October 6, 2022

Summer heat waves caused several glaciers to collapse

Summer heat waves caused several glaciers to collapse

By Jaden Hill
|September 13, 2022

The 2022 summer heat wave broke temperature records across the Northern Hemisphere. In Europe, temperatures rose in Spain, Portugal, France and elsewhere. Britain experienced its hottest day on record (104 degrees Fahrenheit / 40 degrees Celsius) Historically, rising temperatures have increased the number of mountain landslides in Europe. The heat wave especially affected East Asia china And KoreaAnd especially South Asia India And Pakistan. These countries experienced increased losses and severe reductions in crop yields.

The heat waves have also led to the collapse of several glaciers around the world that were already suffering due to rising global temperatures. Glacier collapse is characterized by large chunks of ice that suddenly detach from the glacier and, in the case of mountain glaciers, cause avalanches or landslides. These chunks of ice are large enough to compromise the structure of the glacier and cause it to continue to break until there is minimal ice left.

Heat waves and fires are burning Europe, Africa and Asia and breaking temperature records. (NASA image of the day, July 15, 2022).

At Italian Dolomites, heat wave It led to the total collapse of the glacier on July 3 after temperatures rose to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. This summer’s heat waves are not the beginning of the disappearance of the glaciers in the Dolomites. Instead, the glaciers in the Dolomites had already shrunk 30 percent of the volume from 2004 to 2015. Furthermore, glaciers that begin to show warning signs of possible collapse are often a Higher sensitivity Rising temperatures during the summer months. Italy has failed 25% Its glaciers have been melting for the past 20 years, and this trend is likely to continue after the recent collapse.

In Asia, a heat wave caused a glacier to collapse on July 8 in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan. This event caused an avalanche that did not kill a group of climbers in a few minutes. Central Asia one last summer’s intense heat wave, It causes large parts of the glacier to melt and become unstable.

A third glacier – the central glacier of St. Anaphyrn, Switzerland – is not long for the world as a result of summer heat waves. St. Anafiren was classified as a small glacier: small glaciers make up 80% of Switzerland’s natural glaciers, but there is little research on them compared to the data collected for larger glaciers. By 1850, St. Anaphyran had lost more than 80% of its entire surface, and a significant part of the losses occurred in the last 40 years. As a result of this summer’s unusually high temperatures, the glacier is disappearing faster than expected.

Glaciers are essential parts of the hydrological cycle and habitats for various organisms. However, they also stir something deep in the human soul and allow them to connect with nature in a unique way. Refrigerators have long served as key features in indigenous cultures, particularly in oral traditions and rituals. Tourism is another source of interaction between humans and glaciers, but the increasing frequency of landslides and icefalls threatens tourists who travel to glaciers. Ice stabilizes mountain materialAnd increased melting from rising atmospheric temperatures makes glacier excursions increasingly dangerous. Patterns of glacier disappearance are not unique to Switzerland, Italy or Kyrgyzstan, but occur on a global scale.

Mylène Jacquemart is a geologist with the Center for Earth Observation and Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder, specializing in remote sensing techniques that help us understand the effects of climate change. In an interview with GlacierHub, Jacquemart expressed the importance of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. “Rapid climate action to reduce CO2 emissions is the only thing keeping the glaciers alive,” he said. Rapid climate action includes everything from legal regulation of carbon emissions to support for carbon sequestration schemes. Total collapse is rare in the Dolomites, he added, but “there’s always some residual risk when we’re adventuring in mountainous areas.”

In 2021, annual carbon emissions of up to 36.3 billion tons, the highest amount in history. Carbon emissions are still rising in 2022 and will only get worse as a result of glacial melt. This summer’s heat wave serves as a dramatic lesson, causing several unexpected changes at once. With multiple glacier melt events this summer, it is painfully clear that we must prioritize minimizing carbon emissions to protect and maintain glaciers globally.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.