The team of researchers observed that the Himalayan glaciers have lost the ice cover ten times more quickly over the last few decades than on average since the last major glacier expansion 400-700 years ago, a period known as the Little Ice Age, a study has said. The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports, also shows that Himalayan glaciers are shrinking far more rapidly than glaciers in other parts of the world.
The study led by the team and researchers at the University Of Leeds, UK, made a reconstruction of the size and ice surfaces of 14,798 Himalayan glaciers during the Little Ice Age. They calculated that the glaciers have lost around 40 percent of their area – shrinking from a peak of 28,000 square kilometers to around 19,600 square kilometers today.
It is an alarming situation that accelerating melting of the glaciers along the Himalayan region which threatens the water supply to millions of people in the Asian Continent. The Himalayan range is the home to the world’s third-largest glacier ice, after Antarctica and the Arctic, and is often referred to as “The Third Pole”.
The water released through melting has raised the sea level across the world between 0.92 mm and 1.38 mm, the team predicts, the release said (researchers from Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, India)
“While we must act urgently to reduce and mitigate the impact of human-made climate change on the glaciers and meltwater-fed rivers, the modelling of that impact on glaciers must also take account of the role of factors such as lakes and debris,” Carrivick added.
The article was published by ‘Nature.com’ under ‘Scientific Report‘ dated 20th December 2021