Global Warming: Gangotri glacier is shrinking

As per report titled, ‘Estimation of retreat rate of Gangotri glacier’, the Gangotri glacier is receding like other glaciers in the Himalayas and its volume and size is shrinking between Gaumukh and Bhojbasa. The appraisal of retreat measured by using rapid static and kinematics GPS survey. The study is conducted by scientists from G.B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development in Almora.

Excerpts of the report – ‘Estimation of retreat rate of Gangotri glacier’
  • The retreat in the past decade was higher than it is in this decade. Still, there is some disintegration in the upper regions of the glacier which shows that some tectonic activities are going on in the region. This might be alarming but it is under study.
  • From year 2000 onwards, the average rate of retreat of the glacier per year has about 12 to 13 m..
  • Global warming is also the one of the factor for glacial retreat.
  • Recessional moraines and broad glacial terrace- like features provide sufficient evidence of the shrinking of the glacier in the recent past between Gaumukh and Bhojbasa.
  • The River Bhagirathi originates from the glacier retreated more than 1,500m in the last 70 years. 
About Gangotri Glacier
  • Location: Uttarkashi District, Uttarakhand
  • The glacier is one of the largest in the Himalayas with an estimated volume of over 27 cubic kilometers.
  • The glaciers originate at about 7100 m above the sea level and are 30.2 km long and width that varies between 0.5 and 2.5 km.
  • The River Bhagirathi is one of the main tributaries of the Ganga, originates from Gangotri glacier.

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Categories: Environment Current Affairs 2017Places in News 2017Science and Technology Current Affairs - 2017

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