17 Jul '12, 4pm

Majority of Tibetan Plateau Glaciers Retreating Increasingly Rapidly

Majority of Tibetan Plateau Glaciers Retreating Increasingly Rapidly

“Temperature rise is important,” says Yao [Tandong]. “But its effects on glaciers also depend on climate regimes.” In places dominated by the westerlies, such as the Karakoram and the Pamir plateau, glaciers gain their mass mostly from winter snow, and so are less affected by warming because temperatures in winter are still below zero. In the eastern and central Himalayas, however, it snows mainly during monsoon season, and a slight increase in summer temperatures can affect glaciers drastically.In the past few decades, the Indian monsoon has been getting weaker. By contrast, the westerlies are getting stronger. “This explains why most glaciers that are either stable or advancing are in the Karakoram or the Pamir plateau,” says Yao. (Nature )

Full article: http://www.treehugger.com/climate-change/majority-tibetan...

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