Researchers believe climate change is responsible for an avalanche in Tibet that claimed nine lives and injured hundreds of others. Phys.org.com’s Pam Frost Gorder reports that an international team of scientists announced that conclusion in an analysis of the July, 2016, incident published in the December 9, 2016, issue of the Journal of Glaciology.
“On July 17, more than 70 million tons of ice broke off from the Aru glacier in the mountains of western Tibet and tumbled into a valley below, taking the lives of nine nomadic yak herders living there,” Gorder said. “To perform a kind of forensic analysis of the avalanche, researchers from the Chinese Academy of Sciences joined with two glaciologists from The Ohio State University: Lonnie Thompson, Distinguished University Professor in the School of Earth Sciences and research scientist at the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center (BPCRC), and Ellen Mosley-Thompson, Distinguished University Professor in Geography and director of BPCRC.”
“Glacial collapse is unprecedented in western Tibet, which for decades has resisted the effects of climate change while glaciers in southern and eastern Tibet have melted at an accelerating rate. Increased snowfall has even led to the expansion of some glaciers in western Tibet—and the extra snowfall likely played some role in the avalanche by creating additional meltwater, said Lide Tian, a glaciologist at the Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and lead author of the paper.[i] Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2016-12-climate-deadly-avalanche-tibet.html#jCp
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[i] “Climate change likely caused deadly 2016 avalanche in Tibet, researchers say,” by Pam Frost Gorder Phys.org, December 9, 2016 http://phys.org/news/2016-12-climate-deadly-avalanche-tibet.html?utm_source=nwletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=daily-nwletter
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