the water balance of two basins containing these glaciers. Water inputs were calculated by applying snow pillow data and two precipitation vs. elevation slope models. Water outputs consisted of a simplified evapotranspiration model and stream runoff data. Fifty-six linear combinations of precipitation and evaporation were used to develop water balance models. Most of these models predicted melt rates from the two glaciers outside of empirical observations. However, both the Lyell Glacier Basin and the Lyell Fork of the Tuolumne Basin water balance spreads had notable Kolmogorov-Smirnov test statistics: Lyell Glacier with p = 0.34 for 2013 and p = 0.37 for 2014, and Lyell Fork with p = 0.45 for 2009. The basin containing Lyell Glacier had a water balance spread of between -1,105×10^3m^3 and +58×10^3m^3+ (interquartile range) with a mean of -564×10^3m^3 for the 2013 hydrologic year, and between -1,137×10^3m^3 and +21×10^3m^3 (interquartile range) with a mean of-583×10^3m^3 for the 2014 hydrologic year. The Lyell fork of the Tuolumne basin containing both Lyell and Maclure Glaciers had a water balance spread of between-14,350×10^3m^3 and +7,454×10^3m^3 (interquartile range) with a mean of -2,426×10^3m^3 for the 2009 hydrologic year. Variations observed in water balance models for Lyell Glacier in this study are an order of magnitude larger than the expected melt signal, and two orders of magnitude for the Lyell Fork of the Tuolumne water balance models.

  2. Evidence of climatic change during Holocene in the nearshore regions of Konkan (central west coast of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Gujar, A.R.; Guptha, M.V.S.

    grains, variation in the stability index and significantly poor diversity and scarcity of benthic foraminifera. In contrast, during the mid Holocene humid phase, the number of benthic foraminifera was very high. It is also remarked that Ammonia beccarii...

  3. Role of glaciers in watershed hydrology: a preliminary study of a "Himalayan catchment"

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    R. J. Thayyen


    Full Text Available A large number of Himalayan glacier catchments are under the influence of humid climate with snowfall in winter (November–April and south-west monsoon in summer (June–September dominating the regional hydrology. Such catchments are defined as "Himalayan catchment", where the glacier meltwater contributes to the river flow during the period of annual high flows produced by the monsoon. The winter snow dominated Alpine catchments of the Kashmir and Karakoram region and cold-arid regions of the Ladakh mountain range are the other major glacio-hydrological regimes identified in the region. Factors influencing the river flow variations in a "Himalayan catchment" were studied in a micro-scale glacier catchment in the Garhwal Himalaya, covering an area of 77.8 km2. Three hydrometric stations were established at different altitudes along the Din Gad stream and discharge was monitored during the summer ablation period from 1998 to 2004, with an exception in 2002. These data have been analysed along with winter/summer precipitation, temperature and mass balance data of the Dokriani glacier to study the role of glacier and precipitation in determining runoff variations along the stream continuum from the glacier snout to 2360 m a.s.l. The study shows that the inter-annual runoff variation in a "Himalayan catchment" is linked with precipitation rather than mass balance changes of the glacier. This study also indicates that the warming induced an initial increase of glacier runoff and subsequent decline as suggested by the IPCC (2007 is restricted to the glacier degradation-derived component in a precipitation dominant Himalayan catchment and cannot be translated as river flow response. The preliminary assessment suggests that the "Himalayan catchment" could experience higher river flows and positive glacier mass balance regime together in association with strong monsoon. The important role of glaciers in this precipitation dominant system is

  4. Glacier area changes in Northern Eurasia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khromova, Tatiana; Nosenko, Gennady; Kutuzov, Stanislav; Muraviev, Anton; Chernova, Ludmila


    Glaciers are widely recognized as key indicators of climate change. Recent evidence suggests an acceleration of glacier mass loss in several key mountain regions. Glacier recession implies landscape changes in the glacial zone, the origin of new lakes and activation of natural disaster processes, catastrophic mudflows, ice avalanches, outburst floods, etc. The absence or inadequacy of such information results in financial and human losses. A more comprehensive evaluation of glacier changes is imperative to assess ice contributions to global sea level rise and the future of water resources from glacial basins. One of the urgent steps is a full inventory of all ice bodies and their changes. The first estimation of glacier state and glacier distribution on the territory of the former Soviet Union has been done in the USSR Glacier Inventory (UGI) published in 1965–1982. The UGI is based on topographic maps and air photos and reflects the status of the glaciers in the 1940s–1970s. There is information about 28 884 glaciers with an area of 7830.75 km 2 in the inventory. It covers 25 glacier systems in Northern Eurasia. In the 1980s the UGI has been transformed into digital form as a part of the World Glacier Inventory (WGI). Recent satellite data provide a unique opportunity to look again at these glaciers and to evaluate changes in glacier extent for the second part of the 20th century. About 15 000 glacier outlines for the Caucasus, Polar Urals, Pamir Alay, Tien Shan, Altai, Kamchatka and Russian Arctic have been derived from ASTER and Landsat imagery and can be used for glacier change evaluation. Results of the analysis indicate the steady trend in glacier shrinkage in all mountain regions for the second part of the 20th century. Glacier area loss for the studied regions varies from 13% (Tien Shan) to 22.3% (Polar Urals). The common driver, most likely, is an increase in summer air temperature. There is also a very large variability in the degree of

  5. Climate and glacier change in southwestern China during the past several decades

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Zongxing; He Yuanqing; An Wenling; Zhang Wei; Wang Yan; Wang Shijin; Liu Huancai; Cao Weihong; Wang Shuxin; Du Jiankuo; Song Linlin; Catto, Norm; Theakstone, Wilfred H


    Glaciers are distributed in the Nyainqntanglha Mountains, Himalayas, Tanggula Mountains, Gangdise Mountains and Hengduan Mountains in Southwestern China. Daily temperature and precipitation data from 111 stations, together with the records of glacier changes, indicate that temperature patterns during 1961–2008 were consistent with warming at a statistically significant level. Seasonal warming was greatest in autumn and winter. Temperature rise showed a significant relationship with sea surface temperature in the Western Pacific, net longwave radiation flux, altitude, sunshine hours, strengthening anticyclonic circulations in summer and anomalous cyclonic circulation in winter. The increase was more apparent in higher altitude areas than in lower ones. Precipitation variations were less marked than those of temperature, generally showing weak decreasing trends during 1961–2008. Increasing trends were apparent only in spring and winter, when regional trends of precipitation increases with altitude also were evident. The strengthening Western Pacific Subtropical Highs were related to precipitation variation. Against the background of increasing temperature, especially the increasing warming with altitude, the fronts of 32 glaciers and areas of 13 glacial basins have retreated, mass losses of 10 glaciers have been considerable, glacial lakes in six regions have expanded and melt water discharge of four basins has also increased, but these glaciers and basins in our study are only a fraction of the retreating glaciers over southwestern China.

  6. Direct and indirect effects of glaciers on aquatic biodiversity in high Andean peatlands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Quenta, Estefania; Molina-Rodriguez, Jorge; Gonzales, Karina


    to which there is high α-diversity at intermediate levels of glacial influence due to the high degree of environmental heterogeneity caused by glacier water. This α-diversity pattern generates high levels of between-site aquatic community variation (high β diversity) and increases regional diversity (γ......The rapid melting of glacier cover is one of the most obvious impacts of climate change on alpine ecosystems and biodiversity. Our understanding of the impact of a decrease in glacier runoff on aquatic biodiversity is currently based on the 'glacier-heterogeneity-diversity' paradigm, according......-diversity). There is a rich conceptual background in favor of this paradigm, but empirical data supporting it are scarce. We investigated this paradigm by analyzing the different diversity patterns (α, β and γ-diversity) of four aquatic groups (zooplankton, macroinvertebrates, algae and macrophytes) living in high...

  7. Spatiotemporal variability of oxygen isotope compositions in three contrasting glacier river catchments in Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Knudsen, N. Tvis; Yde, J.C.; Steffensen, J.P.


    composition is controlled by the proportion between snowmelt and ice melt with episodic inputs of rainwater and occasional storage and release of a specific water component due to changes in the subglacial drainage system. At Kuannersuit Glacier River on the island Qeqertarsuaq, the δ18O characteristics were......Analysis of stable oxygen isotope (δ18O) characteristics is a useful tool to investigate water provenance in glacier river systems. In order to attain knowledge on the diversity of spatio-temporal δ18O variations in glacier rivers, we have examined three glacierized catchments in Greenland...... of diurnal oscillations, and in 2003 there were large diurnal fluctuations in δ18O. At Watson River, a large catchment at the western margin of the Greenland Ice Sheet, the spatial distribution of δ18O in the river system was applied to fingerprint the relative runoff contributions from sub-catchments. Spot...

  8. Volcanic influence on centennial to millennial Holocene Greenland temperature change. (United States)

    Kobashi, Takuro; Menviel, Laurie; Jeltsch-Thömmes, Aurich; Vinther, Bo M; Box, Jason E; Muscheler, Raimund; Nakaegawa, Toshiyuki; Pfister, Patrik L; Döring, Michael; Leuenberger, Markus; Wanner, Heinz; Ohmura, Atsumu


    Solar variability has been hypothesized to be a major driver of North Atlantic millennial-scale climate variations through the Holocene along with orbitally induced insolation change. However, another important climate driver, volcanic forcing has generally been underestimated prior to the past 2,500 years partly owing to the lack of proper proxy temperature records. Here, we reconstruct seasonally unbiased and physically constrained Greenland Summit temperatures over the Holocene using argon and nitrogen isotopes within trapped air in a Greenland ice core (GISP2). We show that a series of volcanic eruptions through the Holocene played an important role in driving centennial to millennial-scale temperature changes in Greenland. The reconstructed Greenland temperature exhibits significant millennial correlations with K + and Na + ions in the GISP2 ice core (proxies for atmospheric circulation patterns), and δ 18 O of Oman and Chinese Dongge cave stalagmites (proxies for monsoon activity), indicating that the reconstructed temperature contains hemispheric signals. Climate model simulations forced with the volcanic forcing further suggest that a series of large volcanic eruptions induced hemispheric-wide centennial to millennial-scale variability through ocean/sea-ice feedbacks. Therefore, we conclude that volcanic activity played a critical role in driving centennial to millennial-scale Holocene temperature variability in Greenland and likely beyond.

  9. The Holocene Sedimentation in Sandstone Rockshelters of Northern Bohemia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cílek, Václav


    Roč. 11, - (2000), s. 66-69 ISSN 1210-9606. [International Conference on Past Global Changes Upper Pleistocene and Holocene Climatic Variations. Prague, 06.09.2000-09.09.2000] Grant - others:US(XC) National Geographic Society 6330-98 "The last foragers of the Northern Europe" Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z3013912 Subject RIV: DB - Geology ; Mineralogy

  10. Observations of paraglacial processes on glacier forelands in Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park, Southern Alps, New Zealand (United States)

    Winkler, Stefan


    The large and extensively debris-covered valley glaciers in Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park immediate east of the Main Divide in the Southern Alps of New Zealand experienced a substantial frontal retreat and vertical downwasting during the past few decades, often connected with the development of a proglacial lake and retreat by calving. Their Holocene glacier forelands are characterised by huge lateral moraines and multi-ridged lateral moraine systems alongside smaller terminal moraines and frontal outwash heads. Placed within a very dynamic general geomorphological regime of various efficient process-systems, these Holocene glacier forelands are currently affected by substantial paraglacial modification. These paraglacial processes have already caused some consequences for the touristic infrastructure in the area and are likely to cause further problems for the accessibility of established tramping routes, tourist huts, and lookouts in the near and medium future. One of the first steps in a project under development presented here is a detailed visual comparison of changes documented during the past 15 Years on the glacier forelands of Hooker, Mueller and Tasman Glaciers in Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park. It reveals considerable erosion especially on the proximal slopes of the lateral moraines by gully development and retreat of erosion scars at their crest in order of several metres in just a few years. Different processes contribute to high erosion rates, among others rill erosion connected to mid-slope springs that only are temporarily active following substantial rainfall events, efficient gully incision, and slumping. Although any quantification of the actual erosion rates is just preliminary and further studies are necessary in order to make reliable predictions for future development, the amount of paraglacial erosion in this environment is very high compared to other regions and highlights the current importance of the paraglacial process-system in the

  11. Classification of debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers in the Andes of central Chile (United States)

    Janke, Jason R.; Bellisario, Antonio C.; Ferrando, Francisco A.


    In the Dry Andes of Chile (17 to 35° S), debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers are differentiated from true glaciers based on the percentage of surface debris cover, thickness of surface debris, and ice content. Internal ice is preserved by an insulating cover of thick debris, which acts as a storage reservoir to release water during the summer and early fall. These landforms are more numerous than glaciers in the central Andes; however, the existing legislation only recognizes uncovered or semicovered glaciers as a water resource. Glaciers, debris-covered glaciers, and rock glaciers are being altered or removed by mining operations to extract valuable minerals from the mountains. In addition, agricultural expansion and population growth in this region have placed additional demands on water resources. In a warmer climate, as glaciers recede and seasonal water availability becomes condensed over the course of a snowmelt season, rock glaciers and debris-covered glaciers contribute a larger component of base flow to rivers and streams. As a result, identifying and locating these features to implement sustainable regional planning for water resources is important. The objective of this study is to develop a classification system to identify debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers based on the interpretation of satellite imagery and aerial photographs. The classification system is linked to field observations and measurements of ice content. Debris-covered glaciers have three subclasses: surface coverage of semi (class 1) and fully covered (class 2) glaciers differentiates the first two forms, whereas debris thickness is critical for class 3 when glaciers become buried with more than 3 m of surface debris. Based on field observations, the amount of ice decreases from more than 85%, to 65-85%, to 45-65% for semi, fully, and buried debris-covered glaciers, respectively. Rock glaciers are characterized by three stages. Class 4 rock glaciers have pronounced

  12. Monitoring rock glacier dynamics and ground temperatures in the semiarid Andes (Chile, 30°S) (United States)

    Brenning, Alexander; Azócar, Guillermo F.; Bodin, Xavier


    Rock glaciers and mountain permafrost are widespread in the high semiarid Andes of Chile, where they concentrate greater amounts of ice than glaciers. Rock glaciers are of particular interest because in some cases the permafrost they contain might be in a degrading in response to climatic warming. This could result in increased dynamics and even to destabilization, which has been observed on some rock glaciers in the studied area. Displacement rates and active-layer temperatures of two rock glaciers as well as ground surface temperatures of the periglacial environment in the upper Elqui valley have been monitored since summer 2009/10 with funding from the Chilean Dirección General de Aguas. Differential GPS measurements of 115 points on the surface of two rock glaciers since April 2010 showed horizontal displacements of up to 1.3 m/a on the Llano de las Liebres rock glacier and up to 1.2 m/a on the Tapado rock glacier. General velocity patterns are consistent with the morphological evidence of activity (e.g., front slopes, looseness of debris) and for the Tapado complex, a clearly distinct activity from the debris-covered glacier was observed. Temperature measurements in four boreholes indicate active-layer depths of about 2.5 m at the highest locations on the Tapado rock glacier (~4400 m a.s.l.) and about 8 m near the front of the Llano rock glacier (3786 m a.s.l.). Spatial patterns of mean ground surface temperature (MGST) were analyzed with regards to influences of elevation, potential incoming solar radiation, location on ice-debris landforms (rock and debris-covered glaciers), and snow cover duration using linear mixed-effects models. While accounting for the other variables, sites with long-lasting snow patches had ~0.4°C lower MGST, and ice-debris landforms had ~0.4-0.6°C lower MGST than general debris surfaces, highlighting important local modifications to the general topographic variation of ground thermal conditions.

  13. Glacier albedo decrease in the European Alps: potential causes and links with mass balances (United States)

    Di Mauro, Biagio; Julitta, Tommaso; Colombo, Roberto


    Both mountain glaciers and polar ice sheets are losing mass all over the Earth. They are highly sensitive to climate variation, and the widespread reduction of glaciers has been ascribed to the atmospheric temperature increase. Beside this driver, also ice albedo plays a fundamental role in defining mass balance of glaciers. In fact, dark ice absorbs more energy causing faster glacier melting, and this can drive to more negative balances. Previous studies showed that the albedo of Himalayan glaciers and the Greenland Ice Sheet is decreasing with important rates. In this contribution, we tested the hypothesis that also glaciers in the European Alps are getting darker. We analyzed 16-year time series of MODIS (MODerate resolution Imaging Spectrometer) snow albedo from Terra (MOD13A1, 2000-2015) and Aqua (MYD13A1, 2002-2015) satellites. These data feature a spatial resolution of 500m and a daily temporal resolution. We evaluated the existence of a negative linear and nonlinear trend of the summer albedo values both at pixel and at glacier level. We also calculated the correlation between MODIS summer albedo and glacier mass balances (from the World Glaciological Monitoring Service, WGMS database), for all the glaciers with available mass balance during the considered period. In order to estimate the percentage of the summer albedo that can be explained by atmospheric temperature, we correlated MODIS albedo and monthly air temperature extracted from the ERA-Interim reanalysis dataset. Results show that decreasing trends exist with a strong spatial variability in the whole Alpine chain. In large glaciers, such as the Aletch (Swiss Alps), the trend varies significantly also within the glacier, showing that the trend is higher in the area across the accumulation and ablation zone. Over the 17 glaciers with mass balance available in the WGMS data set, 11 gave significant relationship with the MODIS summer albedo. Moreover, the comparison between ERA-Interim temperature

  14. A database of worldwide glacier thickness observations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gärtner-Roer, I.; Naegeli, K.; Huss, M.


    One of the grand challenges in glacier research is to assess the total ice volume and its global distribution. Over the past few decades the compilation of a world glacier inventory has been well-advanced both in institutional set-up and in spatial coverage. The inventory is restricted to glacier...... the different estimation approaches. This initial database of glacier and ice caps thickness will hopefully be further enlarged and intensively used for a better understanding of the global glacier ice volume and its distribution....... surface observations. However, although thickness has been observed on many glaciers and ice caps around the globe, it has not yet been published in the shape of a readily available database. Here, we present a standardized database of glacier thickness observations compiled by an extensive literature...... review and from airborne data extracted from NASA's Operation IceBridge. This database contains ice thickness observations from roughly 1100 glaciers and ice caps including 550 glacier-wide estimates and 750,000 point observations. A comparison of these observational ice thicknesses with results from...

  15. Surface lowering of the debris-covered area of Kanchenjunga Glacier in the eastern Nepal Himalaya since 1975, as revealed by Hexagon KH-9 and ALOS satellite observations (United States)

    Lamsal, Damodar; Fujita, Koji; Sakai, Akiko


    This study presents the geodetic mass balance of Kanchenjunga Glacier, one of the largest debris-covered glaciers in the easternmost Nepal Himalaya, which possesses a negative mass balance of -0.18 ± 0.17 m w.e. a-1 for the 1975-2010 study period, estimated using digital elevation models (DEMs) generated from Hexagon KH-9 and ALOS PRISM stereo images. Accurate DEMs, with a relative uncertainty of ±5.5 m, were generated from the intensive and manual editing of triangulated irregular network (TIN) models on a stereo MirrorTM/3D Monitor. The glacier ice-flow velocity field was also calculated using a feature-tracking method that was applied to two ALOS orthoimages taken in 2010. The elevation differences between the two DEMs highlight considerable surface lowering across the debris-covered area, and a slight thickening in the accumulation area of Kanchenjunga Glacier between 1975 and 2010. The magnitude and gradient of surface lowering are similar among the six glacier tributaries, even though they are situated at different elevations, which may reflect variations in the ice-flow velocity field. The pattern of surface lowering correlates well with the ice-flow velocity field over the debris-covered portion of the main tributary, suggesting that the glacier dynamics significantly affect surface lowering by altering the emergence velocity along the glacier, particularly in the compressive ablation area. Surface-lowering patterns partially correspond to the supraglacial pond area fraction of the glacier, with enhanced surface lowering observed in areas that possess a larger pond area fraction. These findings support the hypothesis that supraglacial ponds may intensify ice wastage and play a key role in the heterogeneous surface lowering of debris-covered glaciers. The estimated mass loss of Kanchenjunga Glacier is moderate compared with other debris-covered glaciers in neighboring Himalayan regions, which may be due to the lower pond area fraction of Kanchenjunga

  16. Rapid thinning and collapse of lake calving Yakutat Glacier, Southeast Alaska (United States)

    Trussel, Barbara Lea

    Glaciers around the globe are experiencing a notable retreat and thinning, triggered by atmospheric warming. Tidewater glaciers in particular have received much attention, because they have been recognized to contribute substantially to global sea level rise. However, lake calving glaciers in Alaska show increasingly high thinning and retreat rates and are therefore contributors to sea level rise. The number of such lake calving systems is increasing worldwide as land-terminating glaciers retreat into overdeepened basins and form proglacial lakes. Yakutat Glacier in Southeast Alaska is a low elevation lake calving glacier with an accumulation to total area ratio of 0.03. It experienced rapid thinning of 4.43 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr-1 between 2000-2010 and terminus retreat of over 15 km since the beginning of the 20th century. Simultaneously, adjacent Yakutat Icefield land-terminating glaciers thinned at lower but still substantial rates (3.54 +/- 0.06 m w.e. yr -1 for the same time period), indicating lake calving dynamics help drive increased mass loss. Yakutat Glacier sustained a ˜3 km long floating tongue for over a decade, which started to disintegrate into large tabular icebergs in 2010. Such floating tongues are rarely seen on temperate tidewater glaciers. The floating ice was weakened by surface ablation, which then allowed rifts to form and intersect. Ice velocity from GPS measurements showed that the ice on the floating tongue was moving substantially faster than grounded ice, which was attributed to rift opening between the floating and grounded ice. Temporal variations of rift opening were determined from time-lapse imagery, and correlated well with variations in ice speeds. Larger rift opening rates occurred during and after precipitation or increased melt episodes. Both of these events increased subglacial discharge and could potentially increase the subaqueous currents towards the open lake and thus increase drag on the ice underside. Simultaneously

  17. Early-Holocene decoupled summer temperature and monsoon precipitation in southwest China (United States)

    Wu, D.; Chen, F.; Chen, X.; Lv, F.; Zhou, A.; Chen, J.; Abbott, M. B.; Yu, J.


    Proxy based reconstructions of Holocene temperature have shown that both the timing and magnitude of the thermal maximum vary substantially between different regions; the simulations results from climate models also show that summers were substantially cooler over regions directly influenced by the presence of the Laurentide ice sheet during the early Holocene, whereas other regions of the Northern Hemisphere were dominated by orbital forcing. However, for lack of summer temperature reconstruction in the low latitude regions like southwestern China dominated by the Indian summer monsoon, the Holocene summer temperature variations and it underlying forcing mechanism are ambiguous. Here we present a well-dated record of pollen-based quantitative summer temperature (mean July; MJT) over the last 14000 years from Xingyun Lake, Yunnan Province, southwest China. It was found that MJT decreased during the YD event, then increased slowly until 7400 yr BP, and decreased thereafter. The MJT shows a pattern with middle Holocene maximum of MJT, indicating a different changing pattern with the carbonate oxygen isotope record (d18O) from the same core during the early Holocene (11500-7400 yr BP), which has the similar variation with speleothem d18O record from Dongge cave, both indicate the variation of monsoon precipitation with the highest precipitation occurred during the early Holocene. Therefore, we propose that the variation of summer temperature and precipitation in southwest China was decoupled during the early Holocene. However, both MJT and monsoon precipitation decreased after the middle Holocene following the boreal summer insolation. We suggest that the high precipitation with strong summer monsoon and hence higher cloud cover may depress the temperature increasing forced by increasing summer insolation during the early Holocene; while melting ice-sheet in the high latitude regions had strongly influenced the summer temperature increase during the deglacial period

  18. Brief communication: Getting Greenland's glaciers right - a new data set of all official Greenlandic glacier names (United States)

    Bjørk, A. A.; Kruse, L. M.; Michaelsen, P. B.


    Place names in Greenland can be difficult to get right, as they are a mix of Greenlandic, Danish, and other foreign languages. In addition, orthographies have changed over time. With this new data set, we give the researcher working with Greenlandic glaciers the proper tool to find the correct name for glaciers and ice caps in Greenland and to locate glaciers described in the historic literature with the old Greenlandic orthography. The data set contains information on the names of 733 glaciers, 285 originating from the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) and 448 from local glaciers and ice caps (LGICs).

  19. Toward explaining the Holocene carbon dioxide and carbon isotope records: Results from transient ocean carbon cycle-climate simulations (United States)

    Menviel, L.; Joos, F.


    The Bern3D model was applied to quantify the mechanisms of carbon cycle changes during the Holocene (last 11,000 years). We rely on scenarios from the literature to prescribe the evolution of shallow water carbonate deposition and of land carbon inventory changes over the glacial termination (18,000 to 11,000 years ago) and the Holocene and modify these scenarios within uncertainties. Model results are consistent with Holocene records of atmospheric CO2 and δ13C as well as the spatiotemporal evolution of δ13C and carbonate ion concentration in the deep sea. Deposition of shallow water carbonate, carbonate compensation of land uptake during the glacial termination, land carbon uptake and release during the Holocene, and the response of the ocean-sediment system to marine changes during the termination contribute roughly equally to the reconstructed late Holocene pCO2 rise of 20 ppmv. The 5 ppmv early Holocene pCO2 decrease reflects terrestrial uptake largely compensated by carbonate deposition and ocean sediment responses. Additional small contributions arise from Holocene changes in sea surface temperature, ocean circulation, and export productivity. The Holocene pCO2 variations result from the subtle balance of forcings and processes acting on different timescales and partly in opposite direction as well as from memory effects associated with changes occurring during the termination. Different interglacial periods with different forcing histories are thus expected to yield different pCO2 evolutions as documented by ice cores.

  20. How do glacier inventory data aid global glacier assessments and projections? (United States)

    Hock, R.


    Large-scale glacier modeling relies heavily on datasets that are collected by many individuals across the globe, but managed and maintained in a coordinated fashion by international data centers. The Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G) provides the framework for coordinating and making available a suite of data sets such as the Randolph Glacier Inventory (RGI), the Glacier Thickness Dataset or the World Glacier Inventory (WGI). These datasets have greatly increased our ability to assess global-scale glacier mass changes. These data have also been vital for projecting the glacier mass changes of all mountain glaciers in the world outside the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheet, a total >200,000 glaciers covering an area of more than 700,000 km2. Using forcing from 8 to 15 GCMs and 4 different emission scenarios, global-scale glacier evolution models project multi-model mean net mass losses of all glaciers between 7 cm and 24 cm sea-level equivalent by the end of the 21st century. Projected mass losses vary greatly depending on the choice of the forcing climate and emission scenario. Insufficiently constrained model parameters likely are an important reason for large differences found among these studies even when forced by the same emission scenario, especially on regional scales.

  1. Glaciers et évolution climatique dans les Andes boliviennes. Glacier de Zongo et glacier de Chacaltaya Cordillère Royale, 16°S

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)


    Full Text Available SEDIMENTOLOGY OF THE HUANCANE FORMATION (NEOCOMIAN OF THE CUSCO REGION AND ITS RELATION TO SEA LEVEL VARIATIONS. The Huancane formation (Neocomian of the Cusco region is mainly composed of quartz sandstones which are deposited in fluvial environments. The facies recognized are organized in a vertical sequence: fluvial sheet sandstones, oxidized or eroded surface, the shale facies of alluvial plain and unusual limestone facies of possible marine origin. These vertical facies sequences show that eustatic sea level variations controlled the fluvial sedimentation. The rivers came from the NE and were fed by the erosion of the Brazilian Shield. The sedimentation developed above the boundary of the SW edge of the Eastern basin, and the Cusco-Puno Swell which had locale horst and grabens inherited from pre-neocomian relief. GLACIARES Y EVOLUCIÓN CLIMÁTICA EN LOS ANDES BOLIVIANOS GLACIAR DE ZONGO Y GLACIAR DE CHACALTAYA, CORDILLERA REAL, 16°S. Por su sensibilidad y su plazo de respuesta breve, el glaciar es de un gran interés para analizar la evolución y la variabilidad actuales del clima entre los trópicos. Se presentan los métodos de determinación del balance de masas y del balance hidrológico, con una frecuencia de mediciones mensual. Los resultados recogidos durante tres años (1991-1994 muestran una grande variabilidad. Ésta es controlada sobre todo por la extensión del periodo de precipitaciones en medio de la temporada cálida que dura más o menos 6 meses. Los eventos ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation son asociados a balances netamente negativos, lo que es demostrado por la respuesta del glaciar al episodio de 1991-1992 y por la reconstrucción de los balances efectuados en base a los datos hidrológicos durante los dos últimos decenios. El retroceso acelerado de los glaciares tropicales desde los años 1980 es vinculado a la vez a una sucesión de eventos ENSO y al recalentamiento atmosférico. GLACIERS AND CLIMATIC EVOLUTION IN

  2. Using Metaphorical Models for Describing Glaciers (United States)

    Felzmann, Dirk


    To date, there has only been little conceptual change research regarding conceptions about glaciers. This study used the theoretical background of embodied cognition to reconstruct different metaphorical concepts with respect to the structure of a glacier. Applying the Model of Educational Reconstruction, the conceptions of students and scientists…

  3. The atmospheric boundary layer over melting glaciers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oerlemans, J.


    Results from a number of glacio-meteorological experiments carried out over melting glaciers are summarized. It is shown that in summer the microclimate of a glacier tongue is dominated by katabatic flow, initiated by the downward sensible heat flux. Characteristic obstacle height is an

  4. Glaciers in 21st Century Himalayan Geopolitics (United States)

    Kargel, J. S.; Wessels, R.; Kieffer, H. H.


    Glaciers are ablating rapidly the world over. Nowhere are the rates of retreat and downwasting greater than in the Hindu Kush-Himalaya (HKH) region. It is estimated that over the next century, 40,000 square kilometers of present glacier area in the HKH region will become ice free. Most of this area is in major valleys and the lowest glaciated mountain passes. The existence and characteristics of glaciers have security impacts, and rapidly changing HKH glaciers have broad strategic implications: (1) Glaciers supply much of the fresh water and hydroelectric power in South and Central Asia, and so glaciers are valuable resources. (2) Shared economic interests in water, hydroelectricity, flood hazards, and habitat preservation are a force for common cause and reasoned international relations. (3) Glaciers and their high mountains generally pose a natural barrier tending to isolate people. Historically, they have hindered trade and intercultural exchanges and have protected against aggression. This has further promoted an independent spirit of the region's many ethnic groups. (4) Although glaciers are generally incompatible with human development and habitation, many of the HKH region's glaciers and their mountains have become sanctuaries and transit routes for militants. Siachen Glacier in Kashmir has for 17 years been "the world's highest battlefield," with tens of thousands of troops deployed on both sides of the India/Pakistan line of control. In 1999, that conflict threatened to trigger all-out warfare, and perhaps nuclear warfare. Other recent terrorist and military action has taken place on glaciers in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. As terrorists are forced from easily controlled territories, many may tend to migrate toward the highest ground, where definitive encounters may take place in severe alpine glacial environments. This should be a major concern in Nepali security planning, where an Army offensive is attempting to reign in an increasingly robust and brutal

  5. An inventory and estimate of water stored in firn fields, glaciers, debris-covered glaciers, and rock glaciers in the Aconcagua River Basin, Chile (United States)

    Janke, Jason R.; Ng, Sam; Bellisario, Antonio


    An inventory of firn fields, glaciers, debris-covered glaciers, and rock glaciers was conducted in the Aconcagua River Basin of the semiarid Andes of central Chile. A total of 916 landforms were identified, of which rock glaciers were the most abundant (669) and occupied the most total area. Glaciers and debris-covered glaciers were less numerous, but were about five times larger in comparison. The total area occupied by glaciers and debris-covered glaciers was roughly equivalent to the total area of rock glaciers. Debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers were subcategorized into six ice-content classes based on interpretation of surface morphology with high-resolution satellite imagery. Over 50% of rock glaciers fell within a transitional stage; 85% of debris-covered glaciers were either fully covered or buried. Most landforms occupied elevations between 3500 and 4500 m. Glaciers and firn occurred at higher elevations compared to rock glaciers and debris-covered glaciers. Rock glaciers had a greater frequency in the northern part of the study area where arid climate conditions exist. Firn and glaciers were oriented south, debris-covered glaciers west, and rock glaciers southwest. An analysis of water contribution of each landform in the upper Andes of the Aconcagua River Basin was conducted using formulas that associate the size of the landforms to estimates of water stored. Minimum and maximum water storage was calculated based on a range of debris to ice content ratios for debris-covered glaciers and rock glaciers. In the Aconcagua River Basin, rock glaciers accounted for 48 to 64% of the water stored within the landforms analyzed; glaciers accounted for 15 to 25%; debris-covered glaciers were estimated at 15 to 19%; firn fields contained only about 5 to 8% of the water stored. Expansion of agriculture, prolonged drought, and removal of ice-rich landforms for mining have put additional pressure on already scarce water resources. To develop long

  6. Late Pleistocene to early Holocene environmental changes on Store Koldewey, coastal north-east Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Klug


    Full Text Available A lake sediment sequence from southern Store Koldewey, north-east Greenland, has been investigated using a multidisciplinary approach, including geophysical, geochemical, biogeochemical, biological and sedimentological methods. Chronological constraints are provided by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS 14C dating of bulk sediment and complemented with published water moss ages. The record consists of three major sediment units. Their individual structural, textural, geophysical and geochemical characteristics indicate variable input of sediment and meltwater due to variable proximity of the ice margin and therefore reflect the growth and decay of a local glacier during the late Weichselian. Radiocarbon dating of bulk sediment samples from the lowermost unit gave ages of 42 to 34 calibrated thousand years (cal Ky B.P. and indicates that this material is redeposited in the lake basin during or after the ice advance at the end of the Pleistocene. Increased meltwater and sediment input from a retreating ice margin following the Younger Dryas is indicated by the occurrence of a sandy to gravely section. Fine-grained and laminated sediments were deposited during the Pleistocene–Holocene transition and indicate calm sedimentation conditions with an ice margin outside of the lake catchment. The reoccurrence of coarse sediments during the early Holocene may indicate increased meltwater input in response to the cold spell at about 9.3 Kya with increased snow accumulation rather than fluctuations of local glaciers. The dating results furthermore show that AMS 14C dating of bulk sediment samples deposited during glacier decay in High Arctic environments can give problematic ages.

  7. Holocene Temperature Reconstructions from Arctic Lakes based on Alkenone Paleothermometry and Non-Destructive Scanning Techniques (United States)

    D'Andrea, W. J.; Balascio, N. L.; Bradley, R. S.; Bakke, J.; Gjerde, M.; Kaufman, D. S.; Briner, J. P.; von Gunten, L.


    Generating continuous, accurate and quantitative Holocene temperature estimates from the Arctic is an ongoing challenge. In many Arctic regions, tree ring-based approaches cannot be used and lake sediments provide the most valuable repositories for extracting paleotemperature information. Advances in lacustrine alkenone paleothermometry now allow for quantitative reconstruction of lake-water temperature based on the UK37 values of sedimentary alkenones. In addition, a recent study demonstrated the efficacy of non-destructive scanning reflectance spectroscopy in the visible range (VIS-RS) for high-resolution quantitative temperature reconstruction from arctic lake sediments1. In this presentation, I will report a new UK37-based temperature reconstruction and a scanning VIS-RS record (using the RABD660;670 index as a measure of sedimentary chlorin content) from Kulusuk Lake in southeastern Greenland (65.6°N, 37.1°W). The UK37 record reveals a ~3°C increase in summer lake water temperatures between ~10ka and ~7ka followed by sustained warmth until ~4ka and a gradual (~3°C) cooling until ~400 yr BP. The strong correlation between UK37 and RABD660;670 measured in the same sediment core provides further evidence that in arctic lakes where temperature regulates primary productivity, and thereby sedimentary chlorin content, these proxies can be combined to develop high-resolution quantitative temperature records. The Holocene temperature history of Kulusuk Lake determined using this approach corresponds to changes in the size of the glaciers adjacent to the lake, as inferred from sediment minerogenic properties measured with scanning XRF. Glaciers retreated during early Holocene warming, likely disappeared during the period of mid-Holocene warmth, and advanced after 4ka. I will also discuss new UK37 and RABD660;670 reconstructions from northwestern Svalbard and the central Brooks Range of Alaska within the framework of published regional temperature reconstructions and

  8. Holocene stratigraphy and vegetation history in the Scoresby Sund area, East Greenland

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Funder, S.


    The Holocene stratigraphy in Scoresby Sund is based on climatic change reflected by fluctuations in fjord and valley glaciers, immigration and extinction of marine molluscs, and the vegetation history recorded in pollen diagrams from five lakes. The histories are dated by C-14, and indirectly by emergence curves showing the patterns of isostatic uplift. From c. 10100-10400 to 9400 yr BP the major fjord glaciers showed oscillatory retreat with abundant moraine formation, the period of the Milne Land Moraines. The vegetation in the ice free areas was a sparse type of fell field vetetation but with thermophilous elements indicating temperatures similar to the present. From 9400 yr BP the fjord glaciers retreated rapidly in the narrow fjords, the few moraines formed are referred to the Roedefjord stages and indicate topographically conditioned stillstands. At 8000 yr BP the low arctic Betula nana imigrated into the area, and in the period until 5000 yr BP dense dwarf shrub heat grew in areas where it is now absent. In the fjords the subarctic Mytilus edulis and Pecten islandia lived, suggesting a climate warmer than the present. From c. 5000 yr BP the dense dwarf shrub heath began to disappear in the coastal areas, and a ''poor'' heat dominated by the high arctic Salix Arctica and Cassiope tetragona expanded. These two species, which are now extremely common, apparently did not grow in the area until c. 6000 yr BP. In lakes in the coastal area minerogenic sedimentation at c. 2800 yr BP, reflecting the general climatic deterioration. (author)

  9. Identification of Holocene millennial-scale forcing in the North Atlantic area: Ocean/atmosphere contribution (United States)

    Debret, M.; Masson-Delmotte, V.; Christophe, C.; de Vernal, A.; Massei, N.; Eynaud, F.; Nicolle, M.; Frank, N.; Mary, Y.; Magny, M.


    Millennial (1500-year) cycles were evidenced decades ago from the advance and retreat of glaciers but many subsequent studies failed to demonstrate the unequivocal character of such oscillation from paleoclimate time series. Hence, the identification of a persistent 1500 year periodicity remains controversial both for the last glacial episode and the Holocene. Applying wavelet analysis to Holocene climate records, we have identified synchronous millennial-scale oscillations which permit to establish a North Atlantic millennial variability index (NAV-Index), maximum at 5330 ± 245, 3560 ± 190, 1810 ± 160 cal years BP and minimum at 4430 ± 250, 2640 ± 225 and 970 ± 200 years before present. This NAV-index was compared with the millennial variability of cosmogenic 10Be isotope, a proxy of solar activity. Differences between the two sets of records suggest that an internal mechanism (Ocean/atmosphere) must be at the origin of the North Atlantic millennial scale variability. Our data document an increased coherence and magnitude of the North Atlantic millennial variability since 6000 cal. years BP, with a frequency of 1780 ± 240 years. During the early Holocene, deglacial meltwater fluxes had strong regional impact and the coupling between subpolar gyre migration and Atlantic meridional oceanic circulation observed since afterward seems to be related to the end of the Laurentide and Inuitian ice sheet meltwater discharge. Hence, we may conclude that the evolution of this millennial oscillation in the future will depend upon the Greenland stability or melting.

  10. Response of small glaciers to climate change: runoff from glaciers of the Wind River range, Wyoming (United States)

    Bliss, A. K.; Stamper, B.


    Runoff from glaciers affects downstream ecosystems by influencing the quantity, seasonality, and chemistry of the water. We describe the present state of glaciers in the Wind River range, Wyoming and consider how these glaciers will change in the future. Wind River glaciers have been losing mass in recent decades, as seen with geodetic techniques and by examining glacier morphology. Interestingly, the 2016/7 winter featured one of the largest snowfalls on record. Our primary focus is the Dinwoody Glacier ( 3 km^2, 3300-4000 m above sea level). We present data collected in mid-August 2017 including glacier ablation rates, snow line elevations, and streamflow. We compare measured glacier mass loss to streamflow at the glacier terminus and at a USGS stream gauge farther downstream. Using a hydrological model, we explore the fate of glacial runoff as it moves into downstream ecosystems and through ranchlands important to local people. The techniques used here can be applied to similar small-glacier systems in other parts of the world.

  11. Seasonal variability of organic matter composition in an Alaskan glacier outflow: insights into glacier carbon sources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spencer, Robert G M; Vermilyea, Andrew; Fellman, Jason; Hood, Eran; Raymond, Peter; Stubbins, Aron; Scott, Durelle


    Glacier ecosystems are a significant source of bioavailable, yet ancient dissolved organic carbon (DOC). Characterizing DOC in Mendenhall Glacier outflow (southeast Alaska) we document a seasonal persistence to the radiocarbon-depleted signature of DOC, highlighting ancient DOC as a ubiquitous feature of glacier outflow. We observed no systematic depletion in Δ 14 C-DOC with increasing discharge during the melt season that would suggest mobilization of an aged subglacial carbon store. However, DOC concentration, δ 13 C-DOC, Δ 14 C-DOC and fluorescence signatures appear to have been influenced by runoff from vegetated hillslopes above the glacier during onset and senescence of melt. In the peak glacier melt period, the Δ 14 C-DOC of stream samples at the outflow (−181.7 to −355.3‰) was comparable to the Δ 14 C-DOC for snow samples from the accumulation zone (−207.2 to −390.9‰), suggesting that ancient DOC from the glacier surface is exported in glacier runoff. The pre-aged DOC in glacier snow and runoff is consistent with contributions from fossil fuel combustion sources similar to those documented previously in ice cores and thus provides evidence for anthropogenic perturbation of the carbon cycle. Overall, our results emphasize the need to further characterize DOC inputs to glacier ecosystems, particularly in light of predicted changes in glacier mass and runoff in the coming century. (papers)

  12. Ocean impact on Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier, Northeast Greenland (United States)

    Schaffer, Janin; Kanzow, Torsten; von Appen, Wilken-Jon; Mayer, Christoph


    The ocean plays an important role in modulating the mass balance of the Greenland Ice Sheet by delivering heat to the marine-terminating outlet glaciers around Greenland. The largest of three outlet glaciers draining the Northeast Greenland Ice Stream is Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier (also referred to as 79 North Glacier). Historic observations showed that warm waters of Atlantic origin are present in the subglacial cavity below the 80 km long floating ice tongue of the Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier and cause strong basal melt at the grounding line, but to date it has been unknown how those warm water enter the cavity. In order to understand how Atlantic origin waters carry heat into the subglacial cavity beneath Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier, we performed bathymetric, hydrographic, and velocity observations in the vicinity of the main glacier calving front aboard RV Polarstern in summer 2016. The bathymetric multibeam data shows a 500 m deep and 2 km narrow passage downstream of a 310 m deep sill. This turned out to be the only location deep enough for an exchange of Atlantic waters between the glacier cavity and the continental shelf. Hydrographic and velocity measurements revealed a density driven plume in the vicinity of the glacier calving front causing a rapid flow of waters of Atlantic origin warmer 1°C into the subglacial cavity through the 500 m deep passage. In addition, glacially modified waters flow out of the glacier cavity below the 80 m deep ice base. In the vicinity of the glacier, the glacially modified waters form a distinct mixed layer situated above the Atlantic waters and below the ambient Polar water. At greater distances from the glacier this layer is eroded by lateral mixing with ambient water. Based on our observations we will present an estimate of the ocean heat transport into the subglacial cavity. In comparison with historic observations we find an increase in Atlantic water temperatures throughout the last 20 years. The resulting

  13. Glacier extent in sub-Antarctic Kerguelen archipelago from MIS 3 period: Evidence from 36Cl dating (United States)

    Jomelli, Vincent; Schimmelpfennig, Irene; Favier, Vincent; Mokadem, Fatima; Landais, Amaelle; Rinterknecht, Vincent; Brunstein, Daniel; Verfaillie, Deborah; Legentil, Claude; Aumaitre, Georges; Bourlès, Didier L.; Keddadouche, Karim


    Documenting sub-Antarctic glacier variations during the local last glacial maximum is of major interest to better understand their sensitivity to atmospheric and oceanic temperature changes in conjunction with Antarctic ice sheet changes. However, data are sparse because evidence of earlier glacier extents is for most sub-Antarctic islands located offshore making their observation complex. Here, we present 22 cosmogenic 36Cl surface exposure ages obtained from five sites at Kerguelen to document the glacial history. The 36Cl ages from roche moutonnee surfaces, erratics and boulders collected on moraines span from 41.9 ± 4.4 ka to 14.3 ± 1.1 ka. Ice began to retreat on the eastern part of the main island before 41.4 ± 4.4 ka. Slow deglaciation occurred from ∼41 to ∼29 ka. There is no evidence of advances between 29 ka and the Antarctic Cold Reversal (ACR) period (∼14.5-12.9 ka) period. During the ACR, however, the Bontemps and possibly Belvedere moraines were formed by the advance of a Cook Ice Cap outlet glacier and a local glacier on the Presque Ile Jeanne d'Arc, respectively. This glacier evolution differs partly from that of glaciers in New Zealand and in Patagonia. These asynchronous glacier changes in the sub-Antarctic region are however in agreement with sea surface temperature changes recorded around Antarctica, which suggest differences in the climate evolution of the Indo-Pacific and Atlantic sectors of Antarctica.

  14. Consistent increase in High Asia's runoff due to increasing glacier melt and precipitation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lutz, A. F.; Immerzeel, W. W.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/290472113; Shrestha, A. B.; Bierkens, M. F P|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/125022794

    Rivers originating in the high mountains of Asia are among the most meltwater-dependent river systems on Earth, yet large human populations depend on their resources downstream1. Across High Asias river basins, there is large variation in the contribution of glacier and snow melt to total runoff 2,

  15. Glaciers in Patagonia: Controversy and prospects (United States)

    Kargel, J. S.; Alho, P.; Buytaert, W.; Célleri, R.; Cogley, J. G.; Dussaillant, A.; Guido, Z.; Haeberli, W.; Harrison, S.; Leonard, G.; Maxwell, A.; Meier, C.; Poveda, G.; Reid, B.; Reynolds, J.; Rodríguez, C. A. Portocarrero; Romero, H.; Schneider, J.


    Lately, glaciers have been subjects of unceasing controversy. Current debate about planned hydroelectric facilities—a US7- to 10-billion megaproject—in a pristine glacierized area of Patagonia, Chile [Romero Toledo et al., 2009; Vince, 2010], has raised anew the matter of how glaciologists and global change experts can contribute their knowledge to civic debates on important issues. There has been greater respect for science in this controversy than in some previous debates over projects that pertain to glaciers, although valid economic motivations again could trump science and drive a solution to the energy supply problem before the associated safety and environmental problems are understood. The connection between glaciers and climate change—both anthropogenic and natural—is fundamental to glaciology and to glaciers' practical importance for water and hydropower resources, agriculture, tourism, mining, natural hazards, ecosystem conservation, and sea level [Buytaert et al., 2010; Glasser et al., 2011]. The conflict between conservation and development can be sharper in glacierized regions than almost anywhere else. Glaciers occur in spectacular natural landscapes, but they also supply prodigious exploitable meltwater.

  16. Role of glacier runoff in the Heihe Basin


    坂井, 亜規子; 藤田, 耕史; 中尾, 正義; YAO, Tandong


    We estimated the fluctuation of precipitation and air temperature from Dunde ice core data since 1606 comparing to meteorological data taken near the July 1st glacier since 1930s. Then, we calculated the discharges from glaciers and glacier-free areaFurthermore, we analyzed the sensitivity of those discharges to meteorological factor. The result revealed that calculated discharge from glacier-free area increased with precipitation. Meanwhile, calculated discharge from glaciers decreased with ...

  17. Glacier Instability, Rapid Glacier Lake Growth and Related Hazards at Belvedere Glacier, Macugnaga, Italy (United States)

    Huggel, C.; Kaeaeb, A.; Haeberli, W.; Mortara, G.; Chiarle, M.; Epifani, F.


    Starting in summer 2000, Belvedere Glacier, near Macugnaga, Italian Alps, developed an extraordinary change in flow, geometry and surface appearance. A surge-type flow acceleration started in the lower parts of the Monte-Rosa east face, leading to strong crevassing and deformation of Belvedere Glacier, accompanied by bulging of its orographic right margin. In September 2001, a small supraglacial lake developed on the glacier. High water pressure and accelerated movement lasted into winter 2001/2002. The ice, in places, started to override moraines from the Little Ice Age. In late spring and early summer 2002, the supraglacial lake grew at extraordinary rates reaching a maximum area of more than 150'000 m2 by end of June. The evolution of such a large supraglacial lake, a rather unique feature in the Alps, was probably enabled by changes in the subglacial drainage system in the course of the surge-like developments with high water pressure in the glacier. At the end of June, an enhanced growth of the lake level with a rise of about 1 m per day was observed such that the supraglacial lake became a urgent hazard problem for the community of Macugnaga. Emergency measures had to be taken by the Italian Civil Protection. The authors thereby acted as the official expert advisers. Temporal evacuations were ordered and a permanent monitoring and alarm system was installed. Pumps with a maximum output of 1 m3/s were brought to the lake. Bathymetric studies yielded a maximum lake depth of 55 m and a volume of 3.3 millions of cubic meters of water. Aerial photography of 1995, 1999, September 2001 and October 2001 was used to calculate ice flow velocities and changes in surface altitude. Compared to the period of 1995 to 1999, the flow accelerated by about five times in 2001 (max. speeds up to 200 m/yr). Surface uplift measured was about 10-15 m/yr. The results of the photogrammetric studies were used to evaluate different possible lake-outburst scenarios, in particular

  18. Holocene reef development where wave energy reduces accommodation (United States)

    Grossman, Eric E.; Fletcher, Charles H.


    Analyses of 32 drill cores obtained from the windward reef of Kailua Bay, Oahu, Hawaii, indicate that high wave energy significantly reduced accommodation space for reef development in the Holocene and produced variable architecture because of the combined influence of sea-level history and wave exposure over a complex antecedent topography. A paleostream valley within the late Pleistocene insular limestone shelf provided accommodation space for more than 11 m of vertical accretion since sea level flooded the bay 8000 yr BP. Virtually no net accretion (pile-up of fore-reef-derived rubble (rudstone) and sparse bindstone, and (3) a final stage of catch-up bindstone accretion in depths > 6 m. Coral framestone accreted at rates of 2.5-6.0 mm/yr in water depths > 11 m during the early Holocene; it abruptly terminated at ~4500 yr BP because of wave scour as sea level stabilized. More than 4 m of rudstone derived from the upper fore reef accreted at depths of 6 to 13 m below sea level between 4000 and 1500 yr BP coincident with late Holocene relative sea-level fall. Variations in the thickness, composition, and age of these reef facies across spatial scales of 10-1000 m within Kailua Bay illustrate the importance of antecedent topography and wave-related stress in reducing accommodation space for reef development set by sea level. Although accommodation space of 6 to 17 m has existed through most of the Holocene, the Kailua reef has been unable to catch up to sea level because of persistent high wave stress.

  19. Natural 32Si as a tool for the study of glacier dynamics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morgenstern, U.


    Cosmogenic 32 Si (half-life ca. 140 years) can be applied to the study of environmental circulation processes in the time range 50 to 1000 years, within which no other dating method is readily available. Its non-gaseous nature and fairly constant production rate are favourable to quantify its behaviour in environmental processes. 32 Si is potentially useful in studies of glacier dynamics, sedimentation in lakes and oceans, groundwater flow and mixing processes, ocean circulation, and soil erosion. Global distribution of 32 Si was poorly known for a long time. However, we now know that the spatial and temporal distribution is very similar to other well-investigated cosmogenic radionuclides: latitude and seasonal variation, negative-correlation to solar activity, and a brief contribution from nuclear weapons testing. We have now measured the 32 Si deposition via rain in Kaitoke, near Wellington, giving the first data for Southern Hemisphere. Compared to Northern Hemisphere data, the measured 32 Si concentrations in Kaitoke rain are nearly a factor 2 higher. Concentrations in snow from NZ glaciers are higher by a factor of 5, allowing for better dating of NZ glaciers than is possible in Northern Hemisphere glaciers. The age information from the glacier ice can provide reliable information on glacier turnover times and ice velocities, and indicate the timespan of available environmental records in the glacier. The special value of 32 Si is to provide age information of environmental records within the past few centuries, which is a main goal of future international activities in climate change research. (author). 2 refs

  20. Glacier development and topographic context

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    López-Moreno, J. I.; Nogués-Bravo, David; Chueca-Cía, J.


    This paper analyses the topographic context of the remaining glaciated areas in the Maladeta Massif (Central Spanish Pyrenees). These ice-covered surfaces have been incorporated into a geographic information system (GIS) in an attempt at correlating the presence of ice with a range of topographic...... and recent evolution of each glacial body. Thus, the joint effect of altitude, exposure to incoming solar radiation, slope and mean curvature is able to explain more than 70 per cent of the observed variance. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd....... variables obtained from a digital elevation model. The use of generalized additive models and binary regression tree models enabled us (i) to quantify the spatial variability in the distribution of glaciers attributable to characteristics of the local terrain, (ii) to investigate the interaction between...

  1. Surface water dynamics in the Reykjanes Ridge area during the Holocene as revealed by coccolith assemblages

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Balestra, B.; Ziveri, P.; Baumann, K. H.; Troelstra, S.R.; Monechi, S.


    The calcareous nannofossil assemblages from sediment core DS97-2P from the Reykjanes Ridge have been investigated to document oceanographic changes in surface water during the Holocene. The recorded variations in coccolithophore species assemblages and accumulation rates indicate that the region was

  2. Southern westerly winds: a pacemaker of Holocene glacial fluctuations in Patagonia? (United States)

    Sagredo, E. A.; Reynhout, S.; Kaplan, M. R.; Patricio, M. I.; Aravena, J. C.; Martini, M. A.; Schaefer, J. M.


    A well-resolved glacial chronology is crucial to compare sequences of glacial/climate events within and between regions, and thus, to unravel mechanisms underlying past climate changes. Important efforts have been made towards understanding the Holocene climate evolution of the Southern Andes; however, the timing, patterns and causes of glacial fluctuations during this period still remain elusive. Recent advances in terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide surface exposure dating, together with the establishment of a Patagonian 10Be production rate, have opened new possibilities for establishing high-resolution glacial chronologies at centennial/decadal scale. Here we present a 10Be surface exposure chronology of fluctuations of a small, climate-sensitive mountain glacier at Mt. Fitz Roy area (49.3°S), spanning from the last glacial termination to the present. Thirty new 10Be ages show glacial advances and moraine building events at 17.1±0.9 ka, 13.5±0.5 ka, 10.2±0.7 ka or 9.9±0.5 ka, 6.9±0.2 ka, 6.1±0.3 ka, 4.5±0.2 ka and 0.5±0.1 ka. Similar to the pattern observed in New Zealand, this sequence features progressively less extensive glacial advances during the late-glacial and early Holocene, followed by advances of roughly similar extent during the mid- to late-Holocene. We suggest that while the magnitude of Holocene glacial fluctuations in Patagonia is modulated by SH summer insolation ("modulator"), the specific timing of these glacial events is influenced by centennial-scale shifts of the Southern Westerly Winds ("pacemaker").

  3. Rock glaciers, Prealps, Vaud, Switzerland, Version 1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The investigated area forms part of the western lobe of the Prealps (Swiss Prealps). The 25 identified fossil rock glaciers are found mainly in the Prealpes medianes...

  4. Observations and modeling of fjord sedimentation during the 30 year retreat of Columbia Glacier, AK (United States)

    Love, Katherine B; Hallet, Bernard; Pratt, Thomas L.; O'Neel, Shad


    To explore links between glacier dynamics, sediment yields and the accumulation of glacial sediments in a temperate setting, we use extensive glaciological observations for Columbia Glacier, Alaska, and new oceanographic data from the fjord exposed during its retreat. High-resolution seismic data indicate that 3.2 × 108 m3 of sediment has accumulated in Columbia Fjord over the past three decades, which corresponds to ~5 mm a−1 of erosion averaged over the glaciated area. We develop a general model to infer the sediment-flux history from the glacier that is compatible with the observed retreat history, and the thickness and architecture of the fjord sediment deposits. Results reveal a fivefold increase in sediment flux from 1997 to 2000, which is not correlated with concurrent changes in ice flux or retreat rate. We suggest the flux increase resulted from an increase in the sediment transport capacity of the subglacial hydraulic system due to the retreat-related steepening of the glacier surface over a known subglacial deep basin. Because variations in subglacial sediment storage can impact glacial sediment flux, in addition to changes in climate, erosion rate and glacier dynamics, the interpretation of climatic changes based on the sediment record is more complex than generally assumed.

  5. Evacuation by sedimentary processes of fluvioglaciais glacier meltwater channels in Wanda, King George Island, Antarctica

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Da Rosa, K.; Vieira, R.; Velho, L.; Hammes, D.; Marquetto, L.; Lopes Simões, F.; Cardia Simões, J.


    Full text: Wanda Glacier is located on the western shore of Admiralty Bay, King George Island, Antarctic Peninsula . The glacier is characterized by the current land base and communicates with the Admiralty Bay through a proglacial lagoon, a result of the downturn in decades process. This generates glacier meltwater streams flowing through channels proglaciais falling on proglacial lagoon or directly on the bay, contributing suspended particulate matter into the bay .This paper presents preliminary results of field activities conducted in the glacier Wanda Operantar XXVIII, during the summer of 2009/10 . Investigates the influence of basal meltwater through fluvioglaciais channels and variability in suspended sediment evacuation by means of these, relating to the concentration of suspended particulate matter in the Bay, particularly in the cove Martel . Data were obtained through measurements of desgarga and the concentration of suspended material in the proglaciais defrost from the baseline flow of glacier water channels . Additionally, meteorological data such as rainfall, were associated with variations in the concentration of suspended sediment during the period . Was also made ​​in support of field mapping of meltwater channels

  6. Can Satellite Geodesy Disentangle Holocene Rebound and Present-Day Glacier Balance Signatures? (United States)

    Irvins, E.; James, T.; Yoder, C.


    The secular drift of the precession of the ascending node of the LAGOES -1 satellite is apparently linked to the Earth s paleoclimate through the slow viscous response of the mantle to ice sheet/ocean mass transfer during the last great continental deglaciation . The secular node acceleration is particularly sensitive to the longest wavelengths of the paleo -surface loading that have been memorized by the mantle glacio -isostatic flow. Tide gauge records for the last 130 years show a post-glacial rebound-corrected sea-level rise of 2.4 n 0.9 mm yr-1.

  7. Glacier size changes in Kronotsky Peninsula and Alney-Chashakondzha Massif, Kamchatka Peninsula in the second half of XX century and the beginning of XXI century

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Ya. Muravjev


    the pictures are not presented in the Inventory. Changes in areas of the Alney-Chashakondzha glaciers for period 1950–2013 in dependence on their sizes and expositions are shown in Tables 3 and 4.Glaciers on the Kronotsky Peninsula and the Alney-Chashakondzha massif shrink. Since 1950 to 2013 area of Kronotsky glaciers reduced by 18.8 km2, or by 22.9% (for glaciers with areas larger 0.5 km2. Area of the Alney-Chashakondzha glaciers reduced for the period since 1950 to 2010 by 11.6 km2, or by 19.2%, that is comparable to similar characteristics of glacier systems of Altai, Tien Shan, and Caucasus, and this contraction correlates with changes of basic climatic variations, i.e. rising of summer air temperature and decreasing of solid precipitation.

  8. Glacier monitoring and glacier-climate interactions in the tropical Andes: A review (United States)

    Veettil, Bijeesh Kozhikkodan; Wang, Shanshan; Florêncio de Souza, Sergio; Bremer, Ulisses Franz; Simões, Jefferson Cardia


    In this review, we summarized the evolution of glacier monitoring in the tropical Andes during the last few decades, particularly after the development of remote sensing and photogrammetry. Advantages and limitations of glacier mapping, applied so far, in Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia are discussed in detail. Glacier parameters such as the equilibrium line altitude, snowline and mass balance were given special attention in understanding the complex cryosphere-climate interactions, particularly using remote sensing techniques. Glaciers in the inner and the outer tropics were considered separately based on the precipitation and temperature conditions within a new framework. The applicability of various methods to use glacier records to understand and reconstruct the tropical Andean climate between the Last Glacial Maximum (11,700 years ago) and the present is also explored in this paper. Results from various studies published recently were analyzed and we tried to understand the differences in the magnitudes of glacier responses towards the climatic perturbations in the inner tropics and the outer tropics. Inner tropical glaciers, particularly those in Venezuela and Colombia near the January Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), are more vulnerable to increase in temperature. Surface energy balance experiments show that outer tropical glaciers respond to precipitation variability very rapidly in comparison with the temperature variability, particularly when moving towards the subtropics. We also analyzed the gradients in glacier response to climate change from the Pacific coast towards the Amazon Basin as well as with the elevation. Based on the current trends synthesised from recent studies, it is hypothesized that the glaciers in the inner tropics and the southern wet outer tropics will disappear first as a response to global warming whereas glaciers in the northern wet outer tropics and dry outer tropics show resistance to warming trends due to

  9. Fuzzy Cognitive Maps for Glacier Hazards Assessment: Application to Predicting the Potential for Glacier Lake Outbursts (United States)

    Furfaro, R.; Kargel, J. S.; Fink, W.; Bishop, M. P.


    Glaciers and ice sheets are among the largest unstable parts of the solid Earth. Generally, glaciers are devoid of resources (other than water), are dangerous, are unstable and no infrastructure is normally built directly on their surfaces. Areas down valley from large alpine glaciers are also commonly unstable due to landslide potential of moraines, debris flows, snow avalanches, outburst floods from glacier lakes, and other dynamical alpine processes; yet there exists much development and human occupation of some disaster-prone areas. Satellite remote sensing can be extremely effective in providing cost-effective and time- critical information. Space-based imagery can be used to monitor glacier outlines and their lakes, including processes such as iceberg calving and debris accumulation, as well as changing thicknesses and flow speeds. Such images can also be used to make preliminary identifications of specific hazardous spots and allows preliminary assessment of possible modes of future disaster occurrence. Autonomous assessment of glacier conditions and their potential for hazards would present a major advance and permit systematized analysis of more data than humans can assess. This technical leap will require the design and implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) algorithms specifically designed to mimic glacier experts’ reasoning. Here, we introduce the theory of Fuzzy Cognitive Maps (FCM) as an AI tool for predicting and assessing natural hazards in alpine glacier environments. FCM techniques are employed to represent expert knowledge of glaciers physical processes. A cognitive model embedded in a fuzzy logic framework is constructed via the synergistic interaction between glaciologists and AI experts. To verify the effectiveness of the proposed AI methodology as applied to predicting hazards in glacier environments, we designed and implemented a FCM that addresses the challenging problem of autonomously assessing the Glacier Lake Outburst Flow

  10. The length of the glaciers in the world

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Machguth, Horst; Huss, M.; Huss, M.


    a fully automated method based on glacier surface slope, distance to the glacier margins and a set of trade-off functions. The method is developed for East Greenland, evaluated for the same area as well as for Alaska, and eventually applied to all ∼ 200000 glaciers around the globe. The evaluation...... highlights accurately calculated glacier length where DEM quality is good (East 10 Greenland) and limited precision on low quality DEMs (parts of Alaska). Measured length of very small glaciers is subject to a certain level of ambiguity. The global calculation shows that only about 1.5% of all glaciers...... are longer than 10km with Bering Glacier (Alaska/Canada) being the longest glacier in the world at a length of 196 km. Based on model output we derive global and regional area-length scaling laws. Differences among regional scaling parameters appear to be related to characteristics of topography and glacier...

  11. Quantitative Holocene climatic reconstructions for the lower Yangtze region of China (United States)

    Li, Jianyong; Dodson, John; Yan, Hong; Wang, Weiming; Innes, James B.; Zong, Yongqiang; Zhang, Xiaojian; Xu, Qinghai; Ni, Jian; Lu, Fengyan


    Quantitative proxy-based and high-resolution palaeoclimatic datasets are scarce for the lower reaches of the Yangtze River (LYR) basin. This region is in a transitional vegetation zone which is climatologically sensitive; and as a birthplace for prehistorical civilization in China, it is important to understand how palaeoclimatic dynamics played a role in affecting cultural development in the region. We present a pollen-based and regionally-averaged Holocene climatic twin-dataset for mean total annual precipitation (PANN) and mean annual temperature (TANN) covering the last 10,000 years for the LYR region. This is based on the technique of weighted averaging-partial least squares regression to establish robust calibration models for obtaining reliable climatic inferences. The pollen-based reconstructions generally show an early Holocene climatic optimum with both abundant monsoonal rainfall and warm thermal conditions, and a declining pattern of both PANN and TANN values in the middle to late Holocene. The main driving forces behind the Holocene climatic changes in the LYR area are likely summer solar insolation associated with tropical or subtropical macro-scale climatic circulations such as the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), Western Pacific Subtropical High (WPSH), and El Niño/Southern Oscillation (ENSO). Regional multi-proxy comparisons indicate that the Holocene variations in precipitation and temperature for the LYR region display an in-phase relationship with other related proxy records from southern monsoonal China and the Indian monsoon-influenced regions, but are inconsistent with the Holocene moisture or temperature records from northern monsoonal China and the westerly-dominated region in northwestern China. Overall, our comprehensive palaeoclimatic dataset and models may be significant tools for understanding the Holocene Asian monsoonal evolution and for anticipating its future dynamics in eastern Asia.

  12. Step-wise changes in glacier flow speed coincide with calving and glacial earthquakes at Helheim Glacier, Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nettles, M.; Larsen, T. B.; Elósegui, P.


    Geodetic observations show several large, sudden increases in flow speed at Helheim Glacier, one of Greenland's largest outlet glaciers, during summer, 2007. These step-like accelerations, detected along the length of the glacier, coincide with teleseismically detected glacial earthquakes and major...... iceberg calving events. No coseismic offset in the position of the glacier surface is observed; instead, modest tsunamis associated with the glacial earthquakes implicate glacier calving in the seismogenic process. Our results link changes in glacier velocity directly to calving-front behavior...... at Greenland's largest outlet glaciers, on timescales as short as minutes to hours, and clarify the mechanism by which glacial earthquakes occur. Citation: Nettles, M., et al. (2008), Step-wise changes in glacier flow speed coincide with calving and glacial earthquakes at Helheim Glacier, Greenland....

  13. Combination of UAV and terrestrial photogrammetry to assess rapid glacier evolution and map glacier hazards (United States)

    Fugazza, Davide; Scaioni, Marco; Corti, Manuel; D'Agata, Carlo; Azzoni, Roberto Sergio; Cernuschi, Massimo; Smiraglia, Claudio; Diolaiuti, Guglielmina Adele


    Tourists and hikers visiting glaciers all year round face hazards such as sudden terminus collapses, typical of such a dynamically evolving environment. In this study, we analyzed the potential of different survey techniques to analyze hazards of the Forni Glacier, an important geosite located in Stelvio Park (Italian Alps). We carried out surveys in the 2016 ablation season and compared point clouds generated from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) survey, close-range photogrammetry and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS). To investigate the evolution of glacier hazards and evaluate the glacier thinning rate, we also used UAV data collected in 2014 and a digital elevation model (DEM) created from an aerial photogrammetric survey of 2007. We found that the integration between terrestrial and UAV photogrammetry is ideal for mapping hazards related to the glacier collapse, while TLS is affected by occlusions and is logistically complex in glacial terrain. Photogrammetric techniques can therefore replace TLS for glacier studies and UAV-based DEMs hold potential for becoming a standard tool in the investigation of glacier thickness changes. Based on our data sets, an increase in the size of collapses was found over the study period, and the glacier thinning rates went from 4.55 ± 0.24 m a-1 between 2007 and 2014 to 5.20 ± 1.11 m a-1 between 2014 and 2016.

  14. ICESat laser altimetry over small mountain glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Treichler


    Full Text Available Using sparsely glaciated southern Norway as a case study, we assess the potential and limitations of ICESat laser altimetry for analysing regional glacier elevation change in rough mountain terrain. Differences between ICESat GLAS elevations and reference elevation data are plotted over time to derive a glacier surface elevation trend for the ICESat acquisition period 2003–2008. We find spatially varying biases between ICESat and three tested digital elevation models (DEMs: the Norwegian national DEM, SRTM DEM, and a high-resolution lidar DEM. For regional glacier elevation change, the spatial inconsistency of reference DEMs – a result of spatio-temporal merging – has the potential to significantly affect or dilute trends. Elevation uncertainties of all three tested DEMs exceed ICESat elevation uncertainty by an order of magnitude, and are thus limiting the accuracy of the method, rather than ICESat uncertainty. ICESat matches glacier size distribution of the study area well and measures small ice patches not commonly monitored in situ. The sample is large enough for spatial and thematic subsetting. Vertical offsets to ICESat elevations vary for different glaciers in southern Norway due to spatially inconsistent reference DEM age. We introduce a per-glacier correction that removes these spatially varying offsets, and considerably increases trend significance. Only after application of this correction do individual campaigns fit observed in situ glacier mass balance. Our correction also has the potential to improve glacier trend significance for other causes of spatially varying vertical offsets, for instance due to radar penetration into ice and snow for the SRTM DEM or as a consequence of mosaicking and merging that is common for national or global DEMs. After correction of reference elevation bias, we find that ICESat provides a robust and realistic estimate of a moderately negative glacier mass balance of around −0.36 ± 0.07

  15. What Influences Climate and Glacier Change in the Southwestern China? (United States)

    Yasunari, Teppei J.


    The subject of climate change in the areas of the Tibetan Plateau (TP) and the Himalayas has taken on increasing importance because of available water resources from their mountain glaciers. Many of these glaciers over the region have been retreating, while some are advancing and stable. Other studies report that some glaciers in the Himalayas show acceleration on their shrinkage. However, the causes of the glacier meltings are still difficult to grasp because of the complexity of climatic change and its influence on glacier issues. However, it is vital that we pursue further study to enable the future prediction on glacier changes.

  16. Holocene environmental change and archaeology, Yangtze River Valley, China: Review and prospects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Li Wu


    Full Text Available Holocene environmental change and environmental archaeology are important components of an international project studying the human-earth interaction system. This paper reviews the progress of Holocene environmental change and environmental archaeology research in the Yangtze River Valley over the last three decades, that includes the evolution of large freshwater lakes, Holocene transgression and sea-level changes, Holocene climate change and East Asian monsoon variation, relationship between the rise and fall of primitive civilizations and environmental changes, cultural interruptions and palaeoflood events, as well as relationship between the origin of agriculture and climate change. These research components are underpinned by the dating of lacustrine sediments, stalagmites and peat to establish a chronology of regional environmental and cultural evolution. Interdisciplinary and other environment proxy indicators need to be used in comparative studies of archaeological site formation and natural sedimentary environment in the upper, middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River Valley. Modern technology such as remote sensing, molecular bioarchaeology, and virtual reality, should be integrated with currently used dating, geochemical, sedimentological, and palaeobotanical methods of analysis in environmental archaeology macro- and micro-studies, so as to provide a greater comprehensive insight into Holocene environmental and cultural interaction and change in the Yangtze River Valley area.

  17. The Aysen Glacier Trail (AGT): Fostering leadership and personal growth towards understanding our place in the environment through experiential learning and scientific inquiry in northern Patagonia, Chile (United States)

    Sincavage, R.; Chambers, F. B.; Leidich, J.


    The Colonia Glacier, a low elevation mid-latitude glacier, drains the lee side of the central division of the Northern Patagonian Ice Field (NPI). As such, it serves as a microcosm of conditions on the NPI as a whole. Glaciers of this type have experienced extreme variability in Holocene thickness and extent, making them excellent indicators of local and regional climate conditions. Glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) originating in the remote Cachet Basin, dammed by the Colonia Glacier, have increased in frequency from once every 10 years to 3 times annually since 2008. These flood events are important in that they 1.) directly impact the livelihoods of downstream residents, 2.) may be linked to the overall health of the Colonia Glacier and, to a larger extent, the NPI, 3.) provide a natural laboratory for studying the dynamics of large flood events, and 4.) have downcut the sediments sequestered in the upper basin, revealing a rich Holocene sedimentologic and climate record. With improved access to this remote region through local partners in recent years, outstanding opportunities for scientific discovery, education, and outreach exist in one of the most beautiful and least-studied glacial regions on Earth. We propose establishing an NSF REU site here to further develop the abundant educational and research opportunities in this spectacular locale. We envision students participating under the REU will receive a broad-based background in glaciology and sedimentology prior to the field experience, and then participate in basic field research led by the PIs into understanding recent and Holocene linkages between climate change and the glacio-fluvio geomorphology of the NPI. A pilot program of 13 U.S. and Chilean students with wide-ranging backgrounds and degree levels was conducted in the winter of 2015-16. A two week backcountry trek across rocky terrain, mountain streams, active glaciers, and proglacial lakes in this seldom-visited region immersed the students

  18. Sensitivity of sediment magnetic records to climate change during Holocene for the northern South China Sea (United States)

    Ouyang, Tingping; Li, Mingkun; Zhao, Xiang; Zhu, Zhaoyu; Tian, Chengjing; Qiu, Yan; Peng, Xuechao; Hu, Qiao


    Magnetic property has been proved to be a sensitive proxy to climate change for both terrestrial and marine sediments. Based on the schedule frame established by AMS 14C dating of foraminifera, detail magnetic analyses were performed for core PC24 sediments at sampling intervals of 2 cm to discuss magnetic sensitivity of marine sediment to climate during Holocene for the northern South China Sea. The results indicated that: 1) Concentration dependent magnetic parameters are positive corresponding to variation of temperature. The frequency dependent susceptibility coefficient basically reflected the variation in humidity; 2) XARM/SIRM was more sensitive to detrital magnetite particles and SIRM/X was more effective to biogenic magnetite particles. Variations of XARM/SIRM and SIRM/X are corresponding to precipitation and temperature, respectively; 3) the Holocene Megathermal in the study area was identified as 7.5-3.4 cal. ka BP. The warmest stage of Holocene for the study area should be during 6.1 to 3.9 cal. ka BP; 4) The 8 ka cold event was characterized as cold and dry during 8.55 to 8.25 cal. ka BP; 5) During early and middle Holocene, the climate combinations were warm dry and cold wet. It turned to warm and wet after 2.7 cal. ka BP.

  19. Sensitivity of sediment magnetic records to climate change during Holocene for the northern South China Sea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tingping eOuyang


    Full Text Available Magnetic property has been proved to be a sensitive proxy to climate change for both terrestrial and marine sediments. Based on the schedule frame established by AMS 14C dating of foraminifera, detail magnetic analyses were performed for core PC24 sediments at sampling intervals of 2 cm to discuss magnetic sensitivity of marine sediment to climate during Holocene for the northern South China Sea. The results indicated that: 1 Concentration dependent magnetic parameters are positive corresponding to variation of temperature. The frequency dependent susceptibility coefficient basically reflected the variation in humidity; 2 XARM/SIRM was more sensitive to detrital magnetite particles and SIRM/X was more effective to biogenic magnetite particles. Variations of XARM/SIRM and SIRM/X are corresponding to precipitation and temperature, respectively; 3 the Holocene Megathermal in the study area was identified as 7.5-3.4 cal. ka BP. The warmest stage of Holocene for the study area should be during 6.1 to 3.9 cal. ka BP; 4 The 8 ka cold event was characterized as cold and dry during 8.55 to 8.25 cal. ka BP; 5 During early and middle Holocene, the climate combinations were warm dry and cold wet. It turned to warm and wet after 2.7 cal. ka BP.

  20. Holocene fluctuations of Quelccaya Ice Cap, Peru based on lacustrine and surficial geologic archives (United States)

    Stroup, J. S.; Kelly, M. A.; Lowell, T. V.; Beal, S. A.; Smith, C. A.


    ., 2009). Clastic sedimentation may reflect the glacier thermal regime. Relic plants now being uncovered by the receding QIC (Thompson et al., 2006, 2013) suggest advance of cold-based ice that did not produce significant meltwater or rock flour. Striations, also present on the landscape, indicate warm-based ice conditions, which would produce meltwater and rock flour. We suggest that these striations were likely produced during ice cap retreat. A small QIC during early and middle Holocene time and large QIC during late Holocene time is similar to the Holocene extents of many Northern Hemisphere glaciers and apparently follows the pattern of Northern Hemisphere summer insolation.

  1. Monitoring Unstable Glaciers with Seismic Noise Interferometry (United States)

    Preiswerk, L. E.; Walter, F.


    Gravity-driven glacier instabilities are a threat to human infrastructure in alpine terrain, and this hazard is likely to increase with future changes in climate. Seismometers have been used previously on hazardous glaciers to monitor the natural englacial seismicity. In some situations, an increase in "icequake" activity may indicate fracture growth and thus an imminent major break-off. However, without independent constraints on unstable volumes, such mere event counting is of little use. A promising new approach to monitor unstable masses in Alpine terrain is coda wave interferometry of ambient noise. While already established in the solid earth, application to glaciers is not straightforward, because the lack of inhomogeneities typically suppresses seismic coda waves in glacier ice. Only glaciers with pervasive crevasses provide enough scattering to generate long codas. This is requirement is likely met for highly dynamic unstable glaciers. Here, we report preliminary results from a temporary 5-station on-ice array of seismometers (corner frequencies: 1 Hz, array aperture: 500m) on Bisgletscher (Switzerland). The seismometers were deployed in shallow boreholes, directly above the unstable tongue of the glacier. In the frequency band 4-12 Hz, we find stable noise cross-correlations, which in principle allows monitoring on a subdaily scale. The origin and the source processes of the ambient noise in these frequencies are however uncertain. As a first step, we evaluate the stability of the sources in order to separate effects of changing source parameters from changes of englacial properties. Since icequakes occurring every few seconds may dominate the noise field, we compare their temporal and spatial occurrences with the cross-correlation functions (stability over time, the asymmetry between causal and acausal parts of the cross-correlation functions) as well as with results from beamforming to assess the influence of these transient events on the noise field.

  2. Subglacial drainage effects on surface motion on a small surge type alpine glacier on the St. Elias range, Yukon Territory, Canada. (United States)

    Rada, C.; Schoof, C.; King, M. A.; Flowers, G. E.; Haber, E.


    Subglacial drainage is known to play an important role in glacier dynamics trough its influence on basal sliding. However, drainage is also one of the most poorly understood process in glacier flow due to the difficulties of observing, identifying and modeling the physics involved. In an effort to improve understanding of subglacial processes, we have monitored a small, approximately 100 m thick surge-type alpine glacier for nine years. Over 300 boreholes were instrumented with pressure transducers over a 0.5 km² in its upper ablation area, in addition to a weather station and a permanent GPS array consisting on 16 dual-frequency receivers within the study area. We study the influence of the subglacial drainage system on the glacier surface velocity. However, pressure variations in the drainage system during the melt season are dominated by diurnal oscillations.Therefore, GPS solutions have to be computed at sub-diurnal time intervals in order to explore the effects of transient diurnal pressure variations. Due to the small displacements of the surface of the glacier over those periods (4-10 cm/day), sub-diurnal solutions are dominated by errors, making it impossible to observe the diurnal variations in glacier motion. We have found that the main source of error is GPS multipath. This error source does largely cancel out when solutions are computed over 24 hour periods (or more precisely, over a sidereal day), but solution precisions decrease quickly when computed over shorter periods of time. Here we present an inverse problem approach to remove GPS multipath errors on glaciers, and use the reconstructed glacier motion to explore how the subglacial drainage morphology and effective pressure influence glacier dynamics at multiple time scales.

  3. Preliminary biogeochemical assessment of EPICA LGM and Holocene ice samples (United States)

    Bulat, S.; Alekhina, I.; Marie, D.; Wagenbach, D.; Raynaud, D.; Petit, J. R.


    weak signals were possible to generate which are now under cloning. The signals were hard to reproduce because of rather low volume of samples. More ice volume is needed to get the biosignal stronger and reproducible. Meantime we are adjusting PCR and in addition testing DNA repair-enzyme cocktail in case of DNA damage. As a preliminary conclusion we would like to highlight the following. Both Holocene and LGM ice samples (EDC99 and EDML) are very clean in terms of Ultra low biomass and Ultra low DOC content. The most basal ice of EDC and EDML ice cores could help in assessing microbial biomass and diversity if present under the glacier at the ice-bedrock boundary. * The present-day consortium includes S. Bulat, I. Alekhina, P. Normand, D. Prieur, J-R. Petit and D. Raynaud (France) and E. Willerslev and J.P. Steffensen (Denmark)

  4. GlacierRocks - Glacier-Headwall Interaction and its Influence on Rockfall Activity (United States)

    Hartmeyer, Ingo; Keuschnig, Markus; Krautblatter, Michael; Helfricht, Kay; Leith, Kerry; Otto, Jan-Christoph


    Climate models predict continued climate warming and a decrease of Austrian glaciers to less than 20% of their present area by the end of this century. Rockfall from freshly exposed headwalls has been documented as an increasing risk factor with considerable significance for man and high-alpine infrastructure. Recent findings of a five-year terrestrial laserscanning campaign (2011-2016) monitoring glacial headwalls at the Kitzsteinhorn (3.203 m a.s.l.), Hohe Tauern Range, Austria, show the dramatic impact of glacier thinning on adjacent headwalls: 80 % of the detected rockfall volumes were triggered from areas located less than 20 m above the current glacier surface. Despite these implications, little is known about the thermal, mechanical and hydrological processes that operate at the glacier-headwall interface (randkluft). Systemic in-situ monitoring of stability-relevant parameters are lacking, leaving fundamental gaps in the understanding of rockfall preconditioning in glacial headwalls and the geomorphological evolution of glaciated catchments. In this contribution we introduce the recently approved research project 'GlacierRocks', which starts in 2017 and will run for at least three years. 'GlacierRocks' will establish the worldwide first research site for long-term monitoring of stability-relevant processes inside a randkluft system. Based on the acquired monitoring data 'GlacierRocks' is pursuing three overall aims at (1) gaining a better understanding of rockfall preconditioning in randklufts and related geomorphological shaping of headwalls, (2) analyzing poorly understood glacial thinning dynamics near headwalls, and (3) estimating present and future rockfall hazard potential in headwalls on a regional scale. The three system components (headwall, glacier, randkluft) will be investigated by combining geomorphological, glaciological and meteorological methods. 'GlacierRocks' will continuously monitor rock temperature, rock moisture, frost cracking

  5. Updating the New Zealand Glacier Inventory (United States)

    Baumann, S. C.; Anderson, B.; Mackintosh, A.; Lorrey, A.; Chinn, T.; Collier, C.; Rack, W.; Purdie, H.


    The last complete glacier inventory of New Zealand dates from the year 1978 (North Island 1988) and was manually constructed from oblique aerial photographs and geodetic maps (Chinn 2001). The inventory has been partly updated by Gjermundsen et al. (2011) for the year 2002 (40% of total area) and by Sirguey & More (2010) for the year 2009 (32% of total area), both using ASTER satellite imagery. We used Landsat 8 OLI/TIRS satellite data from February/March 2016 to map the total glaciated area. Clean and debris-covered ice were mapped semi-automatically. The band ratio approach was used for clean ice (ratio: red/SWIR). We mapped debris-covered ice using a supervised classification (maximum likelihood). Manual post processing was necessary due to misclassifications (e.g. lakes, clouds) or mapping in shadowed areas. It was also necessary to manually combine the clean and debris-covered parts into single glaciers. Additional input data for the post processing were Sentinel 2 images from the same time period, orthophotos from Land Information New Zealand (resolution: 0.75 m, date: Nov 2014), and the 1978/88 outlines from the GLIMS database ( As the Sentinel 2 data were more heavily cloud covered compared to the Landsat 8 images, they were only used for post processing and not for the classification itself. Initial results show that New Zealand glaciers covered an area of about 1050 km² in 2016, a reduction of 16% since 1978. Approximately 17% of glacier area was covered in surface debris. The glaciers in the central Southern Alps around Mt Cook reduced in area by 24%. Glaciers in the North Island of New Zealand reduced by 71% since 1988, and only 2 km² of ice cover remained in 2016. Chinn, TJH (2001). "Distribution of the glacial water resources of New Zealand." Journal of Hydrology (NZ) 40(2): 139-187 Gjermundsen, EF, Mathieu, R, Kääb, A, Chinn, TJH, Fitzharris, B & Hagen, JO (2011). "Assessment of multispectral glacier mapping methods and

  6. Recent changes in equilibrium line altitudes of glaciers in the Chandra-Bhaga Catchments, the Western Himalaya (United States)

    Kumari, R.; Vijay, S.; Banerjee, A.; Singh, G.


    Abstract: Climatic forcing affects a glacier through a change in the corresponding equilibrium line altitude (ELA). Many approximate methods are available in the literature for estimating ELA of glaciers that are in a steady state. Some of the rudimentary methods e.g. Toe-to-Headwall-Ratio method or mid-point elevation methods are based solely on the elevation range of the glacier cover, and ignore the variations in slope, valley width or the mass-balance profile. The mean-elevation method is more accurate in that it takes into account the glacier hypsometry. In this study, we extend this method to estimate the ELA of a glacier that is not in a steady state. We assume a linear mass-balance profile, and utilize geodetic mass balance and hypsometry of the glacier to obtain ELA. This method is generally useful to track, for example, the spatial pattern of recent ELA changes in a given region. We apply the above method to 46 debris-free glaciers in the Chandra-Bhaga catchments, the Western Himalaya, to understand the regional ELA forcing during 2000 to 2012. Shuttle Radar Topographic Mission (2000) and TanDEM-X (2012) digital elevation model (DEM) are used to get elevation data. A strong correlation (r2=0.90 and pELAs with the corresponding end-of-summer-snowline-elevation data derived from cloud-free Landsat images validates our method. Our estimate for the recent ELA of Chhota shigri Glacier from the region are consistent with published glaciological ELA values. On a regional scale, the estimated ELAs are negatively correlated (r2= 0.66 and pELA per 10 mm/year reduction in rainfall. We shall also discuss the regional patterns of the changes in transient ELA between 2000 and 2012.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Vogel


    Full Text Available Quantitative measurements of glacier flow over time are an important ingredient for glaciological research, for example to determine the mass balances and the evolution of glaciers. Measuring glacier flow in multi-temporal images involves the estimation of a dense set of corresponding points, which in turn define the flow vectors. Furthermore glaciers exhibit rather difficult radiometry, since their surface usually contains homogeneous areas as well as weak texture and contrast. To date glacier flow is usually observed by manually measuring a sparse set of correspondences, which is labor-intensive and often yields rather irregular point distributions, with the associated problems of interpolating over large areas. In the present work we propose to densely compute motion vectors at every pixel, by using recent robust methods for optic flow computation. Determining the optic flow, i.e. the dense deformation field between two images of a dynamic scene, has been a classic, long-standing research problem in computer vision and image processing. Sophisticated methods exist to optimally balance data fidelity with smoothness of the motion field. Depending on the strength of the local image gradients these methods yield a smooth trade-off between matching and interpolation, thereby avoiding the somewhat arbitrary decision which discrete anchor points to measure, while at the same time mitigating the problem of gross matching errors. We evaluate our method by comparing with manually measured point wise ground truth.

  8. Rock glaciers on South Shetland Islands, Antarctic Peninsula, Version 1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — In the South Shetland Islands the investigators found eight active rock glaciers, no relict or fossil examples, and seven protalus ramparts. The rock glaciers are...

  9. Climatic control on extreme sediment transfer from Dokriani Glacier ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    glaciers have received more attention for the water resources management and hydropower develop- ment in the Himalayas ..... Glacier melt runoff represents the integrated basin response to various ..... for policy implementation; Him. Geol.

  10. Rock glaciers in the Pyrenees, Spain and France, Version 1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This study and inventory of active rock glaciers was carried out by means of the usual techniques used in the study of alpine permafrost. First, the rock glaciers...

  11. Can shrubs help to reconstruct historical glacier retreats?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Buras, Allan; Hallinger, Martin; Wilmking, Martin


    In the 21st century, most of the world’s glaciers are expected to retreat due to further global warming. The range of this predicted retreat varies widely as a result of uncertainties in climate and glacier models. To calibrate and validate glacier models, past records of glacier mass balance are necessary, which often only span several decades. Long-term reconstructions of glacier mass balance could increase the precision of glacier models by providing the required calibration data. Here we show the possibility of applying shrub growth increments as an on-site proxy for glacier summer mass balance, exemplified by Salix shrubs in Finse, Norway. We further discuss the challenges which this method needs to meet and address the high potential of shrub growth increments for reconstructing glacier summer mass balance in remote areas. (letter)

  12. Monitoring of Gangotri glacier using remote sensing and ground ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    for activating fast melting and affecting the glacier health significantly. Apart from climatic ... glacier health were also validated using high resolution satellite imageries and field visit. A deglaciation ...... Contribution of Work- ing Group I to the ...

  13. Millennial Scale Variability of the AMOC and its Link to Climate During the Holocene (United States)

    Thornalley, D. J.; Oppo, D.; Keigwin, L. D.; Hall, I. R.; Moffa Sanchez, P.


    Several proxy and modelling studies suggest that there may have been considerable change in the operation the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) during the Holocene. Yet despite its importance for regional and global climate, the Holocene history of the AMOC is poorly constrained. Improving our knowledge of past AMOC variability will contribute to our general understanding of the dynamics of ocean circulation and the role it may play in causing or amplifying climate variability on millennial timescales. We present Holocene grain-size records in depth transects from Blake Outer Ridge and Cape Hatteras, sampling the full-depth range of the Deep Western Boundary Current (DWBC), the lower limb of the AMOC. These records will complement a depth-transect of grain-size records sampling the Iceland-Scotland (I-S) overflow, showing Holocene variations that reflect deglacial meltwater forcing in the early Holocene and insolation-forced trends from the middle-to-late Holocene (Thornalley et al., 2013, Climate of the Past). We will also present detailed grain-size records for the last 2,000 years, both in a depth transect of cores off Cape Hatteras, and from cores in the Iceland Basin, sampling the I-S overflow. Our extensive datasets enable us to provide a coherent synthesis of changes in the flow strength of key components of the AMOC on centennial-millennial and orbital timescales, which we can use to develop our understanding of past millennial-scale climate variability. Specific questions to be addressed include: How well coupled are Holocene trends in Iceland-Scotland overflow and the DWBC? How did I-S overflow and the AMOC vary during the last millennia, including the last ~150 years since the end of the Little Ice Age? Initial results suggest a long-term anti-phasing of the Nordic overflows, wherein mid-late Holocene weakening of the I-S overflow has been compensated for by a strengthening of Denmark Strait overflow. We will also report on pronounced

  14. Glacier mass balance reconstruction by sublimation induced enrichment of chemical species on Cerro Tapado (Chilean Andes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Ginot


    Full Text Available A 36 m long ice core down to bedrock from the Cerro Tapado glacier (5536 m a.s.l, 30°08' S, 69°55' W was analyzed to reconstruct past climatic conditions for Northern Chile. Because of the marked seasonality in the precipitation (short wet winter and extended dry summer periods in this region, major snow ablation and related post-depositional processes occur on the glacier surface during summer periods. They include predominantly sublimation and dry deposition. Assuming that, like measured during the field campaign, the enrichment of chloride was always related to sublimation, the chemical record along the ice core may be applied to reconstruct the history of such secondary processes linked to the past climatic conditions over northern Chile. For the time period 1962–1999, a mean annual net accumulation of 316 mm water equivalent (weq and 327 mm weq loss by sublimation was deduced by this method. This corresponds to an initial total annual accumulation of 539 mm weq. The annual variability of the accumulation and sublimation is related with the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI: higher net-accumulation during El-Niño years and more sublimation during La Niña years. The deepest part of the ice record shows a time discontinuity; with an ice body deposited under different climatic conditions: 290 mm higher precipitation but with reduced seasonal distribution (+470 mm in winter and –180 mm in summer and –3°C lower mean annual temperature. Unfortunately, its age is unknown. The comparison with regional proxy data however let us conclude that the glacier buildup did most likely occur after the dry mid-Holocene.

  15. Advances in Holocene mountain geomorphology inspired by sediment budget methodology (United States)

    Slaymaker, Olav; Souch, Catherine; Menounos, Brian; Filippelli, Gabriel


    The sediment budget, which links sediment sources to sediment sinks with hydroclimatic and weathering processes mediating the response, is applied to the analysis of sediments in three alpine lakes in British Columbia. We provide two ways of using the sediment budget as an integrating device in the interpretation of mountain geomorphology. These approaches differ in their resolution and ability to budget the major components of the fine-sediment cascade in glaciated environments. Taken together, they provide an integrated index of landscape change over the Holocene. The first example compares the hydroclimatic controls of lake sedimentation for the last 600 years (A.D. 1370-1998) preserved in varved sediments from two of the lake basins. This hydroclimatological approach incorporates contemporary monitoring, air photo analysis, and detailed stratigraphy of sedimentation events within a single varve to infer the timing, sources, and preferred pathways of fine-grained sediments reaching the lake basins. The results indicate that glaciers, hillslope, and channel instability within the major subbasins are the principal sediment sources to the lake basins. Transitory sediment storage of glacially derived sediments within the channels is believed to modulate the episodic and more frequent delivery of sediments from adjacent hillslope and fluvial storage sites and direct routing of glacial rock flour during years of prolonged glacial melt. The second example, relying on the phosphorus geochemistry of sediments in an alpine lake basin, considers the evolution of phosphorus forms (from mineral to occluded and organic fractions) as a function of the soil development, inherent slope instability, and repeated cycles of glaciation and neoglaciation over the Holocene. This geochemical approach demonstrates that both neoglaciation and full glaciation have essentially zeroed the system in such a way that a high proportion of mineral phosphorus remains in the present lake sediments

  16. Using marine sediment archives to reconstruct past outlet glacier variability

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andresen, Camilla Snowman; Straneo, Fiamma; Ribergaard, Mads


    Ice-rafted debris in fjord sediment cores provides information about outlet glacier activity beyond the instrumental time period. It tells us that the Helheim Glacier, Greenland’s third most productive glacier, responds rapidly to short-term (3 to 10 years) climate changes....

  17. Determining glacier velocity with single frequency GPS receivers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Reijmer, C.H.; van de Wal, R.S.W.; Boot, W.


    A well-known phenomenon in glacier dynamics is the existence of a relation between the glacier velocity and available amount of melt water (Zwally et al., 2002; Van de Wal et al., 2008). This relation is of particular importance when estimating the reaction of glaciers and ice sheets to climate

  18. Tidal Movement of Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden Glacier, Northeast Greenland: Observations and Modelling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reeh, Niels; Mayer, C.; Olesen, O. B.


    Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden glacier is a > 60 km long and 20 km wide floating outlet glacier located at 79 degrees 30' N, 22 degrees W, draining a large area of the northeast Greenland ice sheet. Climate, mass-balance and dynamics studies were carried out on the glacier in three field seasons in 1996...

  19. Climate reconstructions derived from global glacier length records

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klok, E.J.; Oerlemans, J.


    As glacier length fluctuations provide useful information about past climate, we derived historic fluctuations in the equilibrium-line altitude (ELA) on the basis of 19 glacier length records from different parts of the world. We used a model that takes into account the geometry of the glacier,

  20. Investigating extreme flood response to Holocene palaeoclimate in the Chinese monsoonal zone: A palaeoflood case study from the Hanjiang River (United States)

    Guo, Yongqiang; Huang, Chun Chang; Pang, Jiangli; Zha, Xiaochun; Zhou, Yali; Wang, Longsheng; Zhang, Yuzhu; Hu, Guiming


    Palaeoflood events recorded by slackwater deposits (SWDs) were investigated extensively by sedimentological criteria of palaeohydrology along the upper Hanjiang River valley. Modern flood SWDs were collected for comparison with palaeoflood SWD in the same reaches. Three typical palaeoflood SWDs were observed within Holocene loess-soil blanket on the first river terrace land. The grain size distributions of palaeoflood SWDs are similar to modern flood SWDs, whereas they are different from eolian loess and soil. Palaeoflood SWD lies in three major pedo-stratigraphic boundaries (TS/L0, L0/S0, and S0/Lt) in the Holocene loess-soil profiles. The chronology of three palaeoflood episodes was established by OSL dating and pedo-stratigraphic correlation with the well-dated Holocene loess-soil profiles in the upper Hanjiang River basin. Holocene palaeoflood events were dated to 9500-8500, 3200-2800, and 1800-1700 a B.P., respectively. Palaeoflood discharges were estimated by the palaeoflood model (i.e., slope-area method and step-backwater method). The highest discharges are 51,680-53,950 m3 s- 1 at the 11,500-time scale in the Xunyang reach of the upper Hanjiang River valley. Holocene extraordinary hydroclimatic events in the Hanjiang River often result from abnormal atmospheric circulations from Southwest monsoons in the Chinese monsoonal zone. These results provide a regional expression of extreme flood response to Holocene palaeoclimate to understand the effects of global climatic variations on the river system dynamics.

  1. A Record of Holocene Paleoclimate Evolution from Robertson Bay, Victoria Land, Antarctica (United States)

    Riesselman, C. R.; Truax, O.; Wilson, G. S.; Parker, R. L.; Yoo, K. C.; Lee, J. I.; Levy, R. H.; Mckay, R. M.


    Regionally representative records of how Antarctica responded to the transition from the Last Glacial Maximum into the Holocene are an essential component of understanding the processes by which the Antarctic cryosphere responds to a changing climate. Here, we present a high-resolution record of Holocene Antarctic paleoclimate evolution from a previously unstudied section of the Victoria Land margin. In 2015 the Korea Polar Research Institute collected a 571 cm sediment core, GC57, from Robertson Bay, a protected embayment west of Cape Adare and adjacent to the outlet glaciers of the Transantarctic Mountains. Using diatom assemblages, bulk sediment geochemistry, and the magnetic properties of GC57, we aim to reconstruct the response of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet to warming associated with deglaciation and the Holocene climatic optima at the interface between the Ross Sea and the Southern Ocean. Our multiproxy approach allows us to study sea ice extent, seasonality, ocean stratification and circulation, and primary productivity from the mid-Holocene (7,400 14C year BP) to the present. A sea-ice associated diatom assemblage indicative of summer sea surface temperatures below 0˚C dominates the basal section of GC57. Although diatoms are well preserved, the unit is characterized by low wt% biogenic silica (average 9%) and a high concentration of magnetic minerals, indicating that biogenic production persisted despite substantial terrigenous input into the bay. A rapid transition at 4708 14C yr BP is identified by a steep increase in wt% BSi (average 13%), a decrease in magnetic minerals, and a subtle assemblage change towards sea-ice associated diatoms with slightly warmer temperature tolerances. The novel ramped pyrolosis 14C dating methodology allows us to date the carbon fixed concurrent with deposition and generate a robust age model for GC57 with an accuracy previously difficult to achieve given the uncertainties associated with dating bulk acid insoluble

  2. Floodplain construction of the Rio Grande at El Paso, Texas, USA: response to Holocene climate change (United States)

    Hall, Stephen A.; Peterson, John A.


    The Rio Grande is one of the larger rivers in North America, and the development of its floodplain is related to Holocene climate and climate change. The late Pleistocene through early Holocene channel is characterized by a meander or braided system with lateral cutting and backfilling, resulting in the valley-wide deposition of massive to cross-bedded, fine-to-medium textured sand. The late Pleistocene-early Holocene floodplain is also the sand source for the adjacent Bolson sand sheet. The sand sheet stopped accumulating new sand 5000 yrs ago, an event directly related to the shutting off of the sand supply caused by the deposition of overbank muds that covered and sealed the floodplain surface. During the middle Holocene, the river may have dried intermittently with the floodplain becoming deflated and local sand dunes forming on the floodplain. After 5000 yrs the climate was less arid and the river shifted to a regime of increased flooding and overbank deposition of silt and clay. By 2500 yrs, a late Holocene period of wet climate resulted in further overbank deposition and the formation of a cumulic Mollisol across the floodplain, the Socorro paleosol. The period of wet climate corresponds to the Audubon Neoglacial and active rock glaciers in the southern Rocky Mountains, speleothem growth in nearby caves, and other evidence for wet-cool conditions in the region. After 1000 yrs, the climate became drier, and the deposition and accumulation of overbank muds by the flooding Rio Grande came to a halt. Even though the river has flooded often in historic times, and presumably during late prehistoric times as well, there is little evidence for deposition of overbank sediments on the floodplain since A.D. 1000. Accordingly, the present-day surface of the Lower Valley is ten centuries old. Three channels occur on the US side of the Lower Valley floodplain, and during the past 2500 yrs stream flow has shifted from one to the other by the avulsion process of channel

  3. Reconstructing Holocene temperature and salinity variations in the western Baltic Sea region: a multi-proxy comparison from the Little Belt (IODP Expedition 347, Site M0059

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    U. Kotthoff


    Full Text Available Sediment records recovered from the Baltic Sea during Integrated Ocean Drilling Program Expedition 347 provide a unique opportunity to study paleoenvironmental and climate change in central and northern Europe. Such studies contribute to a better understanding of how environmental parameters change in continental shelf seas and enclosed basins. Here we present a multi-proxy-based reconstruction of paleotemperature (both marine and terrestrial, paleosalinity, and paleoecosystem changes from the Little Belt (Site M0059 over the past  ∼  8000 years and evaluate the applicability of inorganic- and organic-based proxies in this particular setting. All salinity proxies (diatoms, aquatic palynomorphs, ostracods, diol index show that lacustrine conditions occurred in the Little Belt until  ∼  7400 cal yr BP. A connection to the Kattegat at this time can thus be excluded, but a direct connection to the Baltic Proper may have existed. The transition to the brackish–marine conditions of the Littorina Sea stage (more saline and warmer occurred within  ∼  200 years when the connection to the Kattegat became established after  ∼  7400 cal yr BP. The different salinity proxies used here generally show similar trends in relative changes in salinity, but often do not allow quantitative estimates of salinity. The reconstruction of water temperatures is associated with particularly large uncertainties and variations in absolute values by up to 8 °C for bottom waters and up to 16 °C for surface waters. Concerning the reconstruction of temperature using foraminiferal Mg  /  Ca ratios, contamination by authigenic coatings in the deeper intervals may have led to an overestimation of temperatures. Differences in results based on the lipid paleothermometers (long chain diol index and TEXL86 can partly be explained by the application of modern-day proxy calibrations to intervals that experienced significant


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. G. Maas


    Full Text Available Glacier Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs depict an environmental risk with an increasing damage potential in many regions of the world. GLOFs are often caused by glacier margin lakes, which suddenly find a drainage path underneath the bottom of a glacier, which is destabilized and retreating as a consequence of local or global climate changes. In a typical GLOF event, a glacier margin lake may drain completely in 24 hours, causing a large flood wave in the area downstream the glacier. The paper documents some recent GLOF events in the Northern Patagonian Icefield (Chile and presents a terrestrial photogrammetric glacier margin lake monitoring system. The system is based on a camera taking images at regular time intervals. In these images, variations of the water level can be detected by tracking the water-land interface at pre-defined image spots. Due to the drainage mechanism, which is characterized by progressive erosion and melting at the bottom of the glacier, GLOFs are indicated by a progressive water level drop in the lake. Water level changes may be detected with subpixel accuracy by image sequence processing methods. If a 3D model of the lake bottom topography (or at least one height profile through the lake exists, water level changes in monoscopic image sequences may be transformed into volume loss. The basic idea herein is the intersection of a terrain profile with a water level detected in the image and projected into object space. The camera orientation is determined through a GPS-supported photogrammetric network. Camera orientation changes, which may for instance be induced by wind, can be compensated by tracking some fiducial marks in the image. The system has been used in a pilot study at two glacier margin lakes in the Northern Patagonian Icefield. These lakes have a depth of about 80 - 100 meters. The larger one has a length of 5 km and a maximum volume of about 200,000,000 cubic meters. During the pilot study, several GLOF events

  5. Late-glacial and Holocene history of changes in Quelccaya Ice Cap, Peru (United States)

    Kelly, M. A.; Lowell, T. V.; Schaefer, J. M.; Finkel, R. C.


    Quelccaya Ice Cap in the southeastern Peruvian Andes (~13-14° S latitude) is an icon for climate change. Its rapidly receding outlet, Qori Kalis Glacier, has been monitored since the 1970's. Cores from Quelccaya Ice Cap provide high-resolution information about temperature and precipitation during the past 1,500 years. We extend the understanding of past changes in Quelccaya Ice Cap based on mapping and dating of glacial moraines and associated deposits. Our results include fifty 10Be ages of moraines and bedrock as well as twenty-nine 14C ages of organic material associated with moraines. These results form the basis of a chronology of changes in Quelccaya Ice Cap from ~16,000 yr BP to late Holocene time. Results from 10Be and 14C dating indicate that Quelccaya Ice Cap experienced a significant advance at 12,700-11,400 yr BP. Subsequent to this advance, the ice margin deposited at least three recessional moraine sets. Quelccaya Ice Cap receded to near its present-day margin by ~10,000 yr BP. Neoglacial advances began by ~3,000 yr BP and culminated with a maximum advance during the Little Ice Age. This chronology fits well with prior work which indicates a restricted Quelccaya Ice Cap during middle Holocene time. Moreover, the overlap between moraine and ice core data for the last 1,500 years provides a unique opportunity to assess the influences of temperature and precipitation on past ice cap extents.

  6. Neoglacial Antarctic sea-ice expansion driven by mid-Holocene retreat of the Ross Ice Shelf. (United States)

    Bendle, J. A.; Newton, K.; Mckay, R. M.; Crosta, X.; Etourneau, J.; Anya, A. B.; Seki, O.; Golledge, N. R.; Bertler, N. A. N.; Willmott, V.; Schouten, S.; Riesselman, C. R.; Masse, G.; Dunbar, R. B.


    Recent decades have seen expanding Antarctic sea-ice coverage, coeval with thinning West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) ice shelves and the rapid freshening of surface and bottom waters along the Antarctic margin. The mid-Holocene Neoglacial transition represents the last comparable baseline shift in sea-ice behaviour. The drivers and feedbacks involved in both the recent and Holocene events are poorly understood and characterised by large proxy-model mismatches. We present new records of compound specific fatty acid isotope analyses (δ2H-FA), highly-branched isoprenoid alkenes (HBIs) TEX86L temperatures, grain-size, mass accumulations rates (MARs) and image analyses from a 171m Holocene sediment sequence from Site U1357 (IODP leg 318). In combination with published records we reconstruct Holocene changes in glacial meltwater, sedimentary inputs and sea-ice. The early Holocene (11 to 10 ka) is characterised by large fluctuations in inputs of deglacial meltwater and sediments and seismic evidence of downlapping material from the south, suggesting a dominating influence from glacial retreat of the local outlet glaciers. From 10 to 8 ka there is decreasing meltwater inputs, an onlapping drift and advection of material from the east. After ca. 8 ka positively correlated δ2H-FA and MARs infer that pulses of glacial melt correlate to stronger easterly currents, driving erosion of material from upstream banks and that the Ross Ice Shelf (RIS) becomes a major influence. A large mid-Holocene meltwater pulse (preceded by warming TEX86L temperatures) is evident between ca. 6 to 4.5 ka, culminating in a rapid and permanent increase in sea-ice from 4.5 ka. This is coeval with cosmogenic nuclide evidence for a rapid thinning of the Antarctic ice sheet during the mid-Holocene (Hein et al., 2016). We suggest this represents a final major pulse of deglaciation from the Ross Ice Shelf, which initiates the Neoglacial, driving cool surface waters along the coast and greater sea

  7. The Mt Logan Holocene-late Wisconsinan isotope record

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe; Fisher, David; Osterberg, Erich


    Mt Logan • stable isotopes • Holocene • ENSO • peat • N Pacific • sudden change Udgivelsesdato: August......Mt Logan • stable isotopes • Holocene • ENSO • peat • N Pacific • sudden change Udgivelsesdato: August...

  8. Reconstruction of early Holocene paleoclimate and environment in the SW Kola region, Russian Arctic (United States)

    Grekov, Ivan; Kolka, Vasiliy; Syrykh, Liudmila; Nazarova, Larisa


    In the current period of the global climate change it becomes necessary to have a clear understanding of not only the changes taking place in the components of the natural environment, but also to understand development of all interactions between those components. Quaternary terrigenic sediments and lakes of the Kola Peninsula store information about the development of the region in the Late Glacial and Holocene: movements of the glacier, neotectonic activity, post-glacial rebound, formation and development of natural environments after deglaciation. Multi-proxy study of landscapes evolution of the Kola Peninsula in the Late Quaternary will help to establish a detailed reconstruction of climatic and environmental changes of this poor studied sector of the Arctic. Quaternary history on the Kola Peninsula is represented mainly by Late Pleistocene and Holocene sediments covering the Baltic Shield (Lavrova, 1960; Evzerov, 2015). Several palaeolimnological investigations in the Baltic Shield area have been performed earlier (Donner et al., 1977; Anundsen, 1985; Berglund, 2004). Studies of the southern coast of the Kola Peninsula have shown that marine transgression took place in the Late Pleistocene that was then replaced by a regression with variable speed. The slowdown of the uplift of the area took place between 8800 - 6800 BP (cal. years) and corresponded to the time of the Tapes transgression of the Arctic Ocean (Evzerov et al. 2010; Kolka, et al., 2013). Palaeoclimatic studies based on micro-paleontological analyzes indicate uneven development of the Kola Peninsula landscapes in the Late Glacial and Early Holocene. The northern coast of the Peninsula became free of ice first. In this area tundra-steppe vegetation was established for a short time and was later replaced by tundra (Snyder et al, 2000). Southern part of the Kola Peninsula was dependent on the conditions of deglaciation of the White Sea basin and cleared of ice much later (Evzerov et al., 2010; Kolka

  9. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene surficial deposits and landforms of Yosemite Valley, California (United States)

    Haddon, E. K.; Stock, G. M.; Booth, D. B.


    Field studies on the surficial geology and geomorphology of Yosemite Valley since the 1870's formed an early basis for our understanding of Quaternary landscape evolution in the central Sierra Nevada. These landmark studies described the erosional origin of Yosemite's iconic scenery, but left details of the latest Pleistocene and Holocene sedimentary record for later investigation. We combined mapping of deposits and landforms with geochronology to reconstruct the geomorphic evolution of Yosemite Valley since the 15 ka retreat of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) valley glacier. We document a sustained period of relative landscape stability, characterized by valley-bottom aggradation of glacial till, fluvial sediments, and lacustrine silts, as well as valley-margin accumulation of talus and fan alluvium. Recessional moraines, episodically emplaced rock avalanches, and alluvial fans impeded surface flow and controlled the local base level. This predominantly aggradational regime then shifted to incision in the earliest Holocene, likely due to a diminishing supply of glacial sediment, and created a flight of fluvial terraces inset by up to 9 m. The volume of fringing talus and fan alluvium in comparison with fluvial terrace sequences emphasizes the importance of valley-wall erosion as a sediment source. Cosmogenic 10Be exposure ages from rock avalanche boulders and 14C charcoal ages from deltaic sequences and inset fluvial gravels suggest variable rates of Holocene river incision. Although some incision events likely record local base level changes at the El Capitan LGM recessional moraine, the presence of perched, well-developed outwash terraces downstream indicates a more regional climatic forcing. These findings, including the depositional record of land-use disturbances over the past two centuries, help illuminate the geologic evolution of this celebrated landscape and inform ongoing river-restoration work.

  10. South America Monsoon variability on millennial to multi-centennial time scale during the Holocene in central eastern Brazil (United States)

    Strikis, N. M.; Cruz, F. W.; Cheng, H.; Karmann, I.; Vuille, M.; Edwards, R.; Wang, X.; Paula, M. S.; Novello, V. F.; Auler, A.


    A paleoprecipitation reconstruction based on high resolution and well-dated speleothem oxygen isotope records shows that the monsoon precipitation over central eastern Brazil underwent to strong variations on millennial to multi-centennial time-scales during the Holocene. This new record indicates that abrupt events of increase in monsoon precipitation are correlated to Bond events 6, 5 and 4 and also with 8.2 ky event during the early and mid-Holocene, with a mean amplitude of 1.5 % (PDB). The pacing and structure of such events are general consistent with variations in solar activity suggested by atmospheric Δ14 C records. In the late-Holocene, abrupt events of increase in monsoon precipitation peaking at 3.2, 2.7 and 2.3 ky B.P. are approximately synchronous with periods of low solar minima. In this regard, the most prominent event occurred during the late Holocene occurred at ~2.7 ky B.P. In addition, these positive anomalies of the precipitation recorded in central eastern Brazil are also in good agreement with variations in Titicaca lake level. The good correspondence between the speleothem and marine records imply that the variations in the north Atlantic sea surface temperature is the main forcing for abrupt millennial to multi-centennial precipitations variation within the region under influence of South American Monsoon.

  11. Coring of Karakel’ Lake sediments (Teberda River valley and prospects for reconstruction of glaciation and Holocene climate history in the Caucasus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. N. Solomina


    Full Text Available Lacustrine sediments represent an important data source for glacial and palaeoclimatic reconstructions. Having a number of certain advantages, they can be successfully used as a means of specification of glacier situation and age of moraine deposits, as well as a basis for detailed climatic models of the Holocene. The article focuses on the coring of sediments of Lake Kakakel (Western Caucasus that has its goal to clarify the Holocene climatic history for the region, providing the sampling methods, lithologic description of the sediment core, obtained radiocarbon dating and the element composition of the sediments. The primary outlook over the results of coring of the sediments of the Lake Karakyol helped to reconsider the conventional opinion on the glacial fluctuations in the valley of Teberda and to assume the future possibility for high-definition palaeoclimatic reconstruction for Western Caucasus.

  12. Spatial distribution of mercury in southeastern Alaskan streams influenced by glaciers, wetlands, and salmon

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nagorski, Sonia A.; Engstrom, Daniel R.; Hudson, John P.; Krabbenhoft, David P.; Hood, Eran; DeWild, John F.; Aiken, George R.


    Southeastern Alaska is a remote coastal-maritime ecosystem that is experiencing increased deposition of mercury (Hg) as well as rapid glacier loss. Here we present the results of the first reported survey of total and methyl Hg (MeHg) concentrations in regional streams and biota. Overall, streams draining large wetland areas had higher Hg concentrations in water, mayflies, and juvenile salmon than those from glacially-influenced or recently deglaciated watersheds. Filtered MeHg was positively correlated with wetland abundance. Aqueous Hg occurred predominantly in the particulate fraction of glacier streams but in the filtered fraction of wetland-rich streams. Colonization by anadromous salmon in both glacier and wetland-rich streams may be contributing additional marine-derived Hg. The spatial distribution of Hg in the range of streams presented here shows that watersheds are variably, yet fairly predictably, sensitive to atmospheric and marine inputs of Hg. -- Highlights: • We sampled 21 streams in southeastern Alaska for water, sediments, and biota. • Aqueous Hg showed significant relationships with wetlands and DOC. • Biota had higher mercury in wetland-rich streams than in glacier-fed streams. • Spawning salmon appear to contribute methylmercury to stream foodwebs. -- This original survey of mercury concentration and form in southeastern Alaskan streamwater and biota shows substantial spatial variation linked to landscape factors and salmon influence

  13. Bacterial diversity in the foreland of the Tianshan No. 1 glacier, China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu Xiukun; Zhang Wei; Liu Guangxiu; Zhang Gaosen; Yang Xuan; Hu Ping; Chen Tuo; Li Zhongqin


    There is compelling evidence that glaciers are retreating in many mountainous areas of the world due to global warming. With this glacier retreat, new habitats are being exposed that are colonized by microorganisms whose diversity and function are less well studied. Here, we characterized bacterial diversity along the chronosequences of the glacier No. 1 foreland that follows glacier retreat. An average of 10 000 sequences was obtained from each sample by 454 pyrosequencing. Using non-parametric and rarefaction estimated analysis, we found bacterial phylotype richness was high. The bacterial species turnover rate was especially high between sites exposed for 6 and 10 yr. Pyrosequencing showed tremendous bacterial diversity, among which the Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria were found to be present at larger numbers at the study area. Meanwhile, the proportion of Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria decreased and the proportion of Acidobacteria increased along the chronosequences. Some known functional bacterial genera were also detected and the sulfur- and sulfate-reducing bacteria were present in a lower proportion of sequences. These findings suggest that high-throughput pyrosequencing can comprehensively detect bacteria in the foreland, including rare groups, and give a deeper understanding of the bacterial community structure and variation along the chronosequences. (letter)

  14. Bacterial diversity in the foreland of the Tianshan No. 1 glacier, China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xiukun, Wu; Wei, Zhang; Guangxiu, Liu; Gaosen, Zhang [Key Laboratory of Desert and Desertification, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou (China); Xuan, Yang; Ping, Hu [School of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Lanzhou Jiaotong University, Lanzhou (China); Tuo, Chen; Li Zhongqin, E-mail: [State Key Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences, Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou (China)


    There is compelling evidence that glaciers are retreating in many mountainous areas of the world due to global warming. With this glacier retreat, new habitats are being exposed that are colonized by microorganisms whose diversity and function are less well studied. Here, we characterized bacterial diversity along the chronosequences of the glacier No. 1 foreland that follows glacier retreat. An average of 10 000 sequences was obtained from each sample by 454 pyrosequencing. Using non-parametric and rarefaction estimated analysis, we found bacterial phylotype richness was high. The bacterial species turnover rate was especially high between sites exposed for 6 and 10 yr. Pyrosequencing showed tremendous bacterial diversity, among which the Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria were found to be present at larger numbers at the study area. Meanwhile, the proportion of Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria decreased and the proportion of Acidobacteria increased along the chronosequences. Some known functional bacterial genera were also detected and the sulfur- and sulfate-reducing bacteria were present in a lower proportion of sequences. These findings suggest that high-throughput pyrosequencing can comprehensively detect bacteria in the foreland, including rare groups, and give a deeper understanding of the bacterial community structure and variation along the chronosequences. (letter)

  15. A complex relationship between calving glaciers and climate (United States)

    Post, A.; O'Neel, S.; Motyka, R.J.; Streveler, G.


    Many terrestrial glaciers are sensitive indicators of past and present climate change as atmospheric temperature and snowfall modulate glacier volume. However, climate interpretations based on glacier behavior require careful selection of representative glaciers, as was recently pointed out for surging and debris-covered glaciers, whose behavior often defies regional glacier response to climate [Yde and Paasche, 2010]. Tidewater calving glaciers (TWGs)mountain glaciers whose termini reach the sea and are generally grounded on the seaflooralso fall into the category of non-representative glaciers because the regional-scale asynchronous behavior of these glaciers clouds their complex relationship with climate. TWGs span the globe; they can be found both fringing ice sheets and in high-latitude regions of each hemisphere. TWGs are known to exhibit cyclic behavior, characterized by slow advance and rapid, unstable retreat, largely independent of short-term climate forcing. This so-called TWG cycle, first described by Post [1975], provides a solid foundation upon which modern investigations of TWG stability are built. Scientific understanding has developed rapidly as a result of the initial recognition of their asynchronous cyclicity, rendering greater insight into the hierarchy of processes controlling regional behavior. This has improved the descriptions of the strong dynamic feedbacks present during retreat, the role of the ocean in TWG dynamics, and the similarities and differences between TWG and ice sheet outlet glaciers that can often support floating tongues.

  16. A Facies Model for Temperate Continental Glaciers. (United States)

    Ashley, Gail Mowry


    Discusses the presence and dynamics of continental glaciers in the domination of the physical processes of erosion and deposition in the mid-latitudes during the Pleistocene period. Describes the use of a sedimentary facies model as a guide to recognizing ancient temperate continental glacial deposits. (TW)

  17. Pattern of Glacier Recession in Indian Himalaya (United States)

    Singh, Ajay; Patwardhan, Anand

    All currently available climate models predict a near-surface warming trend under the influence of rising levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. In addition to the direct effects on climate — for example, on the frequency of heat waves — this increase in surface temperatures has important consequences for the cryosphere subsequently hydrological cycle, particularly in regions where water supply is currently dominated by melting snow or ice. The Indian Himalayan region occupies a special place in the mountain ecosystems of the world. These geodynamically young mountains are not only important from the standpoint of climate and as a provider of life, giving water to a large part of the Indian subcontinent, but they also harbor a rich variety of flora, fauna, human communities and cultural diversity. Glaciers in this region are changing in area as well as in volume like those in other parts of the world. Studies have been carried out for recession in some of these glaciers using remote sensing as well as field observation techniques. Spatiotemporal pattern in the recession rate of the studied glaciers has been presented in this paper. Plausible causes for the recession have been also discussed. Finally, future scopes for observation and analysis in glaciers recession have been suggested.

  18. Holocene tephra deposits in the northern Okinawa Trough

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)


    The mineralogical and geochemical characteristics of sediments of Core CSH1, which was collected from the northern Okinawa Trough, indicate that large amounts of volcanic materials have deposited in the northern Okinawa Trough during the Holocene. On the basis of down-core variations in mineral and element contents of sediments, two layers in the uppermost section of Core CSH1 characterized by high quartz, Na2O, MnO, K2O, uranium contents and low contents of clay minerals, volatiles, Fe2O3, MgO, CaO and strontium, have been identified as the tephra deposits. Systematic grain-size measurements also suggest that sediments from the northern Okinawa Trough are made up of terrigenous materials and volcanic ashes with different proportion during the Holocene. The sediments of tephra layers in Core CSH1 show bi-modal patterns in grain-size distribution with modal grain-sizes of 74.3 and 7.81 μm,respectively. According to the radiocarbon dating on shells of zooplankton foraminifera, two tephra layers in Core CSH1, formed at 7 250 and 10 870 a BP (cal), approximately correspond to the K-Ah tephra [7 300 a BP (cal)] and the eruption of Kuju Volcano (12~10 ka BP), respectively.

  19. Temporal variability in discharge and benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages in a tropical glacier-fed stream

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jacobsen, Dean; Andino, Patricio; Calvez, Roger


    discharge parameters 3, 6, 9, 21, and 45 d before sampling. The effect of flow (slopes of regressions of faunal metrics vs flow) did not differ among sites, but the amount of variation explained by flow was significant only at the 2 downstream sites. Little synchrony was found in variability among sites......-fed stream, a prerequisite for subsequent predictions of consequences of tropical glacier melting on diversity, composition, and stability of stream communities....

  20. The Greater Caucasus Glacier Inventory (Russia, Georgia and Azerbaijan) (United States)

    Tielidze, Levan G.; Wheate, Roger D.


    There have been numerous studies of glaciers in the Greater Caucasus, but none that have generated a modern glacier database across the whole mountain range. Here, we present an updated and expanded glacier inventory at three time periods (1960, 1986, 2014) covering the entire Greater Caucasus. Large-scale topographic maps and satellite imagery (Corona, Landsat 5, Landsat 8 and ASTER) were used to conduct a remote-sensing survey of glacier change, and the 30 m resolution Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer Global Digital Elevation Model (ASTER GDEM; 17 November 2011) was used to determine the aspect, slope and height distribution of glaciers. Glacier margins were mapped manually and reveal that in 1960 the mountains contained 2349 glaciers with a total glacier surface area of 1674.9 ± 70.4 km2. By 1986, glacier surface area had decreased to 1482.1 ± 64.4 km2 (2209 glaciers), and by 2014 to 1193.2 ± 54.0 km2 (2020 glaciers). This represents a 28.8 ± 4.4 % (481 ± 21.2 km2) or 0.53 % yr-1 reduction in total glacier surface area between 1960 and 2014 and an increase in the rate of area loss since 1986 (0.69 % yr-1) compared to 1960-1986 (0.44 % yr-1). Glacier mean size decreased from 0.70 km2 in 1960 to 0.66 km2 in 1986 and to 0.57 km2 in 2014. This new glacier inventory has been submitted to the Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS) database and can be used as a basis data set for future studies.

  1. Glaciers along proposed routes extending the Copper River Highway, Alaska (United States)

    Glass, R.L.


    Three inland highway routes are being considered by the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities to connect the community of Cordova in southcentral Alaska to a statewide road system. The routes use part of a Copper River and Northwest Railway alignment along the Copper River through mountainous terrain having numerous glaciers. An advance of any of several glaciers could block and destroy the roadway, whereas retreating glaciers expose large quantities of unconsolidated, unvegetated, and commonly ice-rich sediments. The purpose of this study was to map historical locations of glacier termini near these routes and to describe hazards associated with glaciers and seasonal snow. Historical and recent locations of glacier termini along the proposed Copper River Highway routes were determined by reviewing reports and maps and by interpreting aerial photographs. The termini of Childs, Grinnell, Tasnuna, and Woodworth Glaciers were 1 mile or less from a proposed route in the most recently available aerial photography (1978-91); the termini of Allen, Heney, and Schwan Glaciers were 1.5 miles or less from a proposed route. In general, since 1911, most glaciers have slowly retreated, but many glaciers have had occasional advances. Deserted Glacier and one of its tributary glaciers have surge-type medial moraines, indicating potential rapid advances. The terminus of Deserted Glacier was about 2.1 miles from a proposed route in 1978, but showed no evidence of surging. Snow and rock avalanches and snowdrifts are common along the proposed routes and will periodically obstruct the roadway. Floods from ice-dammed lakes also pose a threat. For example, Van Cleve Lake, adjacent to Miles Glacier, is as large as 4.4 square miles and empties about every 6 years. Floods from drainages of Van Cleve Lake have caused the Copper River to rise on the order of 20 feet at Million Dollar Bridge.

  2. Changes in the Surface Area of Glaciers in Northern Eurasia (United States)

    Khromova, T.; Nosenko, G.


    Glaciers are widely recognized as key indicators of climate change. Recent evidence suggests an acceleration of glacier mass loss in several key mountain regions. Glacier recession implies the landscape changes in the glacial zone, origin of new lakes and activation of natural disaster processes, catastrophic mudflows, ice avalanches, outburst floods, and etc. The presence of glaciers in itself threats to human life, economic activity and growing infrastructure. Economical and recreational human activity in mountain regions requires relevant information on snow and ice objects. Absence or inadequacy of such information results in financial and human losses. A more comprehensive evaluation of glacier changes is imperative to assess ice contributions to global sea level rise and the future of water resources from glacial basins. One of the urgent steps is a full inventory of all ice bodies, their volume and changes The first estimation of glaciers state and glaciers distribution in the big part of Northern Eurasia has been done in the USSR Glacier Inventory published in 1966 -1980 as a part of IHD activity. The Inventory is based on topographic maps and air photos and reflects the status of the glaciers in 1957-1970y. There is information about 23796 glaciers with area of 78222.3 km2 in the Inventory. It covers 23 glacier systems on Northern Eurasia. In the 80th the USSR Glacier Inventory has been transformed in the digital form as a part of the World Glacier Inventory. Recent satellite data provide a unique opportunity to look again at these glaciers and to evaluate changes in glacier extent for the second part of XX century. In the paper we report about 15 000 glaciers outlines for Caucasus, Pamir, Tien-Shan, Altai, Syntar-Khayata, Cherskogo Range, Kamchatka and Russian Arctic which have been derived from ASTER and Landsat imagery and could be used for glacier changes evaluation. The results show that glaciers are retreating in all these regions. There is, however

  3. Grounding line processes on the Totten Glacier (United States)

    Cook, S.; Watson, C. S.; Galton-Fenzi, B.; Peters, L. E.; Coleman, R.


    The Totten Glacier has been an area of recent interest due to its large drainage basin, much of which is grounded below sea level and has a history of large scale grounding line movement. Reports that warm water reaches the sub-ice shelf cavity have led to speculation that it could be vulnerable to future grounding line retreat. Over the Antarctic summer 2016/17 an array of 6 GPS and autonomous phase-sensitive radar (ApRES) units were deployed in the grounding zone of the Totten Glacier. These instruments measure changes in ice velocity and thickness which can be used to investigate both ice dynamics across the grounding line, and the interaction between ice and ocean in the subglacial cavity. Basal melt rates calculated from the ApRES units on floating ice range from 1 to 17 m/a. These values are significantly lower than previous estimates of basal melt rate produced by ocean modelling of the subglacial cavity. Meanwhile, GPS-derived velocity and elevation on the surface of the ice show a strong tidal signal, as does the vertical strain rate within the ice derived from internal layering from the ApRES instruments. These results demonstrate the significance of the complex grounding pattern of the Totten Glacier. The presence of re-grounding points has significant implications for the dynamics of the glacier and the ocean circulation within the subglacial cavity. We discuss what can be learned from our in situ measurements, and how they can be used to improve models of the glacier's future behaviour.

  4. 2017 Rapid Retreat Of Thwaites Glacier (United States)

    Milillo, P.; Rignot, E. J.; Mouginot, J.; Scheuchl, B.


    We employ data from the second generation of SAR systems e.g. the Italian COSMO- SkyMed (CSK) constellation and the German TanDEM-X (TDX) formation to monitor grounding line retreat using short repeat-time interferometry and accurate InSAR DEM on Thwaites glacier in the Amundsen Sea Embayment (ASE), West Antarctica. The ASE is a marine-based ice sheet with a retrograde bed containing enough ice to raise global sea level by 120 cm. Several studies have inferred the mechanical properties of portions of ASE using observationally constrained numerical models, but these studies offer only temporal snapshots of basal mechanics owing to a dearth of observational time series. Prior attempts of grounding lines mapping have been limited because few space-borne SAR missions offer the short-term repeat pass capability required to map the differential vertical displacement of floating ice at tidal frequencies with sufficient detail to resolve grounding line boundaries in areas of fast ice deformation. Using 1-day CSK repeat pass data and TDX DEMs, we collected frequent, high-resolution grounding line measurements of Thwaites glaciers spanning 2015-2017. We compare the results with ERS data spanning 1996-2011, and Sentinel-1a 2014-2015 data. Between 2011 and 2017 we observe a maximum retreat of 5-7 km across the main Thwaites glacier tongue and Thwaites Eastern ice shelf (TEIS) corresponding to an increased retreat rate of 0.5 km/yr. Grounding line retreat has been fueled by the enhanced intrusion of warm, salty, subsurface ocean water of circumpolar deep water origin onto the continental shelf, beneath the floating ice shelf, to reach the glacier grounding zone and melt it from below at rates varying from 50 to 150 m/yr. The retreat rate varies depending on the magnitude of ice melt by the ocean, the rate of ice thinning and the shape of the glacier surface and bed topography.

  5. The influence of air temperature inversions on snowmelt and glacier mass-balance simulations, Ammassalik island, SE Greenland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mernild, Sebastian Haugard [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Liston, Glen [COLORADO STATE UNIV.


    In many applications, a realistic description of air temperature inversions is essential for accurate snow and glacier ice melt, and glacier mass-balance simulations. A physically based snow-evolution modeling system (SnowModel) was used to simulate eight years (1998/99 to 2005/06) of snow accumulation and snow and glacier ice ablation from numerous small coastal marginal glaciers on the SW-part of Ammassalik Island in SE Greenland. These glaciers are regularly influenced by inversions and sea breezes associated with the adjacent relatively low temperature and frequently ice-choked fjords and ocean. To account for the influence of these inversions on the spatiotemporal variation of air temperature and snow and glacier melt rates, temperature inversion routines were added to MircoMet, the meteorological distribution sub-model used in SnowModel. The inversions were observed and modeled to occur during 84% of the simulation period. Modeled inversions were defined not to occur during days with strong winds and high precipitation rates due to the potential of inversion break-up. Field observations showed inversions to extend from sea level to approximately 300 m a.s.l., and this inversion level was prescribed in the model simulations. Simulations with and without the inversion routines were compared. The inversion model produced air temperature distributions with warmer lower elevation areas and cooler higher elevation areas than without inversion routines due to the use of cold sea-breeze base temperature data from underneath the inversion. This yielded an up to 2 weeks earlier snowmelt in the lower areas and up to 1 to 3 weeks later snowmelt in the higher elevation areas of the simulation domain. Averaged mean annual modeled surface mass-balance for all glaciers (mainly located above the inversion layer) was -720 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} for inversion simulations, and -880 {+-} 620 mm w.eq. y{sup -1} without the inversion routines, a difference of 160 mm w.eq. y

  6. Holocene precipitation changes in the deep tropics recorded by Speleothems (Invited) (United States)

    Wang, X.; Auler, A. S.; Edwards, R.; Kong, X.; Cheng, H.; Cruz, F. W.; Wang, Y.; Broecker, W. S.


    We have obtained a high-resolution oxygen isotope (δ18O) record of cave calcite from Paraiso Cave, eastern Amazon, which covers most of the Holocene. Its chronology was determined by U-Th ages from three column-shaped stalagmites. Their δ18O profiles replicate among their contemporaneous growth periods. Therefore, the samples were likely precipitated under equilibrium conditions and their oxygen isotopic variations are primarily caused by climate change. We find that the δ18O decreases steadily from ~11.0 to 5.0 thousand years ago, with a growth gap between ~8.4 to 6.3 thousand years ago, and then gradually increases until the present. The large amplitude of the δ18O change (up to 4 per mil) suggests that the variation in δ18O value is dominated by meteoric precipitation change at this equatorial site. In order to investigate the interactions between the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ), monsoons and El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) activity during the Holocene, we compare the Paraiso record to speleothem records from other locations in the deep tropics, namely, cave sites from Flores, Borneo and Peru. We find that all these speleothem records are consistent, with a progressive δ18O decrease (rainfall increase) during the early Holocene, probably in response to the southward retreat of the ITCZ from its northernmost location in the early Holocene. This is evident from the strong anti-correlation between the speleothem monsoonal records from China and southern Brazil. However, our record is distinct from the others during the last 4 thousand years, when it switches to a continuous δ18O increase (rainfall decrease) trend, while the others flatten out. We propose that, during the late Holocene, the strengthened South American Summer Monsoon may override the ENSO influence and cause the discrepancy in precipitation between eastern Amazon and other deep tropical cave sites.

  7. Surge of a Complex Glacier System - The Current Surge of the Bering-Bagley Glacier System, Alaska (United States)

    Herzfeld, U. C.; McDonald, B.; Trantow, T.; Hale, G.; Stachura, M.; Weltman, A.; Sears, T.


    Understanding fast glacier flow and glacial accelerations is important for understanding changes in the cryosphere and ultimately in sea level. Surge-type glaciers are one of four types of fast-flowing glaciers --- the other three being continuously fast-flowing glaciers, fjord glaciers and ice streams --- and the one that has seen the least amount of research. The Bering-Bagley Glacier System, Alaska, the largest glacier system in North America, surged in 2011 and 2012. Velocities decreased towards the end of 2011, while the surge kinematics continued to expand. A new surge phase started in summer and fall 2012. In this paper, we report results from airborne observations collected in September 2011, June/July and September/October 2012 and in 2013. Airborne observations include simultaneously collected laser altimeter data, videographic data, GPS data and photographic data and are complemented by satellite data analysis. Methods range from classic interpretation of imagery to analysis and classification of laser altimeter data and connectionist (neural-net) geostatistical classification of concurrent airborne imagery. Results focus on the characteristics of surge progression in a large and complex glacier system (as opposed to a small glacier with relatively simple geometry). We evaluate changes in surface elevations including mass transfer and sudden drawdowns, crevasse types, accelerations and changes in the supra-glacial and englacial hydrologic system. Supraglacial water in Bering Glacier during Surge, July 2012 Airborne laser altimeter profile across major rift in central Bering Glacier, Sept 2011

  8. Measuring Surface Deformation in Glacier Retreated Areas Based on Ps-Insar - Geladandong Glacier as a Case Study (United States)

    Mohamadi, B.; Balz, T.


    Glaciers are retreating in many parts of the world as a result of global warming. Many researchers consider Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau as a reference for climate change by measuring glaciers retreat on the plateau. This retreat resulted in some topographic changes in retreated areas, and in some cases can lead to geohazards as landslides, and rock avalanches, which is known in glacier retreated areas as paraglacial slope failure (PSF). In this study, Geladandong biggest and main glacier mass was selected to estimate surface deformation on its glacier retreated areas and define potential future PSF based on PS-InSAR technique. 56 ascending and 49 descending images were used to fulfill this aim. Geladandong glacier retreated areas were defined based on the maximum extent of the glacier in the little ice age. Results revealed a general uplift in the glacier retreated areas with velocity less than 5mm/year. Obvious surface motion was revealed in seven parts surround glacier retreated areas with high relative velocity reached ±60mm/year in some parts. Four parts were considered as PSF potential motion, and two of them showed potential damage for the main road in the study area in case of rock avalanche into recent glacier lakes that could result in glacier lake outburst flooding heading directly to the road. Finally, further analysis and field investigations are needed to define the main reasons for different types of deformation and estimate future risks of these types of surface motion in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

  9. Modelling glacier-bed overdeepenings and possible future lakes for the glaciers in the Himalaya-Karakoram region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Linsbauer, A.; Frey, H.; Haeberli, W.


    Surface digital elevation models (DEMs) and slope-related estimates of glacier thickness enable modelling of glacier-bed topographies over large ice-covered areas. Due to the erosive power of glaciers, such bed topographies can contain numerous overdeepenings, which when exposed following glacier...... retreat may fill with water and form new lakes. In this study, the bed overdeepenings for ∼28000 glaciers (40 775km2) of the Himalaya-Karakoram region are modelled using GlabTop2 (Glacier Bed Topography model version 2), in which ice thickness is inferred from surface slope by parameterizing basal shear...... stress as a function of elevation range for each glacier. The modelled ice thicknesses are uncertain (±30%), but spatial patterns of ice thickness and bed elevation primarily depend on surface slopes as derived from the DEM and, hence, are more robust. About 16 000 overdeepenings larger than 104m2 were...

  10. Spatial features of glacier changes in the Barents-Kara Sector (United States)

    Sharov, A. I.; Schöner, W.; Pail, R.


    steepened. Significant positive height changes of 25 to 50 m were also registered at several insular ice caps smaller than 300 km² with top heights of about 300 m. At sub-regional scale the horizontal distribution of glacier changes was not uniform and correlated astonishingly well with the geopotential field represented in existing gravity anomaly maps of the Arctic. The locations of positive glacier changes systematically neighbored with the locations of strong positive gravity anomalies. Conversely, the largest negative changes were situated in the close vicinity of negative anomalies. Hence we supposed that significant lateral variations of geopotential might influence the local intensity of solid precipitation, snow accumulation rate and glacier regime in the High Arctic. A basic set of simple differential equations describing glacioclimatic settings in the heterogeneous field of gravity was compiled and critically compared with the relevant knowledge obtained by some other investigators. As a result, a new working hypothesis about gravity driven fluctuations in the long-term regime of cryospheric resources was devised and argued. First numerical simulations, statistical analyses of meteorological and tidal data rows, error balance estimates and specific glaciological surveys in 2001, 2006 and 2008 demonstrated major spatiotemporal singularities, principal methodological advantages and a higher feasibility of the proposed hypothesis compared to similar empirical-theoretical concepts developed by "lunarists" and "astro-meteorologists". New remote sensing data to be obtained from GOCE and CryoSat-2 satellites over the Barents-Kara Sector, which represents the largest cluster of tidewater glaciers and gravity anomalies in the Old World, might essentially contribute to the verification of this still conjectural theory.

  11. A Southern Ocean trigger for Northwest Pacific ventilation during the Holocene? (United States)

    Rella, S. F.; Uchida, M.


    Holocene ocean circulation is poorly understood due to sparsity of dateable marine archives with submillennial-scale resolution. Here we present a record of mid-depth water radiocarbon contents in the Northwest (NW) Pacific Ocean over the last 12.000 years, which shows remarkable millennial-scale variations relative to changes in atmospheric radiocarbon inventory. Apparent decoupling of these variations from regional ventilation and mixing processes leads us to the suggestion that the mid-depth NW Pacific may have responded to changes in Southern Ocean overturning forced by latitudinal displacements of the southern westerly winds. By inference, a tendency of in-phase related North Atlantic and Southern Ocean overturning would argue against the development of a steady bipolar seesaw regime during the Holocene.

  12. Large floods and climatic change during the Holocene on the Ara River, Central Japan (United States)

    Grossman, Michael J.


    A reconstruction of part of the Holocene large flood record for the Ara River in central Japan is presented. Maximum intermediate gravel-size dimensions of terrace and modern floodplain gravels were measured along an 18-km reach of the river and were used in tractive force equations to estimate minimum competent flood depths. Results suggest that the magnitudes of large floods on the Ara River have varied in a non-random fashion since the end of the last glacial period. Large floods with greater magnitudes occurred during the warming period of the post-glacial and the warmer early to middle Holocene (to ˜5500 years BP). A shift in the magnitudes of large floods occurred ˜5500-5000 years BP. From this time, during the cooler middle to late Holocene, large floods generally had lower magnitudes. In the modern period, large flood magnitudes are the largest in the data set. As typhoons are the main cause of large floods on the Ara River in the modern record, the variation in large flood magnitudes suggests that the incidence of typhoon visits to the central Japan changed as the climate changed during the Holocene. Further, significant dates in the large flood record on the Ara River correspond to significant dates in Europe and the USA.

  13. Assessing millennial-scale variability during the Holocene: A perspective from the western tropical Pacific (United States)

    Khider, D.; Jackson, C. S.; Stott, L. D.


    We investigate the relationship between tropical Pacific and Southern Ocean variability during the Holocene using the stable oxygen isotope and magnesium/calcium records of cooccurring planktonic and benthic foraminifera from a marine sediment core collected in the western equatorial Pacific. The planktonic record exhibits millennial-scale sea surface temperature (SST) oscillations over the Holocene of 0.5°C while the benthic δ18Oc document 0.10‰ millennial-scale changes of Upper Circumpolar Deep Water (UCDW), a water mass which outcrops in the Southern Ocean. Solar forcing as an explanation for millennial-scale SST variability requires (1) a large climate sensitivity and (2) a long 400 year delayed response, suggesting that if solar forcing is the cause of the variability, it would need to be considerably amplified by processes within the climate system at least at the core location. We also explore the possibility that SST variability arose from volcanic forcing using a simple red noise model. Our best estimates of volcanic forcing falls short of reproducing the amplitude of observed SST variations although it produces power at low-frequency similar to that observed in the MD81 record. Although we cannot totally discount the volcanic and solar forcing hypotheses, we are left to consider that the most plausible source for Holocene millennial-scale variability lies within the climate system itself. In particular, UCDW variability coincided with deep North Atlantic changes, indicating a role for the deep ocean in Holocene millennial-scale variability.

  14. Debris-covered glaciers during the LGM and Lateglacial at the eastern margin of the Alps (United States)

    Seidl, Sabrina; Reitner, Jürgen M.; Wagreich, Michael


    We present the reconstruction of paleo-glaciers in the easternmost part of the Alps (Schneeberg mountain) with the main focus on sedimentology, chronology and glacial dynamics. The area is dominantly made up of limestone bedrock and hence characterized by steep slopes and cirques. Two juvenile moraine-systems can be deciphered based on geological mapping. The major system is characterized by an up to 60 m high latero-frontal dump moraine with a prominent breach-lobe moraine in a lateral position. It is regarded to represent the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM; Würm Pleniglacial). The other system is much smaller and was formed most probably during the Würm Lateglacial. The angular to subangular shape of the clasts and the abundant boulders on top of the ridges indicate a high portion of passive (Boulton, 1978) i.e. supraglacial and englacial transport of debris before deposition.Thus the model of a debris-covered glacier is favored to explain both landforms and as well the corresponding sediment facies. For the pleniglacial moraine such an assumption is backed by a low accumulation/ablation area ratio (AAR) of around 1:1 based on the reconstruction of the equilibrium line altitude (ELA) using the maximum elevation of lateral moraines (MELM; Lichtenecker, 1938). Furthermore as there is no indication of a former glacier snout glacio-fluvial processes should have played a limited role in sediment transport into the forefield. Such setting pinpoints to very cold-arid conditions, which are as well found in paleo-climate reconstructions of the eastern foreland (Frenzel et al. 1992). Boulton, G.S., 1978: Boulder shapes and grain-size distribution of debris as indicators of transport paths through a glacier and till genesis.- Sedimentology, 25, 773-799. Lichtenecker, N.,1938. Die gegenwärtige und die eiszeitliche Schneegrenze in den Ostalpen. In: Verhandlungen der III. Internationalen Quartär - Konferenz, Vienna, 1936, 141-147. Frenzel, B., Pecsi, M. & Velichko, A. A., 1992

  15. Petrology and geochemistry of Late Holocene felsic magmas from Rungwe volcano (Tanzania), with implications for trachytic Rungwe Pumice eruption dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fontijn, K.; Elburg, M.A.; Nikogosian, I.K.; van Bergen, M.J.; Ernst, G.G.J.


    Rungwe in southern Tanzania is an active volcanic centre in the East African Rift System, characterised by Plinian-style explosive eruptions of metaluminous to slightly peralkaline trachytic silica-undersaturated magmas during its late Holocene history. Variations in whole-rock major and trace

  16. Small Glacier Area Studies: A New Approach for Turkey (United States)

    Yavasli, Dogukan D.; Tucker, Compton J.


    Many regions of Earth have glaciers that have been neglected for study because they are small. We report on a new approach to overcome the problem of studying small glaciers, using Turkey as an example. Prior to our study, no reliable estimates of Turkish glaciers existed because of a lack of systematic mapping, difficulty in using Landsat data collected before 1982, snowpack vs. glacier ice differentiation using existing satellite data and aerial photography, the previous high cost of Landsat images, and a lack of high-resolution imagery of small Turkish glaciers. Since 2008, a large number of area of nine smaller glaciers in Turkey. We also used five Landsat-3 Return Beam Videcon (RBV) 30 m pixel resolution images, all from 1980, for six glaciers. The total area of Turkish glaciers decreased from 23 km2 in the 1970s to 10.1 km2 in 2007-2011. By 2007-2011, six Turkish glaciers disappeared, four were < 0.3 km2, and only three were 1.0 km2 or larger. No trends in precipitation from 1970 to 2006 and cloud cover from 1980 to 2010 were found, while surface temperatures increased, with summer minimum temperatures showing the greatest increase. We conclude that increased surface temperatures during the summer were responsible for the 56% recession of Turkish glaciers from the 1970s to 2006-2011.

  17. Fate of Glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau by 2100 (United States)

    Duan, K.


    As the third polar on the Earth, the Tibetan plateau holds more than 40,000 glaciers which have experienced a rapid retreat in recent decades. The variability of equilibrium line altitude (ELA) indicates expansion and wastage of glacier directly. Here we simulated the ELA variability in the Tibetan Plateau based on a full surface energy and mass balance model. The simulation results are agreement with the observations. The ELAs have risen at a rate of 2-8m/a since 1970 throughout the Plateau, especially in the eastern Plateau where the ELAs have risen to or over the top altitude of glacier, indicating the glaciers are accelerating to melting over there. Two glaciers, XD glacier in the center of the Plateau and Qiyi glacier in the Qilian Mountain, are chosen to simulate its future ELA variability in the scenarios of RCP2.6, RCP4.5 and RCP 8.5 given by IPCC. The results show the ELAs will arrive to its maximum in around 2040 in RCP2.6, while the ELAs will be over the top altitude of glaciers in 2035-2045 in RCP4.5 and RCP8.5, suggesting the glaciers in the eastern Plateau will be melting until the disappear of the glaciers by the end of 2100.

  18. Spatiotemporal variability of Canadian High Arctic glacier surface albedo from MODIS data, 2001-2016 (United States)

    Mortimer, Colleen A.; Sharp, Martin


    Inter-annual variations and longer-term trends in the annual mass balance of glaciers in Canada's Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI) are largely attributable to changes in summer melt. The largest source of melt energy in the QEI in summer is net shortwave radiation, which is modulated by changes in glacier surface albedo. We used measurements from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensors to investigate large-scale spatial patterns, temporal trends, and variability in the summer surface albedo of QEI glaciers from 2001 to 2016. Mean summer black-sky shortwave broadband albedo (BSA) decreased at a rate of 0.029±0.025 decade-1 over that period. Larger reductions in BSA occurred in July (-0.050±0.031 decade-1). No change in BSA was observed in either June or August. Most of the decrease in BSA, which was greatest at lower elevations around the margins of the ice masses, occurred between 2007 and 2012, when mean summer BSA was anomalously low. The first principal component of the 16-year record of mean summer BSA was well correlated with the mean summer North Atlantic Oscillation index, except in 2006, 2010, and 2016, when the mean summer BSA appears to have been dominated by the August BSA. During the period 2001-2016, the mean summer land surface temperature (LST) over the QEI glaciers and ice caps increased by 0.049±0.038 °C yr-1, and the BSA record was negatively correlated (r: -0.86) with the LST record, indicative of a positive ice-albedo feedback that would increase rates of mass loss from the QEI glaciers.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. G. Konovalov


    Full Text Available Rivers with snow-glacier alimentation in six basins of the Northern Caucasus (Cherek, Chegem, Baksan, Malka, Teberda, and upper course of the Terek River and Altai (the Katun’ River were investigated in 1946–2005 for the purpose to analyze long-term streamflow variations. It was noted that in 1976–2005 volume of annual runoff increased relative to the previous 30-year interval in four of six rivers of the Northern Caucasus. During the vegetation period the volume of runoff changed synchronously with the annual one. As for the river Katun’, its volumes and variability of both, the annual runoff and that for the vegetation season, decreased. In the course of investigation of spatial-temporal dynamics of hydrological and glaciological characteristics in the above river basins of the Northern Caucasus and the same of Katun’ River the following problems were considered and solved: a the information and methodological basis for regional calculations of the runoff for the rivers with snow-glacier alimentation had been improved and corrected; b changes of the components of hydrological cycle (precipitation, evaporation, and glacier runoff over the glaciation area had been estimated for the period of 1946–2005; c data on quality of the initial glaciological and hydrological information were integrated; d definitions of the runoff were verified by means of comparison of measured runoff with similar values calculated by equation of the annual water budget as a whole for the basin. It should be noted that the total areas of glaciers and areas of their ablation were significantly reduced, but areas and thicknesses of ice under the moraine cover increased. Despite widespread, sometimes twofold decrease in the relative part of glacier alimentation in the total river streamflow for period of April–September this did make almost no effect on the water supply of the vegetation period in individual basins as well as in the whole the Northern

  20. Using Continuum Damage Mechanics to Simulate Iceberg Calving from Tidewater Outlet Glaciers (United States)

    Mercenier, R.; Lüthi, M.; Vieli, A.


    Many ocean terminating glaciers in the Arctic are currently undergoingrapid retreat, thinning and strong accelerations in flow. The processof iceberg calving plays a crucial role for the related dynamical masslosses and occurs when the stresses at the calving front exceed thefracture strength of ice, driving the propagation of cracks andeventually leading to the detachment of ice blocks from the glacierfront. However, the understanding of the processes involved in icebergcalving as well as the capability of flow models to represent thecalving mechanism remain limited.Here, we use a time-dependent two-dimensional finite-element flowmodel coupled to a damage model to simulate the break-off of ice atthe front of idealized tidewater outlet glaciers. The flow modelcomputes flow velocities and the resulting stresses, which are in turnused to calculate the evolution of the glacier geometry anddamage. Damage is defined as a change of rheological properties, e.g.viscosity, due to increasing material degradation. Elements of ice areremoved when the damage variable reaches a critical threshold. Theeffects of material properties and of geometrical parameters such aswater depth, ice thickness and submarine frontal melting on thesimulated calving rates are explored through systematic sensitivityanalyses.The coupled ice flow/damage model allows for successful reproductionof calving front geometries typically observed for different waterdepths. We further use detailed observations from real glaciergeometries to better constrain the model parameters. Theproposed model approach should be applicable to simulate icebergcalving on arbitrary glaciers, and thus be used to analyse theevolution of tidewater glacier variations from the past to the future.

  1. Models for the runoff from a glacierized catchment area using measurements of environmental isotope contents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Behrens, H.; Moser, H.; Oerter, H.; Rauert, W.; Stichler, W.; Ambach, W.; Kirchlechner, P.


    In the glacierized catchment area of the Rofenache (Oetztal Alps, Austria) during several years measurements have been made of the environmental isotopes 2 H, 18 O and 3 H in the precipitation, in snow and ice samples and in the runoff. Furthermore the electrolytic conductivity of runoff samples was measured and tracing experiments were made with fluorescent dyes. From core samples drilled in the accumulation area of the Vernagtferner, the gross beta activity was investigated and compared with both, the data from 2 H, 3 H und 18 O analyses and the data from mass balance studies. It is shown that the annual net balance from previous years can be recovered on temperate glaciers using environmental isotope techniques. From the diurnal variations of the 2 H and 3 H contents and the electrolytic conductivity the following proportions in the runoff of the Vernagtferner catchment area were obtained during a 24-hour interval at a time of strong ablation (August 1976): about 50% of ice melt water, 25% of direct runoff fo firn- and snow melt water, and 7% of mineralized groundwater. The rest of the runoff consists of not mineralized melt water seeping from the glacier body. The annual variations of the 2 H and 3 H contents in the runoff of the glacierized catchment area permit conclusions on the time sequence of the individual ablation periods and on the residence time on the basis of model concepts. The residence times of approximately 100 days or 4 years, respectively, are obtained from the decrease in the 2 H content at the end of the ablation period and from the variation of the 3 H content in the winter discharge. (orig.) [de

  2. Simulation and reconstruction of parameters of streamflow and glacier mass balance in the Northern Caucasus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. G. Konovalov


    Full Text Available The work was aimed at numerical modeling of spatial-temporal variability of the river Terek seasonal (April to September streamflow characteristics and long-term fluctuations of components of annual glacier mass balances in this basin and on the adjacent territories. Mass balance of glaciers Djankuat and Garabashi was calculated. Simulation was performed by means of stochastic modeling and discrete data presenting fields of main meteorological parameters (precipitation, air temperature and humidity having effect on the streamflow. Realization of this approach is complicated by the fact that spatial representativeness of hydrological and meteorological sites are not corresponding one to another. Data on the runoff is clearly related to the total drainage area closed by a gauging station. And for this data we study a relationship with meteorological parameters which are measured at a non-regular observational network whose spatial representativeness is unknown. These stations are generally located beyond the area under investigation (Fig. 2. Similar problem exists when we analyze a relationship between components of the mass balance of individual glaciers (Djankuat and Garabashi and the above climate characteristics measured at some stations located on the whole Caucasus territory. The same takes place when long-term indices of width and density of tree annual rings obtained in upper reaches of the river Kuban’ are used for analysis of variations of the runoff and the glacier mass balance in the river Terek basin located at a distance of 100-150 km from the Kuban’ dendrologic sites.To solve the problem we used a wide number of factors which directly (various information about the climate or indirectly (indices of the climate dryness, wood ring characteristics characterize conditions of formation of annual and seasonal river runoff and components of glacier mass balance in the North Caucasus. Use of all obtained information made possible the

  3. Mapping surface temperature variability on a debris-covered glacier with an unmanned aerial vehicle (United States)

    Kraaijenbrink, P. D. A.; Litt, M.; Shea, J. M.; Treichler, D.; Koch, I.; Immerzeel, W.


    Debris-covered glacier tongues cover about 12% of the glacier surface in high mountain Asia and much of the melt water is generated from those glaciers. A thin layer of supraglacial debris enhances ice melt by lowering the albedo, while thicker debris insulates the ice and reduces melt. Data on debris thickness is therefore an important input for energy balance modelling of these glaciers. Thermal infrared remote sensing can be used to estimate the debris thickness by using an inverse relation between debris surface temperature and thickness. To date this has only been performed using coarse spaceborne thermal imagery, which cannot reveal small scale variation in debris thickness and its influence on the heterogeneous melt patterns on debris-covered glaciers. We deployed an unmanned aerial vehicle mounted with a thermal infrared sensor over the debris-covered Lirung Glacier in Nepal three times in May 2016 to reveal the spatial and temporal variability of surface temperature in high detail. The UAV survey matched a Landsat 8 overpass to be able to make a comparison with spaceborne thermal imagery. The UAV-acquired data is processed using Structure from Motion photogrammetry and georeferenced using DGPS-measured ground control points. Different surface types were distinguished by using data acquired by an additional optical UAV survey in order to correct for differences in surface emissivity. In situ temperature measurements and incoming solar radiation data are used to calibrate the temperature calculations. Debris thicknesses derived are validated by thickness measurements of a ground penetrating radar. Preliminary analysis reveals a spatially highly heterogeneous pattern of surface temperature over Lirung Glacier with a range in temperature of over 40 K. At dawn the debris is relatively cold and its temperature is influenced strongly by the ice underneath. Exposed to the high solar radiation at the high altitude the debris layer heats up very rapidly as sunrise

  4. Precise Surface Exposure Dating of Early Holocene and Little Ice Age Moraines in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of Southern Peru (United States)

    Licciardi, J. M.; Schaefer, J. M.; Lund, D. C.; Taggart, J. R.


    We have established precise ages of two glacial events in the tropical Andean highlands of southern Peru. The field site is located on the flanks of Nevado Salcantay (6271 m asl; 13°20'S latitude), the highest peak in the Cordillera Vilcabamba. A two-fold sequence of nested lateral and end moraines was mapped in a glacial trough emanating from the south face of Salcantay. Well-defined outer and inner moraines were deposited by valley glaciers that terminated 5 km and 3 km, respectively, from their head on the Salcantay massif. Cosmogenic 10Be surface exposure dating of boulders on the outer (n = 7) and inner (n = 7) moraine crests expands upon initial age control for these deposits and improves substantially on the precision of earlier 10Be measurements. The new results yield mean ages of 9.0 ± 0.3 ka for the outer moraine and 195 ± 24 years for the inner moraine, corresponding to glacial events during the early and latest Holocene. These ages are derived using the CRONUS-Earth 10Be exposure age calculator with Lal-Stone production rate scaling and the default height-pressure relationship. The inner moraine age correlates with the timing of the Little Ice Age as defined from northern mid- and high latitude records, and indicates considerable expansion of glaciers heading on Nevado Salcantay during this climatic minimum. Recent geomorphic mapping has identified similar sequences of moraines in adjacent drainages on and near Salcantay, suggesting a broader regional signal of two prominent Holocene glacial events in this segment of the southern Peruvian Andes; 10Be dating of these additional moraines is underway. Our new glacier chronologies complement ice core and lacustrine paleoclimate records in the vicinity, thereby increasing spatial and temporal coverage for identifying patterns of climate change in the tropical Andes during the Holocene. Apart from their paleoclimatic significance, the results also demonstrate a newly- developed capability of 10Be exposure

  5. The Holocene History of Placentia Bay, Newfoundland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sheldon, Christina; Seidenkrantz, Marit-Solveig; Reynisson, Njall


    Marine sediments analyzed from cores taken in Placentia Bay, Newfoundland, located in the Labrador Sea, captured oceanographic and climatic changes from the end of the Younger Dryas through the Holocene. Placentia Bay is an ideal site to capture changes in both the south-flowing Labrador Current ...

  6. Comparison of Glaciological and Gravimetric Glacier Mass Balance Measurements of Taku and Lemon Creek Glaciers, Southeast Alaska (United States)

    Vogler, K.; McNeil, C.; Bond, M.; Getraer, B.; Huxley-Reicher, B.; McNamara, G.; Reinhardt-Ertman, T.; Silverwood, J.; Kienholz, C.; Beedle, M. J.


    Glacier-wide annual mass balances (Ba) have been calculated for Taku (726 km2) and Lemon Creek glaciers (10.2 km2) since 1946 and 1953 respectively. These are the longest mass balance records in North America, and the only Ba time-series available for Southeast Alaska, making them particularly valuable for the global glacier mass balance monitoring network. We compared Ba time-series from Taku and Lemon Creek glaciers to Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) mascon solutions (1352 and 1353) during the 2004-2015 period to assess how well these gravimetric solutions reflect individual glaciological records. Lemon Creek Glacier is a challenging candidate for this comparison because it is small compared to the 12,100 km2 GRACE mascon solutions. Taku Glacier is equally challenging because its mass balance is stable compared to the negative balances dominating its neighboring glaciers. Challenges notwithstanding, a high correlation between the glaciological and gravimetrically-derived Ba for Taku and Lemon Creek glaciers encourage future use of GRACE to measure glacier mass balance. Additionally, we employed high frequency ground penetrating radar (GPR) to measure the variability of accumulation around glaciological sites to assess uncertainty in our glaciological measurements, and the resulting impact to Ba. Finally, we synthesize this comparison of glaciological and gravimetric mass balance solutions with a discussion of potential sources of error in both methods and their combined utility for measuring regional glacier change during the 21st century.

  7. Instability of seawater pH in the South China Sea during the mid-late Holocene: Evidence from boron isotopic composition of corals (United States)

    Liu, Yajing; Liu, W.; Peng, Z.; Xiao, Y.; Wei, G.; Sun, W.; He, J.; Liu, Gaisheng; Chou, C.-L.


    We used positive thermal ionization mass spectrometry (PTIMS) to generate high precision ??11B records in Porites corals of the mid-late Holocene from the South China Sea (SCS). The ??11B values of the Holocene corals vary significantly, ranging from 22.2??? to 25.5???. The paleo-pH records of the SCS, reconstructed from the ??11B data, were not stable as previously thought but show a gradual increase from the Holocene thermal optimal and a sharp decrease to modern values. The latter is likely caused by the large amount of anthropogenic CO2 emissions since the Industrial Revolution but variations of atmospheric pCO2 cannot explain the pH change of the SCS before the Industrial Revolution. We suggest that variations of monsoon intensity during the mid-late Holocene may have driven the sea surface pH increase from the mid to late Holocene. Results of this study indicate that the impact of anthropogenic atmospheric CO2 emissions may have reversed the natural pH trend in the SCS since the mid-Holocene. Such ocean pH records in the current interglacial period can help us better understand the physical and biological controls on ocean pH and possibly predict the long-term impact of climate change on future ocean acidification. ?? 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Glaciers and ice caps outside Greenland (United States)

    Sharp, Marin; Wolken, G.; Burgess, D.; Cogley, J.G.; Copland, L.; Thomson, L.; Arendt, A.; Wouters, B.; Kohler, J.; Andreassen, L.M.; O'Neel, Shad; Pelto, M.


    Mountain glaciers and ice caps cover an area of over 400 000 km2 in the Arctic, and are a major influence on global sea level (Gardner et al. 2011, 2013; Jacob et al. 2012). They gain mass by snow accumulation and lose mass by meltwater runoff. Where they terminate in water (ocean or lake), they also lose mass by iceberg calving. The climatic mass balance (Bclim, the difference between annual snow accumulation and annual meltwater runoff) is a widely used index of how glaciers respond to climate variability and change. The total mass balance (ΔM) is defined as the difference between annual snow accumulation and annual mass losses (by iceberg calving plus runoff).

  9. On tritium content in the Abramov glacier layers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Voronskaya, G.N.; Nikolishin, I.Ya.; Romanov, V.V.


    Using the common pattern of the analysis of tritium in natural waters its concentration was determined in sampeles of annual layers of the Abramov glacier (Pamir-Altai) at the height of 4500 m above the sea level for 1927-1972. The tritium activity was measured with the help of the liquid scintillation spectrometer with the 10 per cent accuracy. The nature of the obtained curve of the distribution of tritium in the Abramov glacier annual layers was close to its, distribution in glaciers of Greenland, in the Fedchenko glacier and in the precipitation of Teheran. The absolute values of tritium concentrations in the Pamir glaciers are significantly lower than in glaciers of Greenlad. The maximum of tritium concentrations is observed in samples which correspond to 1963, its value approximating to 800 tritium units

  10. An Analysis of Mass Balance of Chilean Glaciers (United States)

    Ambinakudige, S.; Tetteh, L.


    Glaciers in Chile range from very small glacierets found on the isolated volcanoes of northern Chile to the 13,000 Southern Patagonian Ice Field. Regular monitoring of these glaciers is very important as they are considered as sensitive indicators of climate change. Millions of people's lives are dependent on these glaciers for fresh water and irrigation purpose. In this study, mass balances of several Chilean glaciers were estimated using Aster satellite images between 2007 and 2012. Highly accurate DEMs were created with supplementary information from IceSat data. The result indicated a negative mass balance for many glaciers indicating the need for further monitoring of glaciers in the Andes.

  11. Cosmogenic 10Be Dating of Early and Latest Holocene Moraines on Nevado Salcantay in the Southern Peruvian Andes (United States)

    Licciardi, J. M.; Schaefer, J. M.; Lund, D. C.


    A two-fold sequence of nested lateral and end moraines was mapped in a glacial trough emanating from the southwest flank of Nevado Salcantay (6271 m; ~13°S latitude), the highest peak in the Cordillera Vilcabamba of southern Peru. The field area is situated 25 km due south of the archaeological site of Machu Picchu. Outer and inner moraines in the sequence were deposited by valley glaciers that terminated ~5 km and ~3 km, respectively, from their headwall on the Salcantay summit massif. Cosmogenic 10Be surface exposure dating of granitic boulders sampled on the Salcantay moraines is underway and has provided the first numerical ages for these deposits. Initial results indicate ages of 8.1 ± 0.1 10Be ka for the outer moraine and 200 ± 20 10Be years for the sharp-crested inner moraine. These ages are derived using the CRONUS-Earth 10Be exposure age calculator (version 2.0) and expressed with respect to the Lal- Stone production rate scaling scheme using the standard atmosphere. The outer and inner moraine ages correspond to glacial events during the early and latest Holocene, respectively. Further 10Be dating of the mapped moraines and similar deposits observed in adjacent drainages on Nevado Salcantay is anticipated to yield a high-resolution chronology of valley glaciation in this segment of the southern Peruvian Andes. The new results bridge an important gap between existing Andean glacier records to the north and south, and complement available ice core and lacustrine paleoclimate records in the vicinity, thereby expanding spatial and temporal coverage for identifying patterns of Holocene climate change in the tropical Andes. Notably, the inner moraine age correlates with the timing of the Little Ice Age as defined in northern mid- and high latitude glacier records, and suggests considerable expansion of valley glaciers in the southern Peruvian Andes during this climatic minimum. Apart from their paleoclimatic significance, the initial results also demonstrate

  12. Seasonal dynamic thinning at Helheim Glacier

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bevan, Suzanne L.; Luckman, Adrian; Khan, Shfaqat Abbas


    of 671±70kgm-3 and calculate that total water equivalent volume loss from the active part of the glacier (surface flow speeds >1 m day-1) ranges from 0.5 km3 in 2011 to 1.6 km3 in 2013. A rough ice-flux divergence analysis shows that at lower elevations (... the time series, that melt-induced acceleration is most likely the main driver of the seasonal dynamic thinning, as opposed to changes triggered by retreat....

  13. Analysis of Seasonal Variability in Gulf of Alaska Glacier Mass Balance using GRACE (United States)

    Arendt, A. A.; Luthcke, S. B.; Oneel, S.; Gardner, A. S.; Hill, D. F.


    Mass variations of glaciers in Alaska/northwestern Canada must be quantified in order to assess impacts on ecosystems, human infrastructure, and global sea level. Here we combine Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) observations with a wide range of satellite and field data to investigate drivers of these recent changes, with a focus on seasonal variations. Our central focus will be the exceptionally high mass losses of 2009, which do not correlate with weather station temperature and precipitation data, but may be linked to ash fall from the March 31, 2009 eruption of Mt. Redoubt. The eruption resulted in a significant decrease in MODIS-derived surface albedo over many Alaska glacier regions, and likely contributed to some of the 2009 anomalous mass loss observed by GRACE. We also focus on the Juneau and Stikine Icefield regions that are far from the volcanic eruption but experienced the largest mass losses of any region in 2009. Although rapid drawdown of tidewater glaciers was occurring in southeast Alaska during 2009, we show these changes were probably not sufficiently widespread to explain all of the GRACE signal in those regions. We examine additional field and satellite datasets to quantify potential errors in the climate and GRACE fields that could result in the observed discrepancy.

  14. Acceleration of Humboldt glacier, north Greenland (United States)

    Jeong, S.; Howat, I.; Noh, M. J.; King, M. D.


    Here we report on recent abrupt acceleration on the flow speed of Humboldt Glacier (HG) in northern Greenland. The mean annual discharge of this glacier in 2000 was estimated as 8.4Gt/a, placing it among the largest outlet glacier draining the northern coast (Enderlin et al., 2014). Using a combination of remote sensing datasets, we find that following a slight slowing before 2010, HG suddenly sped up by a factor of three between 2012 and 2013, maintaining that increased speed through 2016. Speedup was accompanied by up to 10 m of thinning near the terminus and followed slower, longer-term thinning and retreat. Here we assess possible causes for the speedup, potential for continued acceleration and implication to ice sheet mass balance. ReferenceEnderlin, E. M., I. M. Howat, S. Jeong, M.-J. Noh, J. H. van Angelen, and M. R. van den Broeke (2014), An improved mass budget for the Greenland ice sheet, Geophys. Res. Lett., 41, 866-872, doi:10.1002/2013GL059010.

  15. The retreat of mountain glaciers: what can satellites tell us?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berthier, E.


    Mountain glaciers are one of the best indicators of climate change and their rapid wastage make them a strong contributor to sea level rise. The estimated 160,000 mountain glaciers are spread all around the globe and remain difficult to access. Consequently, only a limited number (about 50 glaciers) are regularly monitored in the field. Today, high resolution satellite optical images are combined to some advanced methodologies to survey their fast and alarming evolution. (author)

  16. Organic carbon accumulation and reactivity in central Swedish lakes during the Holocene (United States)

    Chmiel, H.; Kokic, J.; Niggemann, J.; Dittmar, T.; Sobek, S.


    Sedimentation and burial of particulate organic carbon (POC), received from terrestrial sources and from lake internal primary production, are responsible for the progressive accumulation and long-term storage of organic matter in lake basins. For lakes in the boreal zone of central Sweden it can be presumed, that the onset of POC accumulation occurred during the early Holocene (˜8000 BP.) after the retreat of the Scandinavian ice sheet. In this study we investigated carbon mass accumulation rates (CMARs), as well as sources and reactivity of deposited organic material, for seven lakes in central Sweden (60°N, 15°E), in order to obtain a detailed temporal resolution of carbon burial and preservation in boreal lakes. Sediment long-cores were sampled in March 2011 from the ice, and CMARs were calculated from water contents, dry bulk densities, carbon contents and radiocarbon (14C) ages of the depth profiles. To indicate the sources of the organic material and characterize its diagenetic state, we determined carbon-nitrogen ratios (C/N) as well as amounts and compositions of lignin phenols. The transitions from organic rich sediment layers to glacial till deposits were found to be in sediment depths of ˜3 m in each lake. POC contents were on average highest (25-34 wt. % C), in small lakes (≤ 0.07 km2) and lowest (10-18 wt. % C) in the larger lakes (≥ 165 km2). The CMARs over the Holocene showed significant variations and were on average lower in the early Holocene, compared to recent accumulation rates. C/N values and the composition of lignin phenols further provided indications of important changes in organic matter source and reactivity over the Holocene. In summary, our data suggest that boreal lake sediments were a significantly stronger sink for organic carbon during the last ~150 years than during earlier periods of the Holocene.

  17. Aeolian processes during the Holocene in Gannan Region, Eastern Tibetan Plateau (United States)

    Yang, S.; Cheng, T.; Li, S.; Liang, M.


    Aeolian desertification occurring in the Tibetan Plateau has received attention recently for it has become a severe environmental problem by accelerating the grassland degradation and eco-environment damage. The Gannan Region is located in the northeastern Tibetan Plateau with a mean altitude of 3500m. It is highly sensitive to global environmental change and human disturbance. Serious soil erosion and desertification and extensive land degradation have caused heavy eco-environmental impacts. To investigate the evolution of the desertification in Holocene in the Plateau is of great importance for understanding the desertification trend under the global changes in the Tibetan Plateau. Loess and aeolian sands is a key geological archive related to desertification processes and the past environment changes. In this study a typical 8.5m-thick loess-sands profile named MQQ, was selected at the Maqu city. It is situated on the first terrace (T1) of the Yellow River. Detailed accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) 14C dating of bulk organic matter content has shown the Aeolian sediments of the MQQ section occurring since the early Holocene. the mass-specific frequency-dependent magnetic susceptibility (χfd) and grainsize records show a clear upward increase in the contents of superparamagnetic grains and fine fractions in grain size, which indicates a gradual wetting trend during the Holocene.The sediment rates change from very high in the early Holocene to low values after 8.2 ka. The wetting process can be divided into three steps: 10.0-8.2 ka, 8.2-3.0 ka and 3.0-present. It indicates that the climate in the eastern Tibetan Plateau was dry during the early Holocene. After that the climate was getting wet gradually. The variations of the westerlies and the Asian monsoon may cause the environmental change in this region.

  18. Global-scale hydrological response to future glacier mass loss (United States)

    Huss, Matthias; Hock, Regine


    Worldwide glacier retreat and associated future runoff changes raise major concerns over the sustainability of global water resources1-4, but global-scale assessments of glacier decline and the resulting hydrological consequences are scarce5,6. Here we compute global glacier runoff changes for 56 large-scale glacierized drainage basins to 2100 and analyse the glacial impact on streamflow. In roughly half of the investigated basins, the modelled annual glacier runoff continues to rise until a maximum (`peak water') is reached, beyond which runoff steadily declines. In the remaining basins, this tipping point has already been passed. Peak water occurs later in basins with larger glaciers and higher ice-cover fractions. Typically, future glacier runoff increases in early summer but decreases in late summer. Although most of the 56 basins have less than 2% ice coverage, by 2100 one-third of them might experience runoff decreases greater than 10% due to glacier mass loss in at least one month of the melt season, with the largest reductions in central Asia and the Andes. We conclude that, even in large-scale basins with minimal ice-cover fraction, the downstream hydrological effects of continued glacier wastage can be substantial, but the magnitudes vary greatly among basins and throughout the melt season.

  19. Improving estimation of glacier volume change: a GLIMS case study of Bering Glacier System, Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. J. Beedle


    Full Text Available The Global Land Ice Measurements from Space (GLIMS project has developed tools and methods that can be employed by analysts to create accurate glacier outlines. To illustrate the importance of accurate glacier outlines and the effectiveness of GLIMS standards we conducted a case study on Bering Glacier System (BGS, Alaska. BGS is a complex glacier system aggregated from multiple drainage basins, numerous tributaries, and many accumulation areas. Published measurements of BGS surface area vary from 1740 to 6200 km2, depending on how the boundaries of this system have been defined. Utilizing GLIMS tools and standards we have completed a new outline (3630 km2 and analysis of the area-altitude distribution (hypsometry of BGS using Landsat images from 2000 and 2001 and a US Geological Survey 15-min digital elevation model. We compared this new hypsometry with three different hypsometries to illustrate the errors that result from the widely varying estimates of BGS extent. The use of different BGS hypsometries results in highly variable measures of volume change and net balance (bn. Applying a simple hypsometry-dependent mass-balance model to different hypsometries results in a bn rate range of −1.0 to −3.1 m a−1 water equivalent (W.E., a volume change range of −3.8 to −6.7 km3 a−1 W.E., and a near doubling in contributions to sea level equivalent, 0.011 mm a−1 to 0.019 mm a−1. Current inaccuracies in glacier outlines hinder our ability to correctly quantify glacier change. Understanding of glacier extents can become comprehensive and accurate. Such accuracy is possible with the increasing volume of satellite imagery of glacierized regions, recent advances in tools and standards, and dedication to this important task.

  20. Structure and changing dynamics of a polythermal valley glacier on a centennial timescale - Midre Lovenbreen, Svalbard

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hambrey, M. J.; Murray, T.; Glasser, N. F.


    structural glaciology, polythermal glacier, Svalbard, ground-penetrating radar, numerical modeling......structural glaciology, polythermal glacier, Svalbard, ground-penetrating radar, numerical modeling...

  1. Monitoring population status of sea otters (Enhydra lutris) in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska: options and considerations (United States)

    Esslinger, George G.; Esler, Daniel N.; Howlin, S.; Starcevich, L.A.


    After many decades of absence from southeast Alaska, sea otters (Enhydra lutris) are recolonizing parts of their former range, including Glacier Bay, Alaska. Sea otters are well known for structuring nearshore ecosystems and causing community-level changes such as increases in kelp abundance and changes in the size and number of other consumers. Monitoring population status of sea otters in Glacier Bay will help park researchers and managers understand and interpret sea otter-induced ecosystem changes relative to other sources of variation, including potential human-induced impacts such as ocean acidification, vessel disturbance, and oil spills. This report was prepared for the National Park Service (NPS), Southeast Alaska Inventory and Monitoring Network following a request for evaluation of options for monitoring sea otter population status in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. To meet this request, we provide a detailed consideration of the primary method of assessment of abundance and distribution, aerial surveys, including analyses of power to detect interannual trends and designs to reduce variation around annual abundance estimates. We also describe two alternate techniques for evaluating sea otter population status—(1) quantifying sea otter diets and energy intake rates, and (2) detecting change in ages at death. In addition, we provide a brief section on directed research to identify studies that would further our understanding of sea otter population dynamics and effects on the Glacier Bay ecosystem, and provide context for interpreting results of monitoring activities.

  2. A Late Glacial to Holocene record of environmental change from Lake Dojran (Macedonia, Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Francke


    Full Text Available A Late Glacial to Holocene sediment sequence (Co1260, 717 cm from Lake Dojran, located at the boarder of the F.Y.R. of Macedonia and Greece, has been investigated to provide information on climate variability in the Balkan region. A robust age-model was established from 13 radiocarbon ages, and indicates that the base of the sequence was deposited at ca. 12 500 cal yr BP, when the lake-level was low. Variations in sedimentological (H2O, TOC, CaCO3, TS, TOC/TN, TOC/TS, grain-size, XRF, δ18Ocarb, δ13Ccarb, δ13Corg data were linked to hydro-acoustic data and indicate that warmer and more humid climate conditions characterised the remaining period of the Younger Dryas until the beginning of the Holocene. The Holocene exhibits significant environmental variations, including the 8.2 and 4.2 ka cooling events, the Medieval Warm Period and the Little Ice Age. Human induced erosion processes in the catchment of Lake Dojran intensified after 2800 cal yr BP.

  3. Numerical Modeling of Climatic Change from the Terminus Record of Lewis Glacier, Mount Kenya. (United States)

    Kruss, Phillip Donald

    Over the last 100 years, the glaciers and lakes of East Africa have undergone dramatic change in response to climatic forcing. However, the available conventional meterological series have not proven sufficient to explain these environmental events. The secular climatic change at Lewis Glacier, Mount Kenya (0(DEGREES)9'S, 37(DEGREES)19'E), is reconstructed from its terminus record documented since 1893. The short-time-step numerical model developed for this study consists of climate and ice dynamics segments. The climate segment directly computes the effect on the net balance of change in the four forcings: precipitation, albedo, cloudiness, and temperature. The flow segment calculates the dynamic glacier response to net balance variation. Climatic change occurs over a wide range of time scales. Each glacier responds in a unique fashion to this spectrum of climatic forcings. The response of the Lewis terminus extent to repeated sinusoidal fluctuation in the net balance is calculated. The net balance versus elevation profile is separately translated along the orthogonal balance and elevation axes. Net balance amplitudes of 0.1 to 0.5 m a('-1) of ice and 10 to 50 m elevation, respectively, and periods ranging from 20 to 1000 years are covered. Consideration of the Lewis response is perspective with similar results for Hintereisferner, Storglaciaren, and Berendon and South Cascade Glaciers identifies general characteristics of the time lag and amplitude of the terminus response. The magnitude and timing of the change in only one of the climatic forcings precipitation, albedo, cloudiness, or temperature necessary to produce the retreat of the Lewis terminus from its late 19th century maximum are computed. Equivalent changes for two scenarios of simultaneous variation, namely precipitation/albedo/cloudiness and temperature/albedo, are also estimated. These numerical results are interpreted in the light of long-term lake level, river flow, and instrumental information. A

  4. Present dynamics and future prognosis of a slowly surging glacier

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. E. Flowers


    Full Text Available Glacier surges are a well-known example of an internal dynamic oscillation whose occurrence is not a direct response to the external climate forcing, but whose character (i.e. period, amplitude, mechanism may depend on the glacier's environmental or climate setting. We examine the dynamics of a small (∼5 km2 valley glacier in Yukon, Canada, where two previous surges have been photographically documented and an unusually slow surge is currently underway. To characterize the dynamics of the present surge, and to speculate on the future of this glacier, we employ a higher-order flowband model of ice dynamics with a regularized Coulomb-friction sliding law in both diagnostic and prognostic simulations. Diagnostic (force balance calculations capture the measured ice-surface velocity profile only when non-zero basal water pressures are prescribed over the central region of the glacier, coincident with where evidence of the surge has been identified. This leads to sliding accounting for 50–100% of the total surface motion in this region. Prognostic simulations, where the glacier geometry evolves in response to a prescribed surface mass balance, reveal a significant role played by a bedrock ridge beneath the current equilibrium line of the glacier. Ice thickening occurs above the ridge in our simulations, until the net mass balance reaches sufficiently negative values. We suggest that the bedrock ridge may contribute to the propensity for surges in this glacier by promoting the development of the reservoir area during quiescence, and may permit surges to occur under more negative balance conditions than would otherwise be possible. Collectively, these results corroborate our interpretation of the current glacier flow regime as indicative of a slow surge that has been ongoing for some time, and support a relationship between surge incidence or character and the net mass balance. Our results also highlight the importance of glacier bed

  5. Climate Change and Glacier Retreat: Scientific Fact and Artistic Opportunity (United States)

    Fagre, D. B.


    Mountain glaciers continue to retreat rapidly over most of the globe. In North America, at Glacier National Park, Montana, recent research results from Sperry Glacier (2005-2007) indicate negative mass balances are now 3-4 times greater than in the 1950s. A geospatial model of glacier retreat in the Blackfoot-Jackson basin suggested all glaciers would be gone by 2030 but has proved too conservative. Accelerated glacier shrinkage since the model was developed has mirrored an increase in actual annual temperature that is almost twice the rate used in the model. The glaciers in Glacier National Park are likely to be gone well before 2030. A variety of media, curricula, and educational strategies have been employed to communicate the disappearance of the glaciers as a consequence of global warming. These have included everything from print media and television coverage to podcasts and wayside exhibits along roads in the park. However, a new thrust is to partner with artists to communicate climate change issues to new audiences and through different channels. A scientist-artist retreat was convened to explore the tension between keeping artistic products grounded in factually-based reality while providing for freedom to express artistic creativity. Individual artists and scientists have worked to create aesthetic and emotional images, using painting, poetry, music and photography, to convey core messages from research on mountain ecosystems. Finally, a traveling art exhibit was developed to highlight the photography that systematically documents glacier change through time. The aim was to select photographs that provide the most compelling visual experience for an art-oriented viewer and also accurately reflect the research on glacier retreat. The exhibit opens on January 11, 2009

  6. Tracking seasonal subglacial drainage evolution of alpine glaciers using radiogenic Nd and Sr isotope systematics: Lemon Creek Glacier, Alaska (United States)

    Clinger, A. E.; Aciego, S.; Stevenson, E. I.; Arendt, C. A.


    The transport pathways of water beneath a glacier are subject to change as melt seasons progress due to variability in the balance between basal water pressure and water flux. Subglacial hydrology has been well studied, but the understanding of spatial distribution is less well constrained. Whereas radiogenic isotopic tracers have been traditionally used as proxies to track spatial variability and weathering rates in fluvial and riverine systems, these techniques have yet to be applied extensively to the subglacial environment and may help resolve ambiguity in subglacial hydrology. Research has shown the 143Nd/144Nd values can reflect variation in source provenance processes due to variations in the age of the continental crust. Correlating the 143Nd/144Nd with other radiogenic isotope systematics such as strontium (87Sr/86Sr) provides important constraints on the role of congruent and incongruent weathering processes. Our study presents the application of Nd and Sr systematics using isotopic ratios to the suspended load of subglacial meltwater collected over a single melt season at Lemon Creek Glacier, USA (LCG). The time-series data show an average ɛNd ~ -6.83, indicating a young bedrock (~60 MYA). Isotopic variation helps track the seasonal expansion of the subglacial meltwater channels and subsequent return to early season conditions due to the parabolic trend towards less radiogenic Nd in June and towards more radiogenic Nd beginning in mid-August. However, the high variability in July and early August may reflect a mixture of source as the channels diverge and derive sediment from differently aged lithologies. We find a poor correlation between 143Nd/144Nd and 87Sr/86Sr (R2= 0.38) along with a slight trend towards more radiogenic 87Sr/86Sr values with time ((R2= 0.49). This may indicate that, even as the residence time decreases over the melt season, the LCG subglacial system is relatively stable and that the bedrock is congruently weathered. Our study

  7. Sediment Buffering and Transport in the Holocene Indus River System (United States)

    Clift, P. D.; Giosan, L.; Henstock, T.; Tabrez, A. R.; Vanlaningham, S.; Alizai, A. H.; Limmer, D. R.; Danish, M.


    Submarine fans are the largest sediment bodies on Earth and potentially hold records of erosion that could be used to assess the response of continents to changing climate in terms of both physical erosion and chemical weathering. However, buffering between the mountain sources and the abyssal plain may make detailed correlation of climate and erosion records difficult. We investigated the nature of sediment transport in the Indus drainage in SW Asia. Through trenching in the flood plain, drilling in the delta and new seismic and coring data from the shelf and canyon we can now constrain sediment transport from source to sink since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The Indus was affected by intensification of the summer monsoon during the Early Holocene and subsequent weakening since ca. 8 ka. Sediment delivery to the delta was very rapid at 12-8 ka, but slowed along with the weakening monsoon. At the LGM erosion in the Karakoram dominated the supply of sandy material, while the proportion of Lesser Himalayan flux increased with strengthening summer rainfall after 12 ka. Total load also increased at that time. Since 5 ka incision of rivers into the upper parts of the flood plain has reworked Lower Holocene sediments, although the total flux slowed. Coring in the Indus canyon shows that sediment has not reached the lower canyon since ca. 7 ka, but that sedimentation has recently been very rapid in the head of the canyon. We conclude that variations in sealevel and terrestrial climate have introduced a lag of at least 7 k.y. into the deep sea fan record and that monsoon strength is a primary control on whether sediment is stored or released in the flood plain.

  8. An Analytical Model for Basin-scale Glacier Erosion as a Function of Climate and Topography (United States)

    Jaffrey, M.; Hallet, B.


    Knowledge about glacier erosion has advanced considerably over the last few decades with the emergence of a firm mechanistic understanding of abrasion and quarrying, the growing sophistication of complex numerical models of glacial erosion and the evolution of glacial landforms, and the increase in data from field studies of erosion rates. Interest in glacial erosion has also intensified and diversified substantially as it is increasingly recognized as a key process affecting the heights of mountains, the overall evolution of mountain belts, and the coupling of climate, erosion, and tectonics. Yet, the general controls of glacier erosion rates have not been addressed theoretically, and the large range of published basin-scale erosion rates, covering more than 3 orders of magnitude, remains poorly understood. To help gain insight into glacier erosion rates at the scale of glacier basins, the only scale for which extensive data exist, we develop analytically a simple budget of the total mechanical energy per unit time, the power, dissipated by a steady state glacier in sliding, S, and viscous deformation, V. We hypothesize that the power for the work of erosion derives solely from S and that the basin wide erosion rate scales with S averaged over the basin. We solve the power budget directly in terms of climatic and topographic parameters, showing explicitly that the source of power to drive both S and V is the gravitational power supplied by the net snow accumulation (mass balance). The budget leads to the simple metric φ=mbΔz2 for the basin average of S with Δz being the glacier basin relief and mb the gradient of the mass balance with elevation. The dependence of φ on the square of the relief arises from both the mass balance's and potential energy's linear increases with elevation. We validate φ using results from a comprehensive field study of erosion rates paired with glaciological data along a transect extending from Southern Patagonia to the Antarctic

  9. Dissolved organic carbon fractionation accelerates glacier-melting: A case study in the northern Tibetan Plateau. (United States)

    Hu, Zhaofu; Kang, Shichang; Yan, Fangping; Zhang, Yulan; Li, Yang; Chen, Pengfei; Qin, Xiang; Wang, Kun; Gao, Shaopeng; Li, Chaoliu


    In glacierized regions, melting process has a significant effect on concentrations and light absorption characteristics of dissolved organic carbon (DOC), potentially resulting in variations of its radiative forcing, which is not yet relevant research at glacier region of the Tibetan Plateau (TP). In this study, DOC fractionation and its radiative forcing change during the melting process were investigated at Laohugou glacier No. 12 (LHG glacier) in western Qilian Mts., northern TP. DOC concentrations in fresh snow, snowpit and surface ice samples were 0.38 ± 0.06, 0.22 ± 0.11 and 0.60 ± 0.21 mg L -1 , respectively. Their mass absorption cross-section at 365 nm (MAC 365 ) were 0.65 ± 0.16, 4.71 ± 3.68 and 1.44 ± 0.52 m 2  g -1 , respectively. The MAC 365 values of snowpit samples showed a significant negative correlation with DOC concentrations, indicating DOC with high MAC 365 values were likely to be kept in snow during the melting process. Topsoil samples of LHG glacierized region likely contributed a lot to snowpit DOC with high MAC 365 values due to their similar absorption spectra. Spatially, the DOC concentration of surface ice samples increased from terminus to the upper part of the glacier. Correspondingly, the MAC 365 value showed decreased trend. In the freezing experiment on surface ice and topsoil samples, small part of DOC with high MAC 365 value was also likely to enter first frozen solid phase. In addition, the radiative forcing caused by snowpit and surface ice DOC increased around 7.64 ± 2.93 and 4.95 ± 1.19 times relative to fresh snow DOC, indicating the snow/ice melting caused by increased light-absorbing DOC needs to be considered in the future research. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. Tracer-based identification of rock glacier thawing in a glacierized Alpine catchment (United States)

    Engel, Michael; Penna, Daniele; Tirler, Werner; Comiti, Francesco


    Current warming in high mountains leads to increased melting of snow, glacier ice and permafrost. In particular rock glaciers, as a creeping form of mountain permafrost, may release contaminants such as heavy metals into the stream during intense melting periods in summer. This may have strong impacts on both water quantity and quality of fresh water resources but might also harm the aquatic fauna in mountain regions. In this context, the present study used stable isotopes of water and electrical conductivity (EC) combined with trace, major and minor elements to identify the influence of permafrost thawing on the water quality in the glacierized Solda catchment (130 km2) in South Tyrol (Italy). We carried out a monthly sampling of two springs fed by an active rock glacier at about 2600 m a.s.l. from July to October 2015. Furthermore, we took monthly water samples from different stream sections of the Solda River (1110 to m a.s.l.) from March to November 2015. Meteorological data were measured by an Automatic Weather Station at 2825 m a.s.l. of the Hydrographic Office (Autonomous Province of Bozen-Bolzano). First results show that water from the rock glacier springs and stream water fell along the global meteoric water line. Spring water was slightly more variable in isotopic ratio (δ2H: -91 to - 105 ) and less variable in dissolved solutes (EC: 380 to 611 μS/cm) than stream water (δ2H: -96 to - 107 ‰ and EC: 212 to 927 μS/cm). Both spring water and stream water showed a pronounced drop in EC during July and August, very likely induced by increased melt water dilution. In both water types, element concentrations of Ca and Mg were highest (up to 160 and 20 mg/l, respectively). In September, spring water showed higher concentrations in Cu, As, and Pb than stream water, indicating that these elements partly exceeded the concentration limit for drinking water. These observations highlight the important control, which rock glacier thawing may have on water quality


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Mohamadi


    Full Text Available Glaciers are retreating in many parts of the world as a result of global warming. Many researchers consider Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau as a reference for climate change by measuring glaciers retreat on the plateau. This retreat resulted in some topographic changes in retreated areas, and in some cases can lead to geohazards as landslides, and rock avalanches, which is known in glacier retreated areas as paraglacial slope failure (PSF. In this study, Geladandong biggest and main glacier mass was selected to estimate surface deformation on its glacier retreated areas and define potential future PSF based on PS-InSAR technique. 56 ascending and 49 descending images were used to fulfill this aim. Geladandong glacier retreated areas were defined based on the maximum extent of the glacier in the little ice age. Results revealed a general uplift in the glacier retreated areas with velocity less than 5mm/year. Obvious surface motion was revealed in seven parts surround glacier retreated areas with high relative velocity reached ±60mm/year in some parts. Four parts were considered as PSF potential motion, and two of them showed potential damage for the main road in the study area in case of rock avalanche into recent glacier lakes that could result in glacier lake outburst flooding heading directly to the road. Finally, further analysis and field investigations are needed to define the main reasons for different types of deformation and estimate future risks of these types of surface motion in the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau.

  12. Tidal bending of glaciers: a linear viscoelastic approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Reeh, Niels; Christensen, Erik Lintz; Mayer, Christoph


    In theoretical treatments of tidal bending of floating glaciers, the glacier is usually modelled as an elastic beam with uniform thickness, resting on an elastic foundation. With a few exceptions, values of the elastic (Young's) modulus E of ice derived from tidal deflection records of floating...

  13. A glacier runoff extension to the Precipitation Runoff Modeling System (United States)

    A. E. Van Beusekom; R. J. Viger


    A module to simulate glacier runoff, PRMSglacier, was added to PRMS (Precipitation Runoff Modeling System), a distributed-parameter, physical-process hydrological simulation code. The extension does not require extensive on-glacier measurements or computational expense but still relies on physical principles over empirical relations as much as is feasible while...

  14. Irreversible mass loss of Canadian Arctic Archipelago glaciers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lenaerts, J.T.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/314850163; van Angelen, J.H.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/325922470; van den Broeke, M.R.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073765643; Gardner, A.S.; Wouters, Bert|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304120146; van Meijgaard, E.


    The Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) contains the largest volume of glacier ice on Earth outside of Antarctica and Greenland. In the absence of significant calving, CAA glacier mass balance is governed by the difference between surface snow accumulation and meltwater runoff—surface mass balance.

  15. Debris thickness patterns on debris-covered glaciers (United States)

    Anderson, Leif S.; Anderson, Robert S.


    Many debris-covered glaciers have broadly similar debris thickness patterns: surface debris thickens and tends to transition from convex- to concave-up-down glacier. We explain this pattern using theory (analytical and numerical models) paired with empirical observations. Down glacier debris thickening results from the conveyor-belt-like nature of the glacier surface in the ablation zone (debris can typically only be added but not removed) and from the inevitable decline in ice surface velocity toward the terminus. Down-glacier thickening of debris leads to the reduction of sub-debris melt and debris emergence toward the terminus. Convex-up debris thickness patterns occur near the up-glacier end of debris covers where debris emergence dominates (ablation controlled). Concave-up debris thickness patterns occur toward glacier termini where declining surface velocities dominate (velocity controlled). A convex-concave debris thickness profile inevitably results from the transition between ablation-control and velocity-control down-glacier. Debris thickness patterns deviating from this longitudinal shape are most likely caused by changes in hillslope debris supply through time. By establishing this expected debris thickness pattern, the effects of climate change on debris cover can be better identified.

  16. Velocities of antarctic outlet glaciers determined from sequential Landsat images (United States)

    MacDonald, Thomas R.; Ferrigno, Jane G.; Williams, Richard S.; Lucchitta, Baerbel K.


    Approximately 91.0 percent of the volume of present-day glacier ice on Earth is in Antarctica; Greenland contains about another 8.3 percent of the volume. Thus, together, these two great ice sheets account for an estimated 99.3 percent of the total. Long-term changes in the volume of glacier ice on our planet are the result of global climate change. Because of the relationship of global ice volume to sea level (± 330 cubic kilometers of glacier ice equals ± 1 millimeter sea level), changes in the mass balance of the antarctic ice sheet are of particular importance.Whether the mass balance of the east and west antarctic ice sheets is positive or negative is not known. Estimates of mass input by total annual precipitation for the continent have been made from scattered meteorological observations (Swithinbank 1985). The magnitude of annual ablation of the ice sheet from calving of outlet glaciers and ice shelves is also not well known. Although the velocities of outlet glaciers can be determined from field measurements during the austral summer,the technique is costly, does not cover a complete annual cycle,and has been applied to just a few glaciers. To increase the number of outlet glaciers in Antarctica for which velocities have been determined and to provide additional data for under-standing the dynamics of the antarctic ice sheets and their response to global climate change, sequential Landsat image of several outlet glaciers were measured.

  17. Impact of Earth's orbit and freshwater fluxes on Holocene climate mean seasonal cycle and ENSO characteristics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braconnot, P.; Zheng, W. [unite mixte CEA-CNRS-UVSQ, Laboratoire des Sciences du climat et de l' Environnement, Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex (France); Luan, Y. [unite mixte CEA-CNRS-UVSQ, Laboratoire des Sciences du climat et de l' Environnement, Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex (France); Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), State Key Laboratory of Numerical Modeling for Atmospheric Sciences and Geophysical Fluid Dynamics (LASG), Institute of Atmospheric Physics (IAP), Beijing (China); Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing (China); Brewer, Simon [University of Wyoming, Department of Botany, Laramie, WY (United States)


    We use a state-of-the-art 3-dimensional coupled model to investigate the relative impact of long term variations in the Holocene insolation forcing and of a freshwater release in the North Atlantic. We show that insolation has a greater effect on seasonality and La Nina events and is the major driver of sea surface temperature changes. In contrast, the variations in precipitation reflect changes in El Nino events. The impact of ice-sheet melting may have offset the impact of insolation on El Nino Southern Oscillation variability at the beginning of the Holocene. These simulations provide a coherent framework to refine the interpretation of proxy data and show that changes in seasonality may bias the projection of relationships established between proxy indicators and climate variations in the east Pacific from present day records. (orig.)

  18. Climate variability during the deglaciation and Holocene in a high-altitude alpine lake deduced from the sedimentary record from Laguna Seca, Sierra Nevada, southern Iberian Peninsula (United States)

    Camuera, Jon; Jiménez-Moreno, Gonzalo; José Ramos-Román, María; García-Alix, Antonio; Jiménez-Espejo, Francisco; Anderson, R. Scott


    High-resolution X-ray fluorescence (XRF), magnetic susceptibility (MS), color and lithological analyses have been carried out on a 3.6 m-long sediment core from Laguna Seca, a high-elevation dry lake from Sierra Nevada mountain range, southern Spain. This is the longest sedimentary record retrieved from an alpine lake in southern Iberian Peninsula. Besides, alpine lakes are very sensitive environments to climate changes and previous studies showed that Laguna Seca could provide an excellent record to identify millennial-scale climate variations during deglaciation and the whole Holocene. XRF analyses, in particular high calcium and low K/Ca ratios, show aridity phases, very well represented during Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and the Younger Dryas (YD). Arid events are also shown at ca. 8.1 ka BP, ca. 4.4 ka BP and the latest Holocene. On the other hand, negative values in calcium and positive values in K/Ca appear in the Bølling-Allerød (BA) and during the early Holocene until ca. 6 ka BP, indicating more humidity and higher run-off. A progressive aridification trend is also observed in the Holocene, changing from more humid conditions during the early Holocene to more aridity during the late Holocene.

  19. Extensive Holocene ice sheet grounding line retreat and uplift-driven readvance in West Antarctica (United States)

    Kingslake, J.; Scherer, R. P.; Albrecht, T.; Coenen, J. J.; Powell, R. D.; Reese, R.; Stansell, N.; Tulaczyk, S. M.; Whitehouse, P. L.


    The West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) reached its Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) extent 29-14 kyr before present. Numerical models used to project future ice-sheet contributions to sea-level rise exploit reconstructions of post-LGM ice mass loss to tune model parameterizations. Ice-sheet reconstructions are poorly constrained in areas where floating ice shelves or a lack of exposed geology obstruct conventional glacial-geological techniques. In the Weddell and Ross Sea sectors, ice-sheet reconstructions have traditionally assumed progressive grounding line (GL) retreat throughout the Holocene. Contrasting this view, using three distinct lines of evidence, we show that the GL retreated hundreds of kilometers inland of its present position, before glacial isostatic rebound during the Mid to Late Holocene caused the GL to readvance to its current position. Evidence for retreat and readvance during the last glacial termination includes (1) widespread radiocarbon in sediment cores recovered from beneath ice streams along the Siple and Gould Coasts, indicating marine exposure at least 200 km inland of the current GL, (2) ice-penetrating radar observations of relic crevasses and other englacial structures preserved in slow-moving grounded ice, indicating ice-shelf grounding and (3) an ensemble of new ice-sheet simulations showing widespread post-LGM retreat of the GL inland of its current location and later readvance. The model indicates that GL readvance across low slope ice-stream troughs requires uplift-driven grounding of the ice shelf on topographic highs (ice rises). Our findings highlight ice-shelf pinning points and lithospheric response to unloading as drivers of major ice-sheet fluctuations. Full WAIS collapse likely requires GL retreat well beyond its current position in the Ronne and Ross Sectors and linkage via Amundsen Sea sector glaciers.

  20. Stable oxygen isotope variability in two contrasting glacier river catchments in Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yde, Jacob C.; Knudsen, Niels T.; Steffensen, Jørgen P.


    the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS). At the Mittivakkat Gletscher river, a small river draining a local temperate glacier in southeast Greenland, diurnal oscillations in δ18O occurred with a 3 h time lag to the diurnal oscillations in run-off. The mean annual δ18O was -14.68±0.18‰ during the peak flow period...... event. Overall, a comparison of the δ18O compositions from glacial river water in Greenland shows distinct differences between water draining local glaciers and ice caps (between -23.0 and -13.7 ‰) and the GrIS (between -29.9 and -23.2 ‰). This study demonstrates that water isotope analyses can be used......Analysis of stable oxygen isotope (δ18O) characteristics is a useful tool to investigate water provenance in glacier river systems. In order to attain knowledge on the diversity of δ18O variations in Greenlandic rivers, we examined two contrasting glacierised catchments disconnected from...

  1. Hydrological Modeling of Highly Glacierized Basins (Andes, Alps, and Central Asia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Omani


    Full Text Available The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT was used to simulate five glacierized river basins that are global in coverage and vary in climate. The river basins included the Narayani (Nepal, Vakhsh (Central Asia, Rhone (Switzerland, Mendoza (Central Andes, Argentina, and Central Dry Andes (Chile, with a total area of 85,000 km2. A modified SWAT snow algorithm was applied in order to consider spatial variation of associated snowmelt/accumulation by elevation band across each subbasin. In previous studies, melt rates varied as a function of elevation because of an air temperature gradient while the snow parameters were constant throughout the entire basin. A major improvement of the new snow algorithm is the separation of the glaciers from seasonal snow based on their characteristics. Two SWAT snow algorithms were evaluated in simulation of monthly runoff from the glaciered watersheds: (1 the snow parameters are lumped (constant throughout the entire basin and (2 the snow parameters are spatially variable based on elevation bands of a subbasin (modified snow algorithm. Applying the distributed SWAT snow algorithm improved the model performance in simulation of monthly runoff with snow-glacial regime, so that mean RSR decreased to 0.49 from 0.55 and NSE increased to 0.75 from 0.69. Improvement of model performance was negligible in simulations of monthly runoff from the basins with a monsoon runoff regime.

  2. Chemical Records in Snowpits from High Altitude Glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and Its Surroundings (United States)

    Zhang, Yulan; Kang, Shichang; Zhang, Qianggong; Gao, Tanguang; Guo, Junming; Grigholm, Bjorn; Huang, Jie; Sillanpää, Mika; Li, Xiaofei; Du, Wentao; Li, Yang; Ge, Xinlei


    Glaciochemistry can provide important information about climatic change and environmental conditions, as well as for testing regional and global atmospheric trace transport models. In this study, δ18O and selected chemical constituents records in snowpits collected from eight glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and adjacent areas have been investigated. Drawing on the integrated data, our study summarized the seasonal and spatial characteristics of snow chemistry, and their potential sources. Distinct seasonal patterns of δ18O values in snowpits indicated more negative in the south TP controlled by Indian monsoon, and less negative in the north TP and Tien Shan. Overall increasing concentrations of microparticles and crustal ions from south to north indicated a strength of dust deposition on glaciers from semi-arid and arid regions. Principal component analysis and air mass trajectories suggested that chemical constituents were mainly attributable to crustal sources as demonstrated by the high concentrations of ions occurring during the non-monsoon seasons. Nevertheless, other sources, such as anthropogenic pollution, played an important role on chemical variations of glaciers near the human activity centers. This study concluded that air mass transport from different sources played important roles on the spatial distributions and seasonality of glaciochemistry. PMID:27186638

  3. Chemical Records in Snowpits from High Altitude Glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and Its Surroundings.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yulan Zhang

    Full Text Available Glaciochemistry can provide important information about climatic change and environmental conditions, as well as for testing regional and global atmospheric trace transport models. In this study, δ18O and selected chemical constituents records in snowpits collected from eight glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and adjacent areas have been investigated. Drawing on the integrated data, our study summarized the seasonal and spatial characteristics of snow chemistry, and their potential sources. Distinct seasonal patterns of δ18O values in snowpits indicated more negative in the south TP controlled by Indian monsoon, and less negative in the north TP and Tien Shan. Overall increasing concentrations of microparticles and crustal ions from south to north indicated a strength of dust deposition on glaciers from semi-arid and arid regions. Principal component analysis and air mass trajectories suggested that chemical constituents were mainly attributable to crustal sources as demonstrated by the high concentrations of ions occurring during the non-monsoon seasons. Nevertheless, other sources, such as anthropogenic pollution, played an important role on chemical variations of glaciers near the human activity centers. This study concluded that air mass transport from different sources played important roles on the spatial distributions and seasonality of glaciochemistry.

  4. Chemical Records in Snowpits from High Altitude Glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and Its Surroundings. (United States)

    Zhang, Yulan; Kang, Shichang; Zhang, Qianggong; Gao, Tanguang; Guo, Junming; Grigholm, Bjorn; Huang, Jie; Sillanpää, Mika; Li, Xiaofei; Du, Wentao; Li, Yang; Ge, Xinlei


    Glaciochemistry can provide important information about climatic change and environmental conditions, as well as for testing regional and global atmospheric trace transport models. In this study, δ18O and selected chemical constituents records in snowpits collected from eight glaciers in the Tibetan Plateau and adjacent areas have been investigated. Drawing on the integrated data, our study summarized the seasonal and spatial characteristics of snow chemistry, and their potential sources. Distinct seasonal patterns of δ18O values in snowpits indicated more negative in the south TP controlled by Indian monsoon, and less negative in the north TP and Tien Shan. Overall increasing concentrations of microparticles and crustal ions from south to north indicated a strength of dust deposition on glaciers from semi-arid and arid regions. Principal component analysis and air mass trajectories suggested that chemical constituents were mainly attributable to crustal sources as demonstrated by the high concentrations of ions occurring during the non-monsoon seasons. Nevertheless, other sources, such as anthropogenic pollution, played an important role on chemical variations of glaciers near the human activity centers. This study concluded that air mass transport from different sources played important roles on the spatial distributions and seasonality of glaciochemistry.

  5. Shallow repeating seismic events under an alpine glacier at Mount Rainier, Washington, USA (United States)

    Thelen, Weston A.; Allstadt, Kate E.; De Angelis, Silvio; Malone, Stephen D.; Moran, Seth C.; Vidale, John


    We observed several swarms of repeating low-frequency (1–5 Hz) seismic events during a 3 week period in May–June 2010, near the summit of Mount Rainier, Washington, USA, that likely were a result of stick–slip motion at the base of alpine glaciers. The dominant set of repeating events ('multiplets') featured >4000 individual events and did not exhibit daytime variations in recurrence interval or amplitude. Volcanoes and glaciers around the world are known to produce seismic signals with great variability in both frequency content and size. The low-frequency character and periodic recurrence of the Mount Rainier multiplets mimic long-period seismicity often seen at volcanoes, particularly during periods of unrest. However, their near-surface location, lack of common spectral peaks across the recording network, rapid attenuation of amplitudes with distance, and temporal correlation with weather systems all indicate that ice-related source mechanisms are the most likely explanation. We interpret the low-frequency character of these multiplets to be the result of trapping of seismic energy under glacial ice as it propagates through the highly heterogeneous and attenuating volcanic material. The Mount Rainier multiplet sequences underscore the difficulties in differentiating low-frequency signals due to glacial processes from those caused by volcanic processes on glacier-clad volcanoes.

  6. Sedimentary connection between rock glaciers and torrential channels: definition, inventory and quantification from a test area in the south-western Swiss Alps (United States)

    Kummert, Mario; Barboux, Chloé; Delaloye, Reynald


    order to validate these estimations, the resulting sediment transfer rates are compared to transfer rates calculated from repeated terrestrial LiDAR surveys on selected study cases. This contribution presents results from the application of this methodology in a test study area in the south-western Swiss Alps. The methodology reveals itself suitable to identify rock glaciers connected to the torrential network. For each of the detected rock glaciers, an estimation of the sediment yield is proposed. The transfer rates range from tens of cubic meters per year for some slow moving and/or partially connected landforms, to several thousands of cubic meters per year. References: Delaloye R. (2004). Contribution à l'étude du pergélisol de montagne en zone marginale. GeoFocus vol. 10, Thèse, Département de Géosciences/Géographie, Université de Fribourg. Delaloye, R., Lambiel, C., Gärtner-Roer, I. (2010). Overview of rock glacier kinematics research in the Swiss Alps. Seasonal rhythm, interannual variations and trends over several decades. Geogr. Helv., 65: 2, 135-145. Delaloye, R., Morard, S., Barboux, C., Abbet, D., Gruber, V., Riedo, M. & Gachet, S. (2013). Rapidly moving rock glaciers in Mattertal. In: Graf, C. (Eds). Mattertal - ein Tal in Bewegung. Publikation zur Jahrestagung der Schweizerischen Geomorphologischen Gesellschaft 29. Juni - 1. Juli 2011, St. Niklaus, Birmensdorf, Eidg. Forschungsanstalt WSL, 113 - 124. Gärtner-Roer, I. (2012). Sediment transfer rates of two active rockglaciers in the Swiss Alps. Geomorphology, 167-168, 45-50. Lugon, R. & Stoffel, M. (2010). Rock glacier dynamics and magnitude-frequency relations of debris flows in a high-elevation watershed : Ritigraben, Swiss Alps. Global and Planetary Change, 73, 202-210.

  7. Tibetan Plateau glacier and hydrological change under stratospheric aerosol injection (United States)

    Ji, D.


    As an important inland freshwater resource, mountain glaciers are highly related to human life, they provide water for many large rivers and play a very important role in regional water cycles. The response of mountain glaciers to future climate change is a topic of concern especially to the many people who rely on glacier-fed rivers for purposes such as irrigation. Geoengineering by stratospheric aerosol injection is a method of offsetting the global temperature rise from greenhouse gases. How the geoengineering by stratospheric aerosol injection affects the mass balance of mountain glaciers and adjacent river discharge is little understood. In this study, we use regional climate model WRF and catchment-based river model CaMa-Flood to study the impacts of stratospheric aerosol injection to Tibetan Plateau glacier mass balance and adjacent river discharge. To facilitate mountain glacier mass balance study, we improve the description of mountain glacier in the land surface scheme of WRF. The improvements include: (1) a fine mesh nested in WRF horizontal grid to match the highly non-uniform spatial distribution of the mountain glaciers, (2) revising the radiation flux at the glacier surface considering the surrounding terrain. We use the projections of five Earth system models for CMIP5 rcp45 and GeoMIP G4 scenarios to drive the WRF and CaMa-Flood models. The G4 scenario, which uses stratospheric aerosols to reduce the incoming shortwave while applying the rcp4.5 greenhouse gas forcing, starts stratospheric sulfate aerosol injection at a rate of 5 Tg per year over the period 2020-2069. The ensemble projections suggest relatively slower glacier mass loss rates and reduced river discharge at Tibetan Plateau and adjacent regions under geoengineering scenario by stratospheric aerosol injection.

  8. A revised Canadian perspective: progress in glacier hydrology (United States)

    Munro, D. Scott


    Current research into glacier hydrology is occurring at a time when glaciers around the world, particularly those whose hydrological regimes affect populated areas, are shrinking as they go through a state of perpetual negative annual mass balance. Small glaciers alone are likely to contribute 0·5 to 1 mm year-1 to global sea-level rise, with associated reductions in local freshwater resources, impacts upon freshwater ecosystems and increased risk of hazard due to outburst floods. Changes to the accumulation regimes of glaciers and ice sheets may be partly responsible, so the measurement and distribution of snowfall in glacierized basins, a topic long represented in non-glacierized basin research, is now beginning to receive more attention than it did before, aided by the advent of reliable automatic weather stations that provide data throughout the year. Satellite data continue to be an important information source for summer meltwater estimation, as distributed models, and their need for albedo maps, continue to develop. This further entails the need for simplifications to energy balance components, sacrificing point detail so that spatial calculation may proceed more quickly. The understanding of surface meltwater routing through the glacier to produce stream outflow continues to be a stimulating area of research, as demonstrated by activity at the Trapridge Glacier, Canada, and Canadian involvement in the Haut Glacier d'Arolla, Switzerland. As Canadian glacier monitoring continues to evolve, effort must be directed toward developing situations where mass balance, meltwater generation and flow routing studies can be done together at selected sites. Copyright

  9. Characterization of meltwater 'ingredients' at the Haig Glacier, Canadian Rockies: the importance of glaciers to regional water resources (United States)

    Miller, K.; Marshall, S.


    With rising temperatures, Alberta's glaciers are under stresses which change and alter the timing, amount, and composition of meltwater contributions to rivers that flow from the Rocky Mountains. Meltwater can be stored within a glacier or it can drain through the groundwater system, reducing and delaying meltwater delivery to glacier-fed streams. This study tests whether the glacier meltwater is chemically distinct from rain or snow melt, and thus whether meltwater contributions to higher-order streams that flow from the mountains can be determined through stream chemistry. Rivers like the Bow, North Saskatchewan, and Athabasca are vital waterways for much of Alberta's population. Assessing the extent of glacier meltwater is vital to future water resource planning. Glacier snow/ice and meltwater stream samples were collected during the 2017 summer melt season (May- September) and analyzed for isotope and ion chemistry. The results are being used to model water chemistry evolution in the melt stream through the summer season. A chemical mixing model will be constructed to determine the fractional contributions to the Haig meltwater stream from precipitation, surface melt, and subglacial meltwaters. Distinct chemical water signatures have not been used to partition water sources and understand glacier contributions to rivers in the Rockies. The goal of this work is to use chemical signatures of glacial meltwater to help assess the extent of glacier meltwater in Alberta rivers and how this varies through the summer season.

  10. People, lakes and seashores: Studies from the Baltic Sea basin and adjacent areas in the early and Mid-Holocene (United States)

    Groß, Daniel; Zander, Annabell; Boethius, Adam; Dreibrodt, Stefan; Grøn, Ole; Hansson, Anton; Jessen, Catherine; Koivisto, Satu; Larsson, Lars; Lübke, Harald; Nilsson, Björn


    During the Early and Mid-Holocene significant changes in the ecology and socio-cultural spheres occurred around the Baltic Sea. Because of the underlying climatic changes and thus environmental alterations, the area was the scene for various cultural developments during the period under investigation. In the course of the melting of the glaciers at the end of the last Ice Age, isostatic and eustatic movements caused continual changes to the Baltic Sea basin. Changes in water level, however, affected not only the Early and Mid-Holocene coastlines, but also the whole Baltic Sea drainage system, including large lakes, rivers and watersheds in the hinterland were also dramatically impacted by these ecological changes. Prehistoric people were thus affected by changes in resource availability and reduction or enlargement of their territories, respectively. In order to evaluate the impact of changes in the water and land networks on the environment, resource availability, and human behaviour, and to reconstruct human responses to these changes, we pursue an interdisciplinary approach connecting environmental and archaeological research highlighted through different case studies.

  11. Tidal analysis of GNSS data from a high resolution sensor network at Helheim Glacier (United States)

    Martin, Ian; Aspey, Robin; Baugé, Tim; Edwards, Stuart; Everett, Alistair; James, Timothy; Loskot, Pavel; Murray, Tavi; O'Farrell, Tim; Rutt, Ian


    adoption of beacon based time division multiple access (tdma). The processed GNSS data provides 1-2 cm accurate coordinate time-series at 3-5 second intervals. These time series are able to capture the glaciers response to major calving events as it receded ~1.5 km and smaller diurnal and semi-diurnal variations in vertical and horizontal motion linked to tidal forcing. Using images from time lapse cameras to locate the calving events we are able to quantify the variation in tidal response over the 3km x 5km area at the calving front during the 53 day study period.

  12. Oceanography of Glacier Bay, Alaska: Implications for biological patterns in a glacial fjord estuary (United States)

    Etherington, L.L.; Hooge, P.N.; Hooge, Elizabeth Ross; Hill, D.F.


    Alaska, U.S.A, is one of the few remaining locations in the world that has fjords that contain temperate idewater glaciers. Studying such estuarine systems provides vital information on how deglaciation affects oceanographic onditions of fjords and surrounding coastal waters. The oceanographic system of Glacier Bay, Alaska, is of particular interest ue to the rapid deglaciation of the Bay and the resulting changes in the estuarine environment, the relatively high oncentrations of marine mammals, seabirds, fishes, and invertebrates, and the Bay’s status as a national park, where ommercial fisheries are being phased out. We describe the first comprehensive broad-scale analysis of physical and iological oceanographic conditions within Glacier Bay based on CTD measurements at 24 stations from 1993 to 2002. easonal patterns of near-surface salinity, temperature, stratification, turbidity, and euphotic depth suggest that freshwater nput was highest in summer, emphasizing the critical role of glacier and snowmelt to this system. Strong and persistent tratification of surface waters driven by freshwater input occurred from spring through fall. After accounting for seasonal nd spatial variation, several of the external physical factors (i.e., air temperature, precipitation, day length) explained a large mount of variation in the physical properties of the surface waters. Spatial patterns of phytoplankton biomass varied hroughout the year and were related to stratification levels, euphotic depth, and day length. We observed hydrographic atterns indicative of strong competing forces influencing water column stability within Glacier Bay: high levels of freshwater ischarge promoted stratification in the upper fjord, while strong tidal currents over the Bay’s shallow entrance sill enhanced ertical mixing. Where these two processes met in the central deep basins there were optimal conditions of intermediate tratification, higher light levels, and potential nutrient renewal

  13. Evidence from northwest European bogs shows ‘Little Ice Age’ climatic changes driven by variations in solar activity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mauquoy, D; van Geel, B; Blaauw, Maarten; van der Plicht, J


    Fluctuations in Holocene atmospheric radiocarbon concentrations have been shown to be due to variations in solar activity. Analyses of both Be-10 and C-14 nuclides confirm that production-rate changes during the Holocene were largely modulated by solar activity. Analyses of peat samples from two

  14. Rock Glacier Response to Climate Change in the Argentinian Andes (United States)

    Drewes, J.; Korup, O.; Moreiras, S.


    Rock glaciers are bodies of frozen debris and ice that move under the influence of gravity in permafrost areas. Rock glaciers may store a large amount of sediments and play an important role as prime movers of debris in the Andean sediment cascade. However, little is known about how much sediment and water rock glaciers may store at the mountain-belt scale, and the few existing estimates vary considerably. We address this question for the Argentinian Andes, for which a new glacial inventory containing more than 6500 rock glaciers gives us the opportunity to analyse their relevance within the sediment cascade. We examine the inventory for catchments in five sub-regions, i.e. the Desert Andes (22°-31°S); the Central Andes (31°-36°S); the Northern Andes of Patagonia (36°-45°S); the Southern Andes of Patagonia (45°-52°S); and Tierra del Fuego (52°-55°S), together with climate variables of the WorldClim datasets, and digital topographic data, to estimate how rock-glacier extents may change under different past and future climate scenarios. We observe for the northern Desert Andes that rock glacier toes are at 4000 to 5000 m a.s.l. and a mean annual temperature range of 3° and 8°C, though most rock glaciers are in areas with mean annual temperatures between -5 and 5°C, marking a distinct thermal niche. Rock glaciers are traditionally viewed as diagnostic of sporadic alpine permafrost and their toes are often near the annual mean 0°C isotherm. However, we find that only rock glaciers in the southern Desert Andes and Central Andes are located where annual mean temperature is -2°C. Future scenarios project an increase of > four degrees in these areas, which may further degrade ground ice and potentially change the rates at which rock glaciers advance. Where active rock glaciers become inactive their coarse material, which was formerly bound by ice, may be released into the sediment cascade, whereas accelerating or rapidly downwasting rock glaciers may either

  15. Contrasting medial moraine development at adjacent temperate, maritime glaciers: Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers, South Westland, New Zealand (United States)

    Brook, Martin; Hagg, Wilfried; Winkler, Stefan


    Medial moraines form important pathways for sediment transportation in valley glaciers. Despite the existence of well-defined medial moraines on several glaciers in the New Zealand Southern Alps, medial moraines there have hitherto escaped attention. The evolving morphology and debris content of medial moraines on Franz Josef Glacier and Fox Glacier on the western flank of the Southern Alps is the focus of this study. These temperate maritime glaciers exhibit accumulation zones of multiple basins that feed narrow tongues flowing down steep valleys and terminate 400 m above sea level. The medial moraines at both glaciers become very prominent in the lower ablation zones, where the medial moraines widen, and develop steeper flanks coeval with an increase in relative relief. Medial moraine growth appears somewhat self-limiting in that relief and slope angle increase eventually lead to transport of debris away from the medial moraine by mass-movement-related processes. Despite similarities in overall morphologies, a key contrast in medial moraine formation exists between the two glaciers. At Fox Glacier, the medial moraine consists of angular rockfall-derived debris, folded to varying degrees along flow-parallel axes throughout the tongue. The debris originates above the ELA, coalesces at flow-unit boundaries, and takes a medium/high level transport pathway before subsequently emerging at point-sources aligned with gently dipping fold hinges near the snout. In contrast at Franz Josef Glacier, the medial moraine emerges farther down-glacier immediately below a prominent rock knob. Clasts show a mix of angular to rounded shapes representing high level transport and subglacially transported materials, the latter facies possibly also elevated by supraglacial routing of subglacial meltwater. Our observations confirm that a variety of different debris sources, transport pathways, and structural glaciological processes can interact to form medial moraines within New Zealand

  16. The length of the world's glaciers - a new approach for the global calculation of center lines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Machguth, Horst; Huss, M.


    length using an automated method that relies on glacier surface slope, distance to the glacier margins and a set of trade-off functions. The method is developed for East Greenland, evaluated for East Greenland as well as for Alaska and eventually applied to all similar to 200 000 glaciers around...... appear to be related to characteristics of topography and glacier mass balance. The present study adds glacier length as a key parameter to global glacier inventories. Global and regional scaling laws might prove beneficial in conceptual glacier models....

  17. Aquatic ecosystem responses to Holocene climate change and biome development in boreal, central Asia (United States)

    Mackay, Anson W.; Bezrukova, Elena V.; Leng, Melanie J.; Meaney, Miriam; Nunes, Ana; Piotrowska, Natalia; Self, Angela; Shchetnikov, Alexander; Shilland, Ewan; Tarasov, Pavel; Wang, Luo; White, Dustin


    Boreal ecosystems are highly vulnerable to climate change, and severe ecological impacts in the near future are virtually certain to occur. We undertook a multiproxy study on an alpine lake (ESM-1) at the modern tree-line in boreal, southern Siberia. Steppe and tundra biomes were extensive in eastern Sayan landscapes during the early Holocene. Boreal forest quickly expanded by 9.1 ka BP, and dominated the landscape until c 0.7 ka BP, when the greatest period of compositional turnover occurred. At this time, alpine meadow landscape expanded and Picea obovata colonised new habitats along river valleys and lake shorelines, because of prevailing cool, moist conditions. During the early Holocene, chironomid assemblages were dominated by cold stenotherms. Diatoms for much of the Holocene were dominated by alkaliphilous, fragilarioid taxa, up until 0.2 ka BP, when epiphytic species expanded, indicative of increased habitat availability. C/N mass ratios ranged between 9.5 and 13.5 (11.1-15.8 C/N atomic ratios), indicative of algal communities dominating organic matter contributions to bottom sediments with small, persistent contributions from vascular plants. However, δ13C values increased steadily from -34.9‰ during the early Holocene (9.3 ka BP) to -24.8‰ by 0.6 ka BP. This large shift in magnitude may be due to a number of factors, including increasing within-lake productivity, increasing disequilibrium between the isotopic balance of the lake with the atmosphere as the lake became isotopically ‘mature’, and declining soil respiration linked to small, but distinct retreat in forest biomes. The influence of climatic variables on landscape vegetation was assessed using redundancy analysis (RDA), a linear, direct ordination technique. Changes in July insolation at 60 °N significantly explained over one-fifth of the variation in species composition, while changes in estimates of northern hemisphere temperature and ice-rafted debris events in the North Atlantic

  18. Millennial- to century-scale variability in Gulf of Mexico Holocene climate records (United States)

    Poore, R.Z.; Dowsett, H.J.; Verardo, S.; Quinn, T.M.


    Proxy records from two piston cores in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) provide a detailed (50-100 year resolution) record of climate variability over the last 14,000 years. Long-term (millennial-scale) trends and changes are related to the transition from glacial to interglacial conditions and movement of the average position of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) related to orbital forcing. The ??18O of the surface-dwelling planktic foraminifer Globigerinoides ruber show negative excursions between 14 and 10.2 ka (radiocarbon years) that reflect influx of meltwater into the western GOM during melting of the Laurentide Ice Sheet. The relative abundance of the planktic foraminifer Globigerinoides sacculifer is related to transport of Caribbean water into the GOM. Maximum transport of Caribbean surface waters and moisture into the GOM associated with a northward migration of the average position of the ITCZ occurs between about 6.5 and 4.5 ka. In addition, abundance variations of G. sacculifer show century-scale variability throughout most of the Holocene. The GOM record is consistent with records from other areas, suggesting that century-scale variability is a pervasive feature of Holocene climate. The frequency of several cycles in the climate records is similar to cycles identified in proxy records of solar variability, indicating that at least some of the century-scale climate variability during the Holocene is due to external (solar) forcing.

  19. Impact of a drier Early-Mid-Holocene climate upon Amazonian forests. (United States)

    Mayle, Francis E; Power, Mitchell J


    This paper uses a palaeoecological approach to examine the impact of drier climatic conditions of the Early-Mid-Holocene (ca 8000-4000 years ago) upon Amazonia's forests and their fire regimes. Palaeovegetation (pollen data) and palaeofire (charcoal) records are synthesized from 20 sites within the present tropical forest biome, and the underlying causes of any emergent patterns or changes are explored by reference to independent palaeoclimate data and present-day patterns of precipitation, forest cover and fire activity across Amazonia. During the Early-Mid-Holocene, Andean cloud forest taxa were replaced by lowland tree taxa as the cloud base rose while lowland ecotonal areas, which are presently covered by evergreen rainforest, were instead dominated by savannahs and/or semi-deciduous dry forests. Elsewhere in the Amazon Basin there is considerable spatial and temporal variation in patterns of vegetation disturbance and fire, which probably reflects the complex heterogeneous patterns in precipitation and seasonality across the basin, and the interactions between climate change, drought- and fire susceptibility of the forests, and Palaeo-Indian land use. Our analysis shows that the forest biome in most parts of Amazonia appears to have been remarkably resilient to climatic conditions significantly drier than those of today, despite widespread evidence of forest burning. Only in ecotonal areas is there evidence of biome replacement in the Holocene. From this palaeoecological perspective, we argue against the Amazon forest 'dieback' scenario simulated for the future.

  20. Mid-Holocene onset of high-amplitude decadal to centennial scale variability along the Peru Chile Margin (United States)

    Chazen, C. R.; Altabet, M.; Herbert, T. D.


    Understanding the natural climate variations in the eastern tropical Pacific is crucial for predicting the evolution of the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) system and for anticipating the ways in which increases in atmospheric CO2 will affect climate. Here we present the first continuous, high-resolution (11-12 yr) climate record across the mid-Holocene transition (10ka-1.4ka) from the Peru-Chile Margin near the epicenter of the modern ENSO system. Although the high productivity of the Peru margin should promote high deposition rates, and the anaerobic bottom water conditions should inhibit sediment mixing by benthic organisms, nearly all sediment cores recovered from this region suffer from major gaps in Holocene sedimentation. Our data comes from a ~5 meter piston core collected from the mid-Peruvian shelf (15° 15"S, 75° 58"W, ~250mwd) in the heart of the oxygen minimum/denitrification zone that provides the first uninterrupted archive of conditions along the Peru-Chile margin. A suite of geochemical proxies allow us to reconstruct sea surface temperature (SST- Uk'37), phytoplankton productivity (C37total and %BSi), and thermocline ventilation (δ15N), variables that are tightly correlated to ENSO events today. Despite the observation that the mean late Holocene state of all three variables did not change over the last 10,000 years, our data reveal a dramatic increase in climate variability after the mid Holocene (~5ka); represented by prolonged periods (50-200yrs) of climate extremes, which are absent in the early Holocene. To further investigate these climate extremes we examine benthic foraminiferal assemblages and oxygen isotopes in combination with our other proxy records in selected late Holocene sections. The roughly centennial-scale oscillations do not show typical El Niño-La Niña correlations between proxies. We therefore posit that a significant fraction of super-ENSO variance during the course of the Holocene may originate outside the tropics

  1. Exploring the links between transient water inputs and glacier velocity in a small temperate glacier in southeastern Alaska (United States)

    Heavner, M.; Habermann, M.; Hood, E. W.; Fatland, D. R.


    Glaciers along the Gulf of Alaska are thinning and retreating rapidly. An important control on the rate at which ice is being lost is basal motion because higher glacier velocities increase the rate at which ice is delivered to ablation zones. Recent research has focused on understanding the effects of sub-glacial water storage on glacier basal motion. In this study, we examined two seasons of the effect of hydrologic controls (from large rainfall events as well as a glacier lake outburst floods) on the velocity of the Lemon Creek Glacier in southeastern Alaska. Lemon Creek Glacier is a moderately sized (~16~km2) temperate glacier at the margin of the Juneau Icefield. An ice-marginal lake forms at the head of the glacier and catastrophically drains once or twice every melt season. We have instrumented the glacier with two meteorological stations: one at the head of the glacier near the ice-marginal lake and another several kilometers below the terminus. These stations measure temperature, relative humidity, precipitation, incoming solar radiation and wind speed and direction. Lake stage in the ice-marginal lake was monitored with a pressure transducer. In addition, Lemon Creek was instrumented with a water quality sonde at the location of a US Geological Survey gaging station approximately 3 km downstream from the glacier terminus. The sonde provides continuous measurements of water temperature, dissolved oxygen, turbidity and conductivity. Finally, multiple Trimble NetRS dual frequency, differential GPS units were deployed on the glacier along the centerline of the glacier. All of the instruments were run continuously from May-September 2008 and May-September 2009 and captured threee outburst floods associated with the ice-marginal lake drainage as well as several large (>3~cm) rainfall events associated with frontal storms off of the Gulf of Alaska in late summer. Taken together, these data allow us to test the hypothesis that water inputs which overwhelm

  2. Isotope heterogeneity of Pre-Holocene groundwater in Iceland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sveinbjörnsdóttir, Á.E.; Arnorsson, S.; Heinemeier, Jan


    In recent years, it has been shown that groundwater with a Pre-Holocene component is more common in the Icelandic bedrock than previously thought. Some of the Pre-Holocene water samples are more depleted in delta H-2 and delta O-18 than any mean annual precipitation in Iceland today due to the cold...... climate at that time. However, most often Pre-Holocene water components cannot be detected based on the water isotopes alone due to mixing with younger and isotopically heavier water. The Cl concentration in relation to the water isotopes in specific areas has proved to be a good indicator of a Pre......-Holocene component in the groundwater. The deuterium excess value may also help to identify water from a different climate regime, if no oxygen shift has occurred. The relative abundance of a Pre-Holocene water component of the Icelandic groundwater has led to the understanding that combined interpretation of water...

  3. Oxygen isotope ratios in the shell of Mytilus edulis: Archives of glacier meltwater in Greenland?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Versteegh, E.A.A.; Blicher, M.E.; Mortensen, J.


    Melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet (GrIS) is accelerating and will contribute significantly to global sea level rise during the 21st century. Instrumental data on GrIS melting only cover the last few decades, and proxy data extending our knowledge into the past are vital for validating models...... these variations, because it precipitates its shell calcite in oxygen isotopic equilibrium with ambient seawater. As M. edulis shells are known to occur in raised shorelines and archaeological shell middens from previous Holocene warm periods, this species may be ideal in reconstructing past meltwater dynamics. We...

  4. A numerical model for meltwater channel evolution in glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. H. Jarosch


    Full Text Available Meltwater channels form an integral part of the hydrological system of a glacier. Better understanding of how meltwater channels develop and evolve is required to fully comprehend supraglacial and englacial meltwater drainage. Incision of supraglacial stream channels and subsequent roof closure by ice deformation has been proposed in recent literature as a possible englacial conduit formation process. Field evidence for supraglacial stream incision has been found in Svalbard and Nepal. In Iceland, where volcanic activity provides meltwater with temperatures above 0 °C, rapid enlargement of supraglacial channels has been observed. Supraglacial channels provide meltwater through englacial passages to the subglacial hydrological systems of big ice sheets, which in turn affects ice sheet motion and their contribution to eustatic sea level change. By coupling, for the first time, a numerical ice dynamic model to a hydraulic model which includes heat transfer, we investigate the evolution of meltwater channels and their incision behaviour. We present results for different, constant meltwater fluxes, different channel slopes, different meltwater temperatures, different melt rate distributions in the channel as well as temporal variations in meltwater flux. The key parameters governing incision rate and depth are channel slope, meltwater temperature loss to the ice and meltwater flux. Channel width and geometry are controlled by melt rate distribution along the channel wall. Calculated Nusselt numbers suggest that turbulent mixing is the main heat transfer mechanism in the meltwater channels studied.

  5. Glaciers of Avacha group of volcanoes in Neoholocene

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. M. Manevich


    Full Text Available The study of moraines at the Avacha volcano group revealed that glaciers changes at all volcanoes within the group happened almost synchronously. Glacial deposits could be grouped into three generations, corresponding to three periods of glacier fluctuations in Neoholocene. The largest glaciation within the group occurred ~2000 years ago. Fragments of moraine, corresponding to that period were found only in the moraine complex of the Ditmar Glacier which was 15% larger then today at that time. The most of moraines at the Avacha volcano group were formed during the Little Ice Age, which in the studied region continued up to the first decades of XX centuries. The maximal advance of glaciers probably happened in XVII century. The moraine corresponding to that period was found at the Kozelsky Glacier valley. At present time the total area of glaciers which moraines were described and dated approaches 21.46  km2. The area of reconstructed moraines corresponding to the Little Ice Age is estimated to be 2.79 km2, therefore at that period the total glaciation area reaches 24,25 км2 exceeding the present area by 13%. It could be claimed that in general during the time past the Little Ice Age the glaciation nature and glacier types did not change sufficiently. The rate of glacier degradation at various parts of the group is different and depends mainly on exposition. At the valleys of four glaciers we found moraines formed in the middle of XX century. They may appear in 1941–1952 when the unfavorable weather conditions leaded to stable negative anomalies in accumulation have happened.

  6. Causes of early Holocene desertification in arid central Asia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Liya [Lanzhou University, Key Laboratory of Western China' s Environmental System, Lanzhou, Gansu (China); University of Kiel, Institute of Geosciences, Kiel (Germany); Chen, Fahu [Lanzhou University, Key Laboratory of Western China' s Environmental System, Lanzhou, Gansu (China); Morrill, Carrie [University of Colorado, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Boulder, CO (United States); NOAA' s National Climatic Data Center, Paleoclimatology Branch, Boulder, CO (United States); Otto-Bliesner, Bette L.; Rosenbloom, Nan [National Center for Atmospheric Research, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, Boulder, CO (United States)


    Paleoclimate records of effective moisture (precipitation minus evaporation, or P-E) show a dry (low effective moisture) period in mid-latitude arid/semi-arid central Asia during the early Holocene (11,000-8,000 years ago) relative to the middle and late Holocene, in contrast to evidence for greater-than-present precipitation at the same time in the south and east Asian monsoonal areas. To investigate the spatial differences in climate response over mid-latitude central Asia and monsoonal Asia we conducted a series of simulations with the Community Climate System Model version 3 coupled climate model for the early, middle and late Holocene. The simulations test the climatic impact of all important forcings for the early Holocene, including changes in orbital parameters, the presence of the remnant Laurentide ice sheet and deglacial freshening of the North Atlantic. Model results clearly show the early Holocene patterns indicated by proxy records, including both the decreased effective moisture in arid central Asia, which occurs in the model primarily during the winter months, and the increase in summer monsoon precipitation in south and east Asia. The model results suggest that dry conditions in the early Holocene in central Asia are closely related to decreased water vapor advection due to reduced westerly wind speed and less evaporation upstream from the Mediterranean, Black, and Caspian Seas in boreal winter. As an extra forcing to the early Holocene climate system, the Laurentide ice sheet and meltwater fluxes have a substantial cooling effect over high latitudes, especially just over and downstream of the ice sheets, but contribute only to a small degree to the early Holocene aridity in central Asia. Instead, most of the effective moisture signal can be explained by orbital forcing decreasing the early Holocene latitudinal temperature gradient and wintertime surface temperature. We find little evidence for regional subsidence related to a stronger summer Asian

  7. Holocene temperature variability revealed by brGDGTs in subtropical southwestern China (United States)

    Feng, X.; Zhao, C.


    Subtropical areas are important source region of moisture and heat in global climate system. Paleoclimate reconstructions from these regions, especially quantitative records, would not only help to better understand the nature of climate system through time, but also provide important constraining dataset for long-term ecosystem variations in these ecological important areas. To date, quantitative climate records with reliable chronological controls are still limited from terrestrial archives in subtropical areas. Here we present a 50-year-resolution quantitative temperature record throughout the Holocene based on branched GDGTs at a small alpine lake, Tiancai Lake (26°38'E, 99°43'N, 3898 m.a.s.l) in southwestern China. The record is based on a temporal calibration between instrumental mean annual air temperature (MAAT) and brGDGT compounds (GDGT-IIIa, GDGT-IIa', GDGT-IIb, GDGT-Ia and GDGT-Ic). The MAAT was relatively low -0.6 ° between 11 and 7.5 ka, then abruptly increased 1 ° to 4 °until 7 ka. The MAAT was relatively warm 2° between 7 and 1 ka, then decreased to 1° over the last 1 ka. The Middle to Late Holocene was 3 ° warmer than the Early Holocene. The MAAT variation at Lake Tiancai is supported by changes in evergreen oaks and Tsuga from the same sediment core, suggesting that the growth of cold-tolerant forest in place of subtropical evergreen broadleaved forest has been driven by the decrease in MAAT. The early Holocene cold interval revealed by our record and pollen data is different with the chironomid-based summer temperature reconstruction from the same lake, the latter has been driven by summer insolation. This difference suggests that a pronounced winter contribution to the mean annual temperature during the early Holocene, which was probably caused by a low winter insolation, and strengthened by a sparse vegetation cover and influences of winter ice/snow cover in tropical high latitude regions.

  8. Ice thickness measurements and volume estimates for glaciers in Norway (United States)

    Andreassen, Liss M.; Huss, Matthias; Melvold, Kjetil; Elvehøy, Hallgeir; Winsvold, Solveig H.


    Whereas glacier areas in many mountain regions around the world now are well surveyed using optical satellite sensors and available in digital inventories, measurements of ice thickness are sparse in comparison and a global dataset does not exist. Since the 1980s ice thickness measurements have been carried out by ground penetrating radar on many glaciers in Norway, often as part of contract work for hydropower companies with the aim to calculate hydrological divides of ice caps. Measurements have been conducted on numerous glaciers, covering the largest ice caps as well as a few smaller mountain glaciers. However, so far no ice volume estimate for Norway has been derived from these measurements. Here, we give an overview of ice thickness measurements in Norway, and use a distributed model to interpolate and extrapolate the data to provide an ice volume estimate of all glaciers in Norway. We also compare the results to various volume-area/thickness-scaling approaches using values from the literature as well as scaling constants we obtained from ice thickness measurements in Norway. Glacier outlines from a Landsat-derived inventory from 1999-2006 together with a national digital elevation model were used as input data for the ice volume calculations. The inventory covers all glaciers in mainland Norway and consists of 2534 glaciers (3143 glacier units) covering an area of 2692 km2 ± 81 km2. To calculate the ice thickness distribution of glaciers in Norway we used a distributed model which estimates surface mass balance distribution, calculates the volumetric balance flux and converts it into thickness using the flow law for ice. We calibrated this model with ice thickness data for Norway, mainly by adjusting the mass balance gradient. Model results generally agree well with the measured values, however, larger deviations were found for some glaciers. The total ice volume of Norway was estimated to be 275 km3 ± 30 km3. From the ice thickness data set we selected

  9. Seismic observations of subglacial water discharge from glacier-dammed lake drainage at Lemon Creek Glacier, Alaska (United States)

    Labedz, C. R.; Bartholomaus, T. C.; Gimbert, F.; Amundson, J. M.; Vore, M. E.; Karplus, M. S.; Tsai, V. C.


    Subglacial water flow affects the dynamics of glaciers, influencing basal sliding, sediment transport, fracturing, and terminus dynamics. However, the difficulty of directly observing glacial hydrologic systems creates significant challenges in understanding such glacier behavior. Recently-developed descriptions of ground motion generated by subglacial water flow provide a promising basis for new and unique characterization of glacial hydrologic systems. Particularly, high-frequency ( 1.5-20 Hz) seismic tremor observed near glaciers has been shown to correlate with subglacial runoff. In addition, specific properties of subglacial water flow like water pressure, conduit size, sediment flux, and grain size can be inferred by examining hysteretic behavior over time between different parts of these signals. In this study, we observe the seismic signals generated by subglacial water flow using a high-density array of more than 100 nodes deployed for 10-25 days, and six broadband seismometers deployed for 80 days at Lemon Creek Glacier, Alaska. Specifically, we examine the 36-hour drainage of a glacier-dammed lake into subglacial conduits, comparing hydrologic metrics such as lake level, precipitation, and outlet stream flow rate to the power of seismic signals. Our node array captures this annually-significant hydraulic transient with sensors spaced approximately every 250 m over the majority of the 5.7 km long glacier. This and other lake drainage events provide natural experiments for exploring glaciohydraulic tremor, because the increased water flux through the glacier increases the power of the tremor and hosts the hysteretic behaviors described previously. Analysis of the tremor from events such as this can be extended to further understand subglacial runoff at Lemon Creek glacier and for glacier hydrology in general.

  10. Patch-reef morphology as a proxy for Holocene sea-level variability, Northern Florida Keys, USA (United States)

    Brock, J.C.; Palaseanu-Lovejoy, M.; Wright, C.W.; Nayegandhi, A.


    A portion of the northern Florida Keys reef tract was mapped with the NASA Experimental Advanced Airborne Research Lidar (EAARL) and the morphology of patch reefs was related to variations in Holocene sea level. Following creation of a lidar digital elevation model (DEM), geospatial analyses delineated morphologic attributes of 1,034 patch reefs (reef depth, basal area, height, volume, and topographic complexity). Morphometric analysis revealed two morphologically different populations of patch reefs associated with two distinct depth intervals above and below a water depth of 7.7 m. Compared to shallow reefs, the deep reefs were smaller in area and volume and showed no trend in topographic complexity relative to water depth. Shallow reefs were more variable in area and volume and became flatter and less topographically complex with decreasing water depth. The knoll-like morphology of deep reefs was interpreted as consistent with steady and relatively rapidly rising early Holocene sea level that restricted the lateral growth of reefs. The morphology of shallow 'pancake-shaped' reefs at the highest platform elevations was interpreted as consistent with fluctuating sea level during the late Holocene. Although the ultimate cause for the morphometric depth trends remains open to interpretation, these interpretations are compatible with a recent eustatic sea-level curve that hindcasts fluctuating late Holocene sea level. Thus it is suggested that the morphologic differences represent two stages of reef accretion that occurred during different sea-level conditions. ?? 2008 Springer-Verlag.

  11. The Holocene Geomagnetic Field: Spikes, Low Field Anomalies, and Asymmetries (United States)

    Constable, C.


    Our understanding of the Holocene magnetic field is constrained by individual paleomagnetic records of variable quality and resolution, composite regional secular variation curves, and low resolution global time-varying geomagnetic field models. Although spatial and temporal data coverages have greatly improved in recent years, typical views of millennial-scale secular variation and the underlying physical processes continue to be heavily influenced by more detailed field structure and short term variability inferred from the historical record and modern observations. Recent models of gyre driven decay of the geomagnetic dipole on centennial time scales, and studies of the evolution of the South Atlantic Anomaly provide one prominent example. Since 1840 dipole decay has largely been driven by meridional flux advection, with generally smaller fairly steady contributions from magnetic diffusion. The decay is dominantly associated with geomagnetic activity in the Southern Hemisphere. In contrast to the present decay, dipole strength generally grew between 1500 and 1000 BC, sustaining high but fluctuating values around 90-100 ZAm2 until after 1500 AD. Thus high dipole moments appear to have been present shortly after 1000 AD at the time of the Levantine spikes, which represent extreme variations in regional geomagnetic field strength. It has been speculated that the growth in dipole moment originated from a strong flux patch near the equatorial region at the core-mantle boundary that migrated north and west to augment the dipole strength, suggesting the presence of a large-scale anticyclonic gyre in the northern hemisphere, not totally unlike the southern hemisphere flow that dominates present day dipole decay. The later brief episodes of high field strength in the Levant may have contributed to prolonged values of high dipole strength until the onset of dipole decay in the late second millennium AD. This could support the concept of a large-scale stable flow

  12. Influences of Holocene sea level, regional tectonics, and fluvial, gravity and slope currents induced sedimentation on the regional geomorphology of the continental slope off northwestern India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Chauhan, O.S.; Almeida, F.

    the Holocene sea level. The Bombay high area has slope breaks between 400 and 600 m, whereas off Saurashtra steep breaks in the slope occur between 560 and 960 m depth. Further southwards, at the slope, elevations and depressions are present. Variations...

  13. Hydro-chemical Characterization of Glacier Melt Water of Ponkar Glacier, Manang, Nepal. (United States)

    Shrestha, R.; Sandeep, S.


    The study was carried out in Ponkar Glacier, representing Himalayan glacier of Nepal. The study aims in determining the physical-chemical properties of the glacier melt water. The sampling sites included moraine dammed, Ponkar Lake at 4100 m a.s.l to the downstream glaciated stream at 3580 m a.s.l. The water samples were collected from the seven different sites. Temperature was recorded by digital multi-thermometer on site. The samples were brought to the laboratory and the parameters were analyzed according to the APHA, AWWA and WEF standards. The glacier meltwater was slightly basic with pH 7.44 (±0.307). The meltwater was found to be in the range 30-60 which implies the water is moderately soft resulting value of concentration 36.429±8.664 mg CaCO3 L-1 and the electrical conductivity was found to be 47.14 (±11.18) µS/cm. The concentration of anion was in the order of HCO3 - > Cl- > SO42- > NO3- > TP-PO43- with the concentration 194.286±40.677, 55.707±30.265, 11.533±1.132 mgL-1, 1.00±0.7 mgL-1 and 0.514±0.32 mgL-1 respectively. Calcium carbonate weathering was found out to be the major source of dissolved ions in the region. The heavy metals were found in the order Al>Fe>Mn>Zn with concentration 1.34±0.648, 1.103±0.917, 0.08±0.028 and 0.023±0.004 mgL-1 respectively. The concentration of iron, manganese and zinc in some sites were below the detection limit. These results represent baseline data for the physical-chemical properties of the glacier meltwater

  14. InSAR Observations and Finite Element Modeling of Crustal Deformation Around a Surging Glacier, Iceland (United States)

    Spaans, K.; Auriac, A.; Sigmundsson, F.; Hooper, A. J.; Bjornsson, H.; Pálsson, F.; Pinel, V.; Feigl, K. L.


    Icelandic ice caps, covering ~11% of the country, are known to be surging glaciers. Such process implies an important local crustal subsidence due to the large ice mass being transported to the ice edge during the surge in a few months only. In 1993-1995, a glacial surge occurred at four neighboring outlet glaciers in the southwestern part of Vatnajökull ice cap, the largest ice cap in Iceland. We estimated that ~16±1 km3 of ice have been moved during this event while the fronts of some of the outlet glaciers advanced by ~1 km.Surface deformation associated with this surge has been surveyed using Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) acquisitions from 1992-2002, providing high resolution ground observations of the study area. The data show about 75 mm subsidence at the ice edge of the outlet glaciers following the transport of the large volume of ice during the surge (Fig. 1). The long time span covered by the InSAR images enabled us to remove ~12 mm/yr of uplift occurring in this area due to glacial isostatic adjustment from the retreat of Vatnajökull ice cap since the end of the Little Ice Age in Iceland. We then used finite element modeling to investigate the elastic Earth response to the surge, as well as confirm that no significant viscoelastic deformation occurred as a consequence of the surge. A statistical approach based on Bayes' rule was used to compare the models to the observations and obtain an estimate of the Young's modulus (E) and Poisson's ratio (v) in Iceland. The best-fitting models are those using a one-kilometer thick top layer with v=0.17 and E between 12.9-15.3 GPa underlain by a layer with v=0.25 and E from 67.3 to 81.9 GPa. Results demonstrate that InSAR data and finite element models can be used successfully to reproduce crustal deformation induced by ice mass variations at Icelandic ice caps.Fig. 1: Interferograms spanning 1993 July 31 to 1995 June 19, showing the surge at Tungnaárjökull (Tu.), Skaftárjökull (Sk.) and S

  15. Rapid melting dynamics of an alpine glacier with repeated UAV photogrammetry (United States)

    Rossini, Micol; Di Mauro, Biagio; Garzonio, Roberto; Baccolo, Giovanni; Cavallini, Giuseppe; Mattavelli, Matteo; De Amicis, Mattia; Colombo, Roberto


    Glacial retreat is a major problem in the Alps, especially over the past 40 years. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can provide an unparalleled opportunity to track the spatiotemporal variations in rapidly changing glacial morphological features related to glacial dynamics. The objective of this study is to evaluate the potential of commercial UAV platforms to detect the evolution of the surface topography and morphology of an alpine glacier over a short time scale through the repeated acquisition of high-resolution photogrammetric data. Two high-resolution UAV surveys were performed on the ablation region of the Morteratsch Glacier (Swiss Alps) in July and September 2016. First, structure-from-motion (SfM) techniques were applied to create orthophotos and digital surface models (DSMs) of the glacial surface from multi-view UAV acquisitions. The geometric accuracy of DSMs and orthophotos was checked using differential global navigation satellite system (dGNSS) ground measurements, and an accuracy of approximately 17 cm was achieved for both models. High-resolution orthophotos and DSMs made it possible to provide a detailed characterization of rapidly changing glacial environments. Comparing the data from the first and the second campaigns, the evolution of the lower part of the glacier in response to summer ablation was evaluated. Two distinct processes were revealed and accurately quantified: an average lowering of the surface, with a mean ice thinning of 4 m, and an average horizontal displacement of 3 m due to flowing ice. These data were validated through a comparison of different algorithms and approaches, which clearly showed the consistency of the results. The melt rate spatial patterns were then compared to the glacial brightness and roughness maps derived from the September UAV acquisition. The results showed that the DSM differences describing the glacial melt rates were inversely related to the glacial brightness. In contrast, a positive but weaker

  16. The character and mechanism of glacial variation in the peripheral Tibetan Plateau (United States)

    Yi, S.; Wang, Q.; Sun, W.


    Global warming has accelerated glacier retreat in the peripheral Tibetan Plateau. Our study demonstrates consistent glacier variation in time series constructed by laser altimetry and space gravimetry in these regions. It largely enhances reliability of glacier changes and narrows down significant inconsistent in previous studies. The glacial melt is roughly weakening from southeast to northwest: from Nyenchen Tanglha to Himalaya then to Pamir even a positive gain in the Western Kunlun. A sharp melt of glacier on Nyenchen Tanglha is primarily caused by high temperature and rapid rise rather than decreasing in annual precipitation as previously thought. Glaciers on Hindu Kush, Karakoram and Western Kun even Pamir are less affect by slow rise of local temperature.

  17. Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center vehicular and pedestrian traffic congestion study (United States)


    The Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center of Tongass National Forest in Juneau, Alaska is experiencing vehicular and pedestrian congestion. This study was initiated by the United States Forest Service, Alaska Region, in cooperation with Western Federal L...

  18. Glacier shrinkage and water resources in the Andes (United States)

    Francou, Bernard; Coudrain, Anne

    For more than a century glaciers around the world have been melting as air temperatures rise due to a combination of natural processes and human activity. The disappearance of these glaciers can have wide-ranging effects, such as the creation of new natural hazards or changes in stream flow that could threaten water suppliesSome of the most dramatic melting has occurred in the Andes mountain range in South America. To highlight the climatic and glacial change in the Andes and to encourage the scientific community to strengthen the glacier observation network that stretches from Colombia to the Patagonian ice fields, the Instituto Nacional de Recursos Naturales (INRENA), Perú, and the Institute of Research and Development (IRD), France, recently organized the second Symposium on Mass Balance of Andean Glaciers in Huaráz,Perú.

  19. Glacier-influenced sedimentation on high-latitude continental margins

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Dowdeswell, J. A; Cofaigh, C. Ó


    This book examines the process and patterns of glacier-influenced sedimentation on high-latitude continental margins and the geophysical and geological signatures of the resulting sediments and landform...

  20. Discovering Chile's hidden water treasures – rock glaciers | IDRC ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)


    May 30, 2011 ... This means the research methods for investigating rock glaciers are ... group advising Chile's national environmental protection agency on ... Communities' perception of climate change risks in South America's Atlantic coasts.

  1. Rock glaciers, Fletschhorn Area, Valais, Switzerland, Version 1 (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set contains a total amount of 74 rock glaciers which were investigated in the Fletschhorn Area in the southern Swiss Alps during the summer of 1995. The...

  2. Investigating cold based summit glaciers through direct access to the glacier base: a case study constraining the maximum age of Chli Titlis glacier, Switzerland (United States)

    Bohleber, Pascal; Hoffmann, Helene; Kerch, Johanna; Sold, Leo; Fischer, Andrea


    Cold glaciers at the highest locations of the European Alps have been investigated by drilling ice cores to retrieve their stratigraphic climate records. Findings like the Oetztal ice man have demonstrated that small ice bodies at summit locations of comparatively lower altitudes may also contain old ice if locally frozen to the underlying bedrock. In this case, constraining the maximum age of their lowermost ice part may help to identify past periods with minimum ice extent in the Alps. However, with recent warming and consequent glacier mass loss, these sites may not preserve their unique climate information for much longer. Here we utilized an existing ice cave at Chli Titlis (3030 m), central Switzerland, to perform a case study for investigating the maximum age of cold-based summit glaciers in the Alps. The cave offers direct access to the glacier stratigraphy without the logistical effort required in ice core drilling. In addition, a pioneering exploration had already demonstrated stagnant cold ice conditions at Chli Titlis, albeit more than 25 years ago. Our englacial temperature measurements and the analysis of the isotopic and physical properties of ice blocks sampled at three locations within the ice cave show that cold ice still exists fairly unchanged today. State-of-the-art micro-radiocarbon analysis constrains the maximum age of the ice at Chli Titlis to about 5000 years before present. By this means, the approach presented here will contribute to a future systematic investigation of cold-based summit glaciers, also in the Eastern Alps.

  3. A high-resolution Early Holocene-late MIS 3 environmental rock- and palaeomagnetic record from Lake Sf. Ana, Carpathian Mts, Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel VERES


    Full Text Available Lacustrine sediments are excellent sources of palaeoenvironmental and palaeoclimatic information because they usually provide continuous and high-resolution records. In centraleastern Europe however lacustrine records that extend beyond the Holocene are rather sparse.Palaeomagnetic records from this region are also insufficiently explored, and usually associated with terrestrial deposits such as loess. In this context, the lacustrine record of Lake Sf. Ana, a volcanic crater lake in the East Carpathians, Romania, provides an important archive for reconstructing past paleomagnetic secular variation in the region from early Holocene to late Marine Isotope Stage (MIS 3.

  4. Lake Baikal isotope records of Holocene Central Asian precipitation (United States)

    Swann, George E. A.; Mackay, Anson W.; Vologina, Elena; Jones, Matthew D.; Panizzo, Virginia N.; Leng, Melanie J.; Sloane, Hilary J.; Snelling, Andrea M.; Sturm, Michael


    Climate models currently provide conflicting predictions of future climate change across Central Asia. With concern over the potential for a change in water availability to impact communities and ecosystems across the region, an understanding of historical trends in precipitation is required to aid model development and assess the vulnerability of the region to future changes in the hydroclimate. Here we present a record from Lake Baikal, located in the southern Siberian region of central Asia close to the Mongolian border, which demonstrates a relationship between the oxygen isotope composition of diatom silica (δ18Odiatom) and precipitation to the region over the 20th and 21st Century. From this, we suggest that annual rates of precipitation in recent times are at their lowest for the past 10,000 years and identify significant long-term variations in precipitation throughout the early to late Holocene interval. Based on comparisons to other regional records, these trends are suggested to reflect conditions across the wider Central Asian region around Lake Baikal and highlight the potential for further changes in precipitation with future climate change.

  5. Late Holocene environmental reconstruction using cave sediments from Belize (United States)

    Polk, Jason S.; van Beynen, Philip E.; Reeder, Philip P.


    Cave sediments collected from Reflection Cave on the Vaca Plateau, Belize show variations in the δ13C values of their fulvic acids (FAs), which indicate periods of vegetation change caused by climatic and Maya influences during the late Holocene. The δ13C values range from - 27.11‰ to - 21.52‰, a shift of ˜ 5.59‰, which suggests fluctuating contributions of C 3 and C 4 plants throughout the last 2.5 ka, with C 4 plant input reflecting periods of Maya agriculture. Maya activity in the study area occurred at different intensities from ˜ 2600 cal yr BP until ˜ 1500 cal yr BP, after which agricultural practices waned as the Maya depopulated the area. These changes in plant assemblages were in response to changes in available water resources, with increased aridity leading to the eventual abandonment of agricultural areas. The Ix Chel archaeological site, located in the study area, is a highland site that would have been among the first agricultural settlements to be affected during periods of aridity. During these periods, minimal water resources would have been available in this highly karstified, well-drained area, and supplemental groundwater extraction would have been difficult due to the extreme depth of the water table.

  6. Rock glaciers in the Suntar‑Khayata Range

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. M. Lytkin


    Full Text Available The remote map‑making technique and results of field investigations made possible for the first time to reveal a great number of rock glaciers within the area of the Suntar‑Khayata Range (North‑East Asia. A total of 540 formations were identified. Among them, 47 rock glaciers were classified as corrie (cirque tongue‑shaped formations and 493 ones – as niche lobe‑shaped (single‑ and multi‑lobe rock glaciers. Occurrence of such formations is 8.4/100 km2, that is the largest in the North‑East Asia. The rock glaciers in this region are found within a range of true altitudes from 1297 up to 2402 m asl. The majority of active features, however, are confined to the interval between 1500 and 1900 m asl. Rock glaciers occur in the altitudinal range of 1297 to 2402 m asl. The majority of active features, however, are confined to the interval between 1500 and 1900 m asl, and the main part of active formations is located within the range of 1500‑2500 m. The frequency analysis of true altitudes of the rock‑glacier occurrence indicates that their formation can be caused by the hypsometry of the region relation to morphoclimatic zonality.

  7. Updated Estimates of Glacier Mass Change for Western North America (United States)

    Menounos, B.; Gardner, A. S.; Howat, I.; Berthier, E.; Dehecq, A.; Noh, M. J.; Pelto, B. M.


    Alpine glaciers are critical components in Western North America's hydrologic cycle. We use varied remotely-sensed datasets to provide updated mass change estimates for Region 2 of the Randolf Glacier Inventory (RGI-02 - all North American glaciers outside of Alaska). Our datasets include: i) aerial laser altimetry surveys completed over many thousands of square kilometers; and ii) multiple Terabytes of high resolution optical stereo imagery (World View 1-3 and Pleiades). Our data from the period 2014-2017 includes the majority of glaciers in RGI-02, specifically those ice masses in the Rocky Mountains (US and Canada), Interior Ranges in British Columbia and the Cascade Mountains (Washington). We co-registered and bias corrected the recent surface models to the Shuttle Radar Topographic Mapping (SRTM) data acquired in February, 2000. In British Columbia, our estimates of mass change are within the uncertainty estimates obtained for the period 1985-2000, but estimates from some regions indicate accelerated mass loss. Work is also underway to update glacier mass change estimates for glaciers in Washington and Montana. Finally, we use re-analysis data (ERA interim and ERA5) to evaluate the meteorological drivers that explain the temporal and spatial variability of mass change evident in our analysis.

  8. Tropical New World Glacier Recession from the mid-1980s to the mid-2000s (United States)

    Slayback, D. A.; Tucker, C. J.


    We report on the systematic retreat of all glaciers in the tropics of the New World from the mid-1980s to the mid-2000s. These glaciers comprise 99% of the world’s tropical glaciers and occur in Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, and Mexico. It was necessary to use a large quantity of Landsat satellite data (124 images), selecting multiple images for every glacier for both epochs, to minimize confusion of glacier area with snow. Change in glacier extent was combined with a digital elevation model (DEM) to provide information on the elevation and aspect of areas of glacier recession. Overall, we found glacier recession of approximately 30% over twenty years, declining from ~2500 km2 from the mid-1980s to ~1800 km2 in the mid-2000s. In addition, there was a strong association of glacier recession with elevation and aspect. We discuss these trends in relation to hypothesized climatic influences.

  9. Glaciers and hydrological changes in the Tien Shan: simulation and prediction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aizen, V B; Aizen, E M; Kuzmichonok, V A


    In this study, we estimated the current glacier state and forecast the potential impact of global and regional climate change on the glaciers and glacier runoff in the Tien Shan. General (G) and detailed (D) simulations were developed based on assessment of the Tien Shan glacier recession between 1943 and 2003 using an iterative stepwise increase in the equilibrium line altitude of 20 m. The G simulation was developed for 2777 grids each of which covered over 1000 km 2 of glacier surface and D for the 15 953 Tien Shan glaciers. Both simulations employed glacier morphometric characteristics derived from Digital Elevation Model based on remote sensing data, high resolution maps and in situ GPS validation. Simulated changes in glacier area demonstrated that a possible increase in air temperature of 1 deg. C at E-barLA must be compensated by a 100 mm increase in precipitation at the same altitude if Tien Shan glaciers are to be maintained in their current state. An increase in mean air temperature of 4 deg. C and precipitation of 1.1 times the current level could increase E-barLA by 570 m during the 21st century. Under these conditions, the number of glaciers, glacier covered area, glacier volume, and glacier runoff are predicted to be 94%, 69%, 75%, and 75% of current values. The maximum glacier runoff may reach as much as 1.25 times current levels while the minimum will likely equal zero

  10. Millennial-scale variability in Holocene aquatic productivity from Burial Lake, Arctic Alaska (United States)

    Finkenbinder, Matthew S.; Abbott, Mark B.; Stoner, Joseph S.; Ortiz, Joseph D.; Finney, Bruce P.; Dorfman, Jason M.; Stansell, Nathan D.


    Holocene records of lacustrine primary production are commonly used to reconstruct past changes in environmental and climatic conditions. While several methods exist to infer paleoproductivity trends, few studies to date have applied multiple geochemical indices in the same core sequence from Arctic lakes to evaluate their fidelity and sensitivity to specific climate variables over long (Holocene length) timescales. In this study, we evaluate sub-century to millennial-scale fluctuations in paleoproductivity over the Holocene using geochemical (biogenic opal and sedimentary chlorin) analyses of sediments from Burial Lake in the western Brooks Range, Alaska. Large fluctuations in opal and related proxies occur at millennial timescales over the last 10,000 years. We interpret the changes in opal to result from variability in diatom productivity, which is indirectly mediated by climate primarily through changes in the duration of the ice-free growing season and the availability of limiting nutrients at this oligotrophic, tundra lake. Comparison of the opal and sedimentary chlorin record, which is correlated with TOC, shows contrasting patterns on both short (century to multi-century) and relatively long (millennial) time scales. The concentration of opal far exceeds that of TOC and variations in sediment dry bulk density, driven by changes in the accumulation of opal, are likely responsible in part for the variations in sedimentary chlorin. Further, C/N ratio values indicate a mixed algal-terrestrial source of sedimentary organic matter. This result highlights the complexity in the climatic interpretation of sedimentary chlorin as an index of whole lake production, because the signal is prone to dilution/concentration from opal and also reflects a combination of aquatic and terrestrial production. Time series analysis of the productivity records indicates the presence of a significant ∼1500-yr oscillation in opal concentration, which has been found in North Atlantic

  11. Recent glacier mass balance and area changes in the Kangri Karpo Mountains from DEMs and glacier inventories

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Wu


    Full Text Available Due to the influence of the Indian monsoon, the Kangri Karpo Mountains in the south-east of the Tibetan Plateau is in the most humid and one of the most important and concentrated regions containing maritime (temperate glaciers. Glacier mass loss in the Kangri Karpo is an important contributor to global mean sea level rise, and changes run-off distribution, increasing the risk of glacial-lake outburst floods (GLOFs. Because of its inaccessibility and high labour costs, information about the Kangri Karpo glaciers is still limited. Using geodetic methods based on digital elevation models (DEMs derived from 1980 topographic maps from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM (2000 and from TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X (2014, this study has determined glacier elevation changes. Glacier area and length changes between 1980 and 2015 were derived from topographical maps and Landsat TM/ETM+/OLI images. Results show that the Kangri Karpo contained 1166 glaciers with an area of 2048.50 ± 48.65 km2 in 2015. Ice cover diminished by 679.51 ± 59.49 km2 (24.9 ± 2.2 % or 0.71 ± 0.06 % a−1 from 1980 to 2015, although nine glaciers advanced. A glacierized area of 788.28 km2, derived from DEM differencing, experienced a mean mass loss of 0.46 ± 0.08 m w.e. a−1 from 1980 to 2014. Shrinkage and mass loss accelerated significantly from 2000 to 2015 compared to 1980–2000, consistent with a warming climate.

  12. Recent glacier mass balance and area changes in the Kangri Karpo Mountains from DEMs and glacier inventories (United States)

    Wu, Kunpeng; Liu, Shiyin; Jiang, Zongli; Xu, Junli; Wei, Junfeng; Guo, Wanqin


    Due to the influence of the Indian monsoon, the Kangri Karpo Mountains in the south-east of the Tibetan Plateau is in the most humid and one of the most important and concentrated regions containing maritime (temperate) glaciers. Glacier mass loss in the Kangri Karpo is an important contributor to global mean sea level rise, and changes run-off distribution, increasing the risk of glacial-lake outburst floods (GLOFs). Because of its inaccessibility and high labour costs, information about the Kangri Karpo glaciers is still limited. Using geodetic methods based on digital elevation models (DEMs) derived from 1980 topographic maps from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) (2000) and from TerraSAR-X/TanDEM-X (2014), this study has determined glacier elevation changes. Glacier area and length changes between 1980 and 2015 were derived from topographical maps and Landsat TM/ETM+/OLI images. Results show that the Kangri Karpo contained 1166 glaciers with an area of 2048.50 ± 48.65 km2 in 2015. Ice cover diminished by 679.51 ± 59.49 km2 (24.9 ± 2.2 %) or 0.71 ± 0.06 % a-1 from 1980 to 2015, although nine glaciers advanced. A glacierized area of 788.28 km2, derived from DEM differencing, experienced a mean mass loss of 0.46 ± 0.08 m w.e. a-1 from 1980 to 2014. Shrinkage and mass loss accelerated significantly from 2000 to 2015 compared to 1980-2000, consistent with a warming climate.

  13. Very small glaciers under climate change: from the local to the global scale (United States)

    Huss, M.; Fischer, M.


    Very small glaciers (climate archive. Very small glaciers have generally shorter response times than valley glaciers and their mass balance is strongly dependent on snow redistribution processes. Worldwide glacier monitoring has focused on medium-sized to large glaciers leaving us with a relatively limited understanding of the behavior of very small glaciers. With warming climate there is an increasing concern that very small glaciers might be the first to disappear. Already in the next decades this might result in the complete deglaciation of mountain ranges with glacier equilibrium lines close to the highest peaks, such as in the Rocky Mountains, the European Alps, the Andes or parts of High Mountain Asia. In this contribution, we present a comprehensive modelling framework to assess past and future changes in very small glaciers at the mountain-range scale. Among other processes our model accounts for snow redistribution, changes in glacier geometry and dynamic changes in debris-coverage, and computes e.g. distributed mass balance, englacial temperature and proglacial runoff. Detailed glacier projections until 2060 are shown for the Swiss Alps based on new data sets, and the 21st century contribution of all very small glaciers worldwide to sea-level rise is quantified using a global model. Grid-based modelling of surface mass balance and retreat for 1133 very small glaciers in Switzerland indicates that 70% of them will completely vanish within the next 25 years. However, a few avalanche-fed glaciers at low elevation might be able to survive even substantial atmospheric warming. We find relatively high static and dynamic sensitivities for gently-sloping glaciers. At the global scale, glaciers presently smaller than 1 km2 make up for only 0.7% of total ice volume but account for 6.7% of sea-level rise contribution during the period 2015-2025. This indicates that very small glaciers are a non-negligible component of global glacier change, at least in the near

  14. Glacier dynamics over the last quarter of a century at Helheim, Kangerdlugssuaq and 14 other major Greenland outlet glaciers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. L. Bevan


    Full Text Available The Greenland ice sheet is experiencing increasing rates of mass loss, the majority of which results from changes in discharge from tidewater glaciers. Both atmospheric and ocean drivers have been implicated in these dynamic changes, but understanding the nature of the response has been hampered by the lack of measurements of glacier flow rates predating the recent period of warming. Here, using Landsat-5 data from 1985 onwards, we extend back in time the record of surface velocities and ice-front position for 16 of Greenland's fastest-flowing tidewater glaciers, and compare these to more recent data from Landsat-7 and satellite-borne synthetic-aperture radar. Climate re-analysis data and sea surface temperatures from 1982 show that since 1995 most of Greenland and its surrounding oceans have experienced significant overall warming, and a switch to a warming trend. During the period from 1985 to 1995 when Greenland and the surrounding oceans were not warming, major tidewater outlet glaciers around Greenland, including Kangerdlugssuaq and Helheim, were dynamically stable. Since the mid-1990s, glacier discharge has consistently been both greater and more variable. Together, these observations support the hypothesis that recent dynamic change is a rapid response to climate forcing. Both air and ocean temperatures in this region are predicted to continue to warm, and will therefore likely drive further change in outlet glacier discharge.

  15. Bathymetry of Torssukatak fjord and one century of glacier stability (United States)

    An, L.; Rignot, E. J.; Morlighem, M.


    Marine-terminating glaciers dominate the evolution of the Greenland Ice Sheet(GrIS) mass balance as they control 90% of the ice discharge into the ocean. Warm air temperatures thin the glaciers from the top to unground ice fronts from the bed. Warm oceans erode the submerged grounded ice, causing the grounding line to retreat. To interpret the recent and future evolution of two outlet glaciers, Sermeq Avangnardleq (AVA) and Sermeq Kujatdleq (KUJ) in central West Greenland, flowing into the ice-choked Torssukatak fjord (TOR), we need to know their ice thickness and bed topography and the fjord bathymetry. Here, we present a novel mapping of the glacier bed topography, ice thickness and sea floor bathymetry near the grounding line using high resolution airborne gravity data from AIRGrav collected in August 2012 with a helicopter platform, at 500 m spacing grid, 50 knots ground speed, 80 m ground clearance, with submilligal accuracy, i.e. higher than NASA Operation IceBridge (OIB)'s 5.2 km resolution, 290 knots, and 450 m clearance. We also employ MultiBeam Echo Sounding data (MBES) collected in the fjord since 2009. We had to wait until the summer of 2016, during Ocean Melting Greenland (OMG), to map the fjord bathymetry near the ice fronts for the first time. We constrain the 3D inversion of the gravity data with MBES in the fjord and a reconstruction of the glacier bed topography using mass conservation (MC) on land ice. The seamless topography obtained across the grounding line reveal the presence of a 300-m sill for AVA, which explains why this glacier has been stable for a century, despite changes in surface melt and ocean-induced melt and the presence of a deep fjord (800 m) in front of the glacier. For KUJ, we also reveal the presence of a wide sill (300 m depth) near the current ice front which explains its stability and the stranding of iceberg debris in front of the glacier. The results shed new light on the evolution of these glaciers and explain their

  16. Exploring the mobility of cryoconite on High-Arctic glaciers (United States)

    Irvine-Fynn, T. D.; Hodson, A. J.; Bridge, J. W.; Langford, H.; Anesio, A.; Ohlanders, N.; Newton, S.


    There has been a growing awareness of the significance of biologically active dust (cryoconite) on the energy balance of, and nutrient cycling at glacier surfaces. Moreover, researchers have estimated the mass of biological material released from glacier ice to downstream environments and ecosystems, including the melt-out of cells from emergent ice in the ablation area. However, the processes, rates and mechanisms of cryoconite mobility and transport have not been fully explored. For many smaller valley glaciers in the High-Arctic, the climate dictates only a thin (~ 1m) layer of ice at the glacier surface is at the melting point during the summer months. This surface ice is commonly characterized by an increased porosity in response to incident energy and hydraulic conditions, and has been termed the “weathering crust”. The presence of cryoconite, with its higher radiation absorption, exacerbates the weathering crust development. Thus, crucially, the transport of cryoconite is not confined to simply a ‘smooth’ ice surface, but rather also includes mobility in the near-surface ice matrix. Here, we present initial results from investigations of cryoconite transport at Midtre Lovénbreen and Longyearbreen, two north-facing valley glaciers in Svalbard (Norway). Using time-lapse imagery, we explore the transport rates of cryoconite on a glacier surface and consider the associations between mobility and meteorological conditions. Results suggest some disparity between micro-, local- and plot-scale observations of cryoconite transport: the differences imply controlling influences of cryoconite volume, ice surface topography and ice structure. While to examine the relative volumes of cryoconite exported from the glacier surface by supraglacial streams we employ flow cytometry, using SYBR-Green-II staining to identify the biological component of the suspended load. Preliminary comparisons between shallow (1m) ice cores and in-stream concentrations suggest

  17. Distributed ice thickness and glacier volume in southern South America (United States)

    Carrivick, Jonathan L.; Davies, Bethan J.; James, William H. M.; Quincey, Duncan J.; Glasser, Neil F.


    South American glaciers, including those in Patagonia, presently contribute the largest amount of meltwater to sea level rise per unit glacier area in the world. Yet understanding of the mechanisms behind the associated glacier mass balance changes remains unquantified partly because models are hindered by a lack of knowledge of subglacial topography. This study applied a perfect-plasticity model along glacier centre-lines to derive a first-order estimate of ice thickness and then interpolated these thickness estimates across glacier areas. This produced the first complete coverage of distributed ice thickness, bed topography and volume for 617 glaciers between 41°S and 55°S and in 24 major glacier regions. Maximum modelled ice thicknesses reach 1631 m ± 179 m in the South Patagonian Icefield (SPI), 1315 m ± 145 m in the North Patagonian Icefield (NPI) and 936 m ± 103 m in Cordillera Darwin. The total modelled volume of ice is 1234.6 km3 ± 246.8 km3 for the NPI, 4326.6 km3 ± 865.2 km3 for the SPI and 151.9 km3 ± 30.38 km3 for Cordillera Darwin. The total volume was modelled to be 5955 km3 ± 1191 km3, which equates to 5458.3 Gt ± 1091.6 Gt ice and to 15.08 mm ± 3.01 mm sea level equivalent (SLE). However, a total area of 655 km2 contains ice below sea level and there are 282 individual overdeepenings with a mean depth of 38 m and a total volume if filled with water to the brim of 102 km3. Adjusting the potential SLE for the ice volume below sea level and for the maximum potential storage of meltwater in these overdeepenings produces a maximum potential sea level rise (SLR) of 14.71 mm ± 2.94 mm. We provide a calculation of the present ice volume per major river catchment and we discuss likely changes to southern South America glaciers in the future. The ice thickness and subglacial topography modelled by this study will facilitate future studies of ice dynamics and glacier isostatic adjustment, and will be important for projecting water resources and

  18. Accuracy of three-dimensional glacier surface volocities derived from radar interfeometry and ice-soundin radar measurements

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mohr, Johan Jacob; Reeh, Niels; Madsen, Søren Nørvang


    We present a method for analyzing the errors involved in measuring three-dimensional glacier velocities with interferometric radar. We address the surface-parallel flow assumption and an augmented approach with a flux-divergence (FD) term. The errors in an interferometric ERS-1/-2 satellite radar...... dataset with ascending- and descending-orbit data covering Storstrommen glacier, northeast Greenland, are assessed. The FD error assessment is carried out on airborne 60 MHz ice-sounding radar data from the same area. A simple model of an interferometric radar system is developed and analyzed. The error...... sources considered include phase noise, atmospheric distortions, baseline calibration errors, a dry snow layer, and the stationary-flow assumption used in differential interferometry. The additional error sources in the analysis of FD errors are noise, bias and unknown variations of the ice thickness...

  19. Determining and Interpreting Detailed Ice Surface Elevation Changes of the Glaciers in Upernavik Isstrøm, Northwest Greenland, 1985-2016 (United States)

    Wendler, L.; Csatho, B. M.; Schenk, A. F.


    highlights the importance of other factors, such as variations in calving rates and lateral drag. The study produced improved surface elevation change histories of the Upernavik glaciers that are the most detailed and accurate to date and will be important for future numerical modeling studies of outlet glacier dynamic processes.

  20. 90-year-old firn air from Styx glacier, East Antarctica (United States)

    Jang, Y.; Ahn, J.; Buizert, C.; Lee, H. G.; Hong, S.; Han, Y.; Jun, S. J.; Hur, S. D.


    Firn is the upper part of the glacier that has not yet been completely changed to the ice. In this layer, firn air can move through the open pores and be pumped for sampling. We obtained firn air and ice cores from Styx glacier (73°51'95″ S, 163°41'217″ E, 1623m asl.), East Antarctica during 2014-2015. The Styx glacier is located near coast, and has an accumulation rate of 0.13 Mgm-2y-1 with a mean annual temperature of -31.7 °. We found that the lock-in depth (depth where gas diffusion starts to stop, "LID") is 52.4 m and bubble close-off depth (the depth to the snow-ice transition perfectly, "COD") is 65.1 m. Therefore lock-in zone (between LID and COD, "LIZ") is 52.4 - 65.1 m. Concentrations of greenhouse gases (CO2, CH4, n=13) in the firn air were analyzed at US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and 15N of N2 was measured at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO). We find that the firn air ages are up to about 90 years, the oldest firn air ages observed among coastal glaciers. In order to better understand physical properties and chemical composition, methane concentration and total air content of the closed bubbles in the LIZ (3 cm resolution, n=124) were analyzed by a wet extraction method at Seoul National University. The CH4 concentration and total air content show large variations in cm-scale depth intervals, and they are anti-correlated with each other. The CH4 concentration changes in a few cm corresponds to up to 40 years in CH4 age. We also applied Centre for Ice and Climate (CIC) 1-dimensional diffusion model and simulated greenhouse gas concentration profiles to quantitatively understand how the air moves in the Styx firn column. We hypothesize that density variations in the firn may increase thickness of LIZ and consequently increase of firn gas ages.

  1. Holocene sea levels of Visakhapatnam shelf, east coast of India

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Rao, K.M.; Rao, T.C.S.

    The Holocene sea level changes in the shelf areas off Visakhapatnam was studied from sediment distribution pattern and shallow seismic profiling. Morphological features on the shelf indicate a Late Pleistocene regression down to about -130 m below...

  2. Recent glacier retreat and climate trends in Cordillera Huaytapallana, Peru (United States)

    López-Moreno, J. I.; Fontaneda, S.; Bazo, J.; Revuelto, J.; Azorin-Molina, C.; Valero-Garcés, B.; Morán-Tejeda, E.; Vicente-Serrano, S. M.; Zubieta, R.; Alejo-Cochachín, J.


    We analyzed 19 annual Landsat Thematic Mapper images from 1984 to 2011 to determine changes of the glaciated surface and snow line elevation in six mountain areas of the Cordillera Huaytapallana range in Peru. In contrast to other Peruvian mountains, glacier retreat in these mountains has been poorly documented, even though this is a heavily glaciated area. These glaciers are the main source of water for the surrounding lowlands, and melting of these glaciers has triggered several outburst floods. During the 28-year study period, there was a 55% decrease in the surface covered by glaciers and the snowline moved upward in different regions by 93 to 157 m. Moreover, several new lakes formed in the recently deglaciated areas. There was an increase in precipitation during the wet season (October-April) over the 28-year study period. The significant increase in maximum temperatures may be related to the significant glacier retreat in the study area. There were significant differences in the wet season temperatures during El Niño (warmer) and La Niña (colder) years. Although La Niña years were generally more humid than El Niño years, these differences were not statistically significant. Thus, glaciers tended to retreat at a high rate during El Niño years, but tended to be stable or increase during La Niña years, although there were some notable deviations from this general pattern. Climate simulations for 2021 to 2050, based on the most optimistic assumptions of greenhouse gas concentrations, forecast a continuation of climate warming at the same rate as documented here. Such changes in temperature might lead to a critical situation for the glaciers of the Cordillera Huaytapallana, and may significantly impact the water resources, ecology, and natural hazards of the surrounding areas.

  3. Sensitivity of very small glaciers in the Swiss Alps to future climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias eHuss


    Full Text Available Very small glaciers (<0.5 km2 account for more than 80% of the total number of glaciers in mid- to low-latitude mountain ranges. Although their total area and volume is small compared to larger glaciers, they are a relevant component of the cryosphere, contributing to landscape formation, local hydrology and sea-level rise. Worldwide glacier monitoring mostly focuses on medium-sized to large glaciers leaving us with a limited understanding of the response of dwarf glaciers to climate change. In this study, we present a comprehensive modeling framework to assess past and future changes of very small glaciers at the mountain-range scale. Among other processes our model accounts for snow redistribution, changes in glacier geometry and the time-varying effect of supraglacial debris. It computes the mass balance distribution, the englacial temperature regime and proglacial runoff. The evolution of 1,133 individual glaciers in the Swiss Alps is modeled in detail until 2060 based on new distributed data sets. Our results indicate that 52% of all very small glaciers in Switzerland will completely disappear within the next 25 years. However, a few avalanche-fed glaciers at low elevation might be able to survive even substantial atmospheric warming. We find highly variable sensitivities of very small glaciers to air temperature change, with gently-sloping, low-elevation, and debris-covered glaciers being most sensitive.

  4. Holocene vegetation history from fossil rodent middens near Arequipa, Peru (United States)

    Holmgren, C.A.; Betancourt, J.L.; Rylander, K.A.; Roque, J.; Tovar, O.; Zeballos, H.; Linares, E.; Quade, Jay


    Rodent (Abrocoma, Lagidium, Phyllotis) middens collected from 2350 to 2750 m elevation near Arequipa, Peru (16??S), provide an ???9600-yr vegetation history of the northern Atacama Desert, based on identification of >50 species of plant macrofossils. These midden floras show considerable stability throughout the Holocene, with slightly more mesophytic plant assemblages in the middle Holocene. Unlike the southwestern United States, rodent middens of mid-Holocene age are common. In the Arequipa area, the midden record does not reflect any effects of a mid-Holocene mega drought proposed from the extreme lowstand (100 m below modern levels, >6000 to 3500 yr B.P.) of Lake Titicaca, only 200 km east of Arequipa. This is perhaps not surprising, given other evidence for wetter summers on the Pacific slope of the Andes during the middle Holocene as well as the poor correlation of summer rainfall among modern weather stations in the central AndesAtacama Desert. The apparent difference in paleoclimatic reconstructions suggests that it is premature to relate changes observed during the Holocene to changes in El Nin??o Southern Oscillation modes. ?? 2001 University of Washington.

  5. Holocene record of precipitation seasonality from lake calcite δ18O in the central Rocky Mountains, United States (United States)

    Anderson, Lesleigh


    A context for recent hydroclimatic extremes and variability is provided by a ~10 k.y. sediment carbonate oxygen isotope (??18O) record at 5-100 yr resolution from Bison Lake, 3255 m above sea level, in northwestern Colorado (United States). Winter precipitation is the primary water source for the alpine headwater lake in the Upper Colorado River Basin and lake water ??18O measurements reflect seasonal variations in precipitation ??18O. Holocene lake water ??18O variations are inferred from endogenic sedimentary calcite ??18O based on comparisons with historic watershed discharge records and tree-ring reconstructions. Drought periods (i.e., drier winters and/or a more rain-dominated seasonal precipitation balance) generally correspond with higher calcite ??18O values, and vice-versa. Early to middle Holocene ??18O values are higher, implying a rain-dominated seasonal precipitation balance. Lower, more variable ??18O values after ca. 3500 yr ago indicate a snow-dominated but more seasonally variable precipitation balance. The middle to late Holocene ??18O record corresponds with records of El Ni??o Southern Oscillation intensification that supports a teleconnection between Rocky Mountain climate and North Pacific sea-surface temperatures at decade to century time scales. ?? 2011 Geological Society of America.

  6. Estimating the snow water equivalent on a glacierized high elevation site (Forni Glacier, Italy) (United States)

    Senese, Antonella; Maugeri, Maurizio; Meraldi, Eraldo; Verza, Gian Pietro; Azzoni, Roberto Sergio; Compostella, Chiara; Diolaiuti, Guglielmina


    We present and compare 11 years of snow data (snow depth and snow water equivalent, SWE) measured by an automatic weather station (AWS) and corroborated by data from field campaigns on the Forni Glacier in Italy. The aim of the analysis is to estimate the SWE of new snowfall and the annual SWE peak based on the average density of the new snow at the site (corresponding to the snowfall during the standard observation period of 24 h) and automated snow depth measurements. The results indicate that the daily SR50 sonic ranger measurements and the available snow pit data can be used to estimate the mean new snow density value at the site, with an error of ±6 kg m-3. Once the new snow density is known, the sonic ranger makes it possible to derive SWE values with an RMSE of 45 mm water equivalent (if compared with snow pillow measurements), which turns out to be about 8 % of the total SWE yearly average. Therefore, the methodology we present is interesting for remote locations such as glaciers or high alpine regions, as it makes it possible to estimate the total SWE using a relatively inexpensive, low-power, low-maintenance, and reliable instrument such as the sonic ranger.

  7. Asynchronous behavior of the Antarctic Ice Sheet and local glaciers during and since Termination 1, Salmon Valley, Antarctica (United States)

    Jackson, Margaret S.; Hall, Brenda L.; Denton, George H.


    The stability of the Antarctic Ice Sheet under future warming remains an open question with broad implications for sea-level prediction and adaptation. In particular, knowledge of whether the ice sheet has the capacity for rapid drawdown or collapse, or whether it can remain stable during periods of warming, is essential for predicting its future behavior. Here we use 55 radiocarbon dates, coupled with geomorphologic mapping, to reconstruct the timing of changes in ice extent and elevation during the last ice-age termination in Salmon Valley, adjacent to McMurdo Sound in the western Ross Sea Embayment. Results indicate that a grounded ice sheet in the Ross Sea Embayment achieved its maximum elevation and extent along the headlands of Salmon Valley at ∼18,000 yr BP, during a period of increasing temperatures and accumulation over the Antarctic continent. This ice remained at or near its maximum on the headlands near the valley mouth until after ∼14,000 yr BP. Removal of grounded Ross Sea ice from Salmon Valley was complete shortly after ∼7900 yr BP, indicating that the grounding line had retreated through southern McMurdo Sound by that time. We suggest the primary driver of Ross Sea ice removal from McMurdo Sound was marine-based, either through basal melting or calving due to sea-level rise. When combined with regional data, the Salmon Valley record suggests that this sector of the Antarctic Ice Sheet did not contribute in a significant way to deglacial meltwater pulses, such as meltwater pulse 1a. In contrast to the Ross Sea ice, our work also shows that local, independent alpine glaciers in Salmon Valley have advanced through the Holocene. Land-terminating glaciers such as these elsewhere in the region show a similar pattern, and may reflect the continued influence of increased accumulation following the termination of the last ice age.

  8. Upper Holocene in a profile:tectonic depression of Conlara-Sierra de San Luis, San Luis, Argentina

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strasser, E.; Chiesa, J.


    The characteristics of three column profiles belonging to eolic sediments, assignated to Upper Holocene of the Depression of Conlara and oriental edge of San Luis range, comprising loessic materials and sandy loessoides, associated to aluvio-eolic and pedogenetic levels are texturally described. Lineal graphics of expression are used to visualize the textual variations according to the deph, those graphics are built according to the curve of frequency accumulated of the distribution of the size, using the parameters of rank in phi (Q) intervals and the half diameter expressed in microns. The interpretation of the succession in ecuatorial direction allows the inferences of the decrease of the size of grain from the planicie (on the east) towards the mountain region (on the west). The values of parameters of rank and statistiral parameters are presented, of all the succession although it is proposed that the Upper Holocene corresponds to the two upper meters [es

  9. Discontinuity surfaces and event stratigraphy of Okha Shell Limestone Member: Implications for Holocene sea level changes, western India (United States)

    Bhonde, Uday; Desai, Bhawanisingh G.


    The Okha Shell Limestone Member of Chaya Formation is the coarse grained, shell rich deposit commonly recognized as the beach rocks. It has been age bracketed between Late Pleistocene and Holocene. Late Quaternary sea level changes have been studied with beach rocks along the Saurashtra coastal region. The present study has been carried out in the Okhamandal area of the Saurashtra peninsula especially on the Okha Shell Limestone Member as exposed at various locations along the coast from north to south. Temporal and spatial correlations of the observations have revealed three events in the Okha Shell Limestone Member of Chaya Formation that are correlated laterally. The events show depositional breaks represented by discontinuity surfaces, the taphofacies varieties and ichnological variations. The present study in the context of available geochrnological data of the region suggests a prominent depositional break representing low sea level stand (regression) during an Early Holocene during the deposition of Okha Shell Limestone Member.

  10. Glacier mass balance in high-arctic areas with anomalous gravity (United States)

    Sharov, A.; Rieser, D.; Nikolskiy, D.


    All known glaciological models describing the evolution of Arctic land- and sea-ice masses in changing climate treat the Earth's gravity as horizontally constant, but it isn't. In the High Arctic, the strength of the gravitational field varies considerably across even short distances under the influence of a density gradient, and the magnitude of free air gravity anomalies attains 100 mGal and more. On long-term base, instantaneous deviations of gravity can have a noticeable effect on the regime and mass budget of glaciological objects. At best, the gravity-induced component of ice mass variations can be determined on topographically smooth, open and steady surfaces, like those of arctic planes, regular ice caps and landfast sea ice. The present research is devoted to studying gravity-driven impacts on glacier mass balance in the outer periphery of four Eurasian shelf seas with a very cold, dry climate and rather episodic character of winter precipitation. As main study objects we had chosen a dozen Russia's northernmost insular ice caps, tens to hundreds of square kilometres in extent, situated in a close vicinity of strong gravity anomalies and surrounded with extensive fields of fast and/or drift ice for most of the year. The supposition about gravitational forcing on glacioclimatic settings in the study region is based on the results of quantitative comparison and joint interpretation of existing glacier change maps and available data on the Arctic gravity field and solid precipitation. The overall mapping of medium-term (from decadal to half-centennial) changes in glacier volumes and quantification of mass balance characteristics in the study region was performed by comparing reference elevation models of study glaciers derived from Russian topographic maps 1:200,000 (CI = 20 or 40 m) representing the glacier state as in the 1950s-1980s with modern elevation data obtained from satellite radar interferometry and lidar altimetry. Free-air gravity anomalies were

  11. Changing Hydrology in Glacier-fed High Altitude Andean Peatbogs (United States)

    Slayback, D. A.; Yager, K.; Baraer, M.; Mohr, K. I.; Argollo, J.; Wigmore, O.; Meneses, R. I.; Mark, B. G.


    Montane peatbogs in the glacierized Andean highlands of Peru and Bolivia provide critical forage for camelids (llama and alpaca) in regionally extensive pastoral agriculture systems. During the long dry season, these wetlands often provide the only available green forage. A key question for the future of these peatbog systems, and the livelihoods they support, is the impact of climate change and glacier recession on their hydrology, and thus forage production. We have already documented substantial regional glacier recession, of, on average, approximately 30% of surface area over the past two decades. As glaciers begin to retreat under climate change, there is initially a period of increased meltwater outflow, culminating in a period of "peak water", and followed by a continual decline in outflows. Based on previous work, we know that some glaciers in the region have already passed peak water conditions, and are now declining. To better understand the impacts of these processes on peatbog hydrology and productivity, we have begun collecting a variety of surface data at several study sites in both Bolivia and Peru. These include precipitation, stream flow, water levels, water chemistry and isotope analyses, and peatbog biodiversity and biomass. These measurements will be used in conjunction with a regional model driven by satellite data to predict likely future impacts. We will present the results from these initial surface measurements, and an overview of satellite datasets to be used in the regional model.

  12. Holocene millennial to centennial scale carbonate cycles (leeward margin, Great Bahama Bank) (United States)

    Roth, S.; Reijmer, J. J. G.


    The main research topic of this project is the evaluation of Holocene to Recent climatic variability and the impact on shallow-water sediment production of carbonate platforms. A 38m long sediment core (MD992201) was analyzed, obtained from 290m water depth on the leeward margin of Great Bahama Bank. Fourteen Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) dates determined a core bottom age of 7,230 years BP and permitted the construction of a precise time frame. With a sampling interval of 5cm, a decadal time resolution could be achieved. Sedimentation rates varied between 3 to 14m/kyr. Carbonate content ranges from 96 to almost 100wt%, most of which is aragonite (83-92wt%). High Magnesium Calcite (HMC) makes up the second major fraction with 2-9wt%, while Low Magnesium Calcite occurs with minor percentages (0.5-4wt%). Singular Spectrum Analysis (SSA) of the aragonitic carbonate phase showed two different trends and two primary oscillatory signals. Aragonite production on Great Bahama Bank started at 7,230yr BP when the Holocene sea-level rise flooded the shallow platform top. The first eigenvector captures this long-term trend extending over the entire Mid to Late Holocene succession displaying the Holocene sea-level fluctuations. The second trend indicates millennial scale variations, which can be attributed to a combination of geomagnetic shielding and solar parameters. The two quasi-periodic signals show wavelengths of 400-600 years and approx. 210 years. These oscillations are interpreted in terms of instabilities of the thermohaline circulation and solar parameters, respectively. The oscillatory aragonite signals and oxygen isotope derived temperatures (planktonic foraminifers) agree with northern hemisphere temperature changes (e.g. Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age) and the delta-14C record of tree rings (e.g. Oort to Dalton solar minima). This study shows that carbonate platform systems not only respond to sea-level variations but also are precise recorders of

  13. Quantifying the effects of land use and climate on Holocene vegetation in Europe (United States)

    Marquer, Laurent; Gaillard, Marie-José; Sugita, Shinya; Poska, Anneli; Trondman, Anna-Kari; Mazier, Florence; Nielsen, Anne Birgitte; Fyfe, Ralph M.; Jönsson, Anna Maria; Smith, Benjamin; Kaplan, Jed O.; Alenius, Teija; Birks, H. John B.; Bjune, Anne E.; Christiansen, Jörg; Dodson, John; Edwards, Kevin J.; Giesecke, Thomas; Herzschuh, Ulrike; Kangur, Mihkel; Koff, Tiiu; Latałowa, Małgorzata; Lechterbeck, Jutta; Olofsson, Jörgen; Seppä, Heikki


    Early agriculture can be detected in palaeovegetation records, but quantification of the relative importance of climate and land use in influencing regional vegetation composition since the onset of agriculture is a topic that is rarely addressed. We present a novel approach that combines pollen-based REVEALS estimates of plant cover with climate, anthropogenic land-cover and dynamic vegetation modelling results. This is used to quantify the relative impacts of land use and climate on Holocene vegetation at a sub-continental scale, i.e. northern and western Europe north of the Alps. We use redundancy analysis and variation partitioning to quantify the percentage of variation in vegetation composition explained by the climate and land-use variables, and Monte Carlo permutation tests to assess the statistical significance of each variable. We further use a similarity index to combine pollen-based REVEALS estimates with climate-driven dynamic vegetation modelling results. The overall results indicate that climate is the major driver of vegetation when the Holocene is considered as a whole and at the sub-continental scale, although land use is important regionally. Four critical phases of land-use effects on vegetation are identified. The first phase (from 7000 to 6500 BP) corresponds to the early impacts on vegetation of farming and Neolithic forest clearance and to the dominance of climate as a driver of vegetation change. During the second phase (from 4500 to 4000 BP), land use becomes a major control of vegetation. Climate is still the principal driver, although its influence decreases gradually. The third phase (from 2000 to 1500 BP) is characterised by the continued role of climate on vegetation as a consequence of late-Holocene climate shifts and specific climate events that influence vegetation as well as land use. The last phase (from 500 to 350 BP) shows an acceleration of vegetation changes, in particular during the last century, caused by new farming

  14. Rockfalls and glacier contraction: Cirque de Troumouse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gellatly, Anne F.


    Full Text Available The incidence of rockfalls within the Cirque de Troumouse appears to have been triggered by ice wastage and the resultant geomorphological pattern of rockfall deposits affords an insight into the migration of headwall weathering zones. Observations of the rockfall deposits indicate clear geological controls which maybe directly related to the exposure of the headwall zone during phases of glacier wastage

    [es] Las caldas de piedras en el Circo de Troumouse parecen haber sido desencadenadas por la acción del hielo, y el modelo geomorfológico de depósitos de bloques resultante proporciona una idea sobre la migración de las zonas de meteorización en las paredes. Las observaciones de tales depósitos indican la existencia de claros controles geológicos que pueden relacionarse directamente con la exposición de la pared durante las fases de fusión glaciar.
    [fr] Les chutes des pierres dans le cirque de Troumouse paraissent avoir été déclenchées par l'action de la glace, et le modèle géomorphologique des dépôts de blocs résultant donne une idée de la migration des zones de météorisation dans les parois. Les observations de ces dépôts indiquent l'existence de contrôles géologiques très clairs qui peuvent être directement liés à l'exposition de la paroi durant les phases de fusion glaciaire.

  15. Glacier melting during lava dome growth at Nevado de Toluca volcano (Mexico): Evidences of a major threat before main eruptive phases at ice-caped volcanoes (United States)

    Capra, L.; Roverato, M.; Groppelli, G.; Caballero, L.; Sulpizio, R.; Norini, G.


    Nevado de Toluca volcano is one of the largest stratovolcanoes in the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. During Late Pleistocene its activity was characterized by large dome growth and subsequent collapse emplacing large block and ash flow deposits, intercalated by Plinian eruptions. Morphological and paleoclimate studies at Nevado de Toluca and the surrounding area evidenced that the volcano was affected by extensive glaciation during Late Pleistocene and Holocene. During the older recognized glacial period (27-60 ka, MIS 3), the glacier was disturbed by the intense magmatic and hydrothermal activity related to two dome extrusion episodes (at 37 ka and 28 ka). Glacier reconstruction indicates maximum ice thickness of 90 m along main valleys, as at the Cano ravines, the major glacial valley on the northern slope of the volcano. Along this ravine, both 37 and 28 ka block-and-ash deposits are exposed, and they directly overlay a fluviatile sequence, up to 40 m-thick, which 14C ages clearly indicate that their emplacement occurred just before the dome collapsed. These evidences point to a clear interaction between the growing dome and its hydrothermal system with the glacier. During dome growth, a large amount of melting water was released along major glacial valleys forming thick fluvioglacial sequences that were subsequently covered by the block-and-ash flow deposits generated by the collapse of the growing dome. Even though this scenario is no longer possible at the Nevado de Toluca volcano, the data presented here indicate that special attention should be paid to the possible inundation areas from fluviatile/lahar activity prior to the main magmatic eruption at ice-capped volcanoes.

  16. Tracing biogeochemical subsidies from glacier runoff into Alaska's coastal marine food webs (United States)

    Arimitsu, Mayumi L.; Hobson, Keith A.; Webber, D'Arcy N.; Piatt, John F.; Hood, Eran W.; Fellman, Jason B.


    Nearly half of the freshwater discharge into the Gulf of Alaska originates from landscapes draining glacier runoff, but the influence of the influx of riverine organic matter on the trophodynamics of coastal marine food webs is not well understood. We quantified the ecological impact of riverine organic matter subsidies to glacier-marine habitats by developing a multi-trophic level Bayesian three-isotope mixing model. We utilized large gradients in stable (δ13C, δ15N, δ2H) and radiogenic (Δ14C) isotopes that trace riverine and marine organic matter sources as they are passed from lower to higher trophic levels in glacial-marine habitats. We also compared isotope ratios between glacial-marine and more oceanic habitats. Based on isotopic measurements of potential baseline sources, ambient water and tissues of marine consumers, estimates of the riverine organic matter source contribution to upper trophic-level species including fish and seabirds ranged from 12% to 44%. Variability in resource use among similar taxa corresponded to variation in species distribution and life histories. For example, riverine organic matter assimilation by the glacier-nesting seabirds Kittlitz's murrelet (Brachyramphus brevirostris) was greater than that of the forest-nesting marbled murrelet (B. marmoratus). The particulate and dissolved organic carbon in glacial runoff and near surface coastal waters was aged (12100–1500 years BP 14C-age) but dissolved inorganic carbon and biota in coastal waters were young (530 years BP 14C-age to modern). Thus terrestrial-derived subsidies in marine food webs were primarily composed of young organic matter sources released from glacier ecosystems and their surrounding watersheds. Stable isotope compositions also revealed a divergence in food web structure between glacial-marine and oceanic sites. This work demonstrates linkages between terrestrial and marine ecosystems, and facilitates a greater understanding of how climate-driven changes

  17. Impacts of glacier recession and declining meltwater on mountain societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carey, Mark; Molden, Olivia C.; Rasmussen, Mattias Borg


    . It identifies four main areas of existing research: (1) socioeconomic impacts; (2) hydropower; (3) agriculture, irrigation, and food security; and (4) cultural impacts. The article also suggests paths forward for social sciences, humanities, and natural sciences research that could more accurately detect......, including irrigation, agriculture, hydropower, potable water, livelihoods, recreation, spirituality, and demography. Unfortunately, research focusing on the human impacts of glacier runoff variability in mountain regions remains limited, and studies often rely on assumptions rather than concrete evidence...... about the effects of shrinking glaciers on mountain hydrology and societies. This article provides a systematic review of international research on human impacts of glacier meltwater variability in mountain ranges worldwide, including the Andes, Alps, greater Himalayan region, Cascades, and Alaska...

  18. Supraglacial Ponds Regulate Runoff From Himalayan Debris-Covered Glaciers (United States)

    Irvine-Fynn, Tristram D. L.; Porter, Philip R.; Rowan, Ann V.; Quincey, Duncan J.; Gibson, Morgan J.; Bridge, Jonathan W.; Watson, C. Scott; Hubbard, Alun; Glasser, Neil F.


    Meltwater and runoff from glaciers in High Mountain Asia is a vital freshwater resource for one-fifth of the Earth's population. Between 13% and 36% of the region's glacierized areas exhibit surface debris cover and associated supraglacial ponds whose hydrological buffering roles remain unconstrained. We present a high-resolution meltwater hydrograph from the extensively debris-covered Khumbu Glacier, Nepal, spanning a 7 month period in 2014. Supraglacial ponds and accompanying debris cover modulate proglacial discharge by acting as transient and evolving reservoirs. Diurnally, the supraglacial pond system may store >23% of observed mean daily discharge, with mean recession constants ranging from 31 to 108 h. Given projections of increased debris cover and supraglacial pond extent across High Mountain Asia, we conclude that runoff regimes may become progressively buffered by the presence of supraglacial reservoirs. Incorporation of these processes is critical to improve predictions of the region's freshwater resource availability and cascading environmental effects downstream.

  19. Middle Holocene Organic Carbon and Biomarker Records from the South Yellow Sea: Relationship to the East Asian Monsoon (United States)

    Zou, Liang; Hu, Bangqi; Li, Jun; Dou, Yanguang; Xie, Luhua; Dong, Liang


    The East Asian monsoon system influences the sedimentation and transport of organic matter in East Asian marginal seas that is derived from both terrestrial and marine sources. In this study, we determined organic carbon (OC) isotope values, concentrations of marine biomarkers, and levels of OC and total nitrogen (TN) in core YSC-1 from the central South Yellow Sea (SYS). Our objectives were to trace the sources of OC and variations in palaeoproductivity since the middle Holocene, and their relationships with the East Asian monsoon system. The relative contributions of terrestrial versus marine organic matter in core sediments were estimated using a two-end-member mixing model of OC isotopes. Results show that marine organic matter has been the main sediment constituent since the middle Holocene. The variation of terrestrial organic carbon concentration (OCter) is similar to