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Glacial lake outburst flooding in Bagrot Valley – new threat due to climate change

Dostdar Hussain, Muhammad Raza, Ghulam Rasul, Muhammad Ismail

Integrated Mountain Area Research Center KIU Gilgit, Baltistan, Pakistan

Department of Computer Science KIU Gilgit, Baltistan, Pakistan

Pakistan Meteorological Department, Islamabad, Pakistan

Key words: Climate Change, Glacier, GLOF, GB, Remote sensing.

Abstract

Grinnell_Lake_Glacier_National_Park_MontanaThe receding glaciers in northern part of Pakistan are one of the most reliable evidences of the changing global climate. The melting of glaciers in this high mountainous terrain can caused to increase the risk of glacier related hazards. One of these risks is Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs). As glaciers retreat, glacial lakes form behind moraine or ice dams. These dams are comparatively weak and can break suddenly as a result, discharge huge volume of water which carried mud, debris and boulders. Such outbursts become catastrophic to downstream infrastructure and community as millions of cubic water release in sudden. Glacier thinning and retreat in the Bagrot valley has resulted in the formation of new glacial lakes and the enlargement of existing ones due to the accumulation of glacier melt water. A study has been conducted on the Bagrot valley regarding the impact of climate change on GLOF potential. Furthermore GLOF inventory for this region have been developed by using RS/GIS technology. Some lake which are potential dangerous are keep under consideration. The result shows that some of the lakes have grown in size and vulnerable to GLOF. Increase in temperature and precipitation may also triggered the GLOF event in this valley. Linear Trend Model for temperature and precipitation have been developed for the valley to analysis the temperature and precipitation impact on the GLOF event.

Source: http://www.innspub.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/JBES-Vol6No3-p207-212.pdf

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