Worldwide Occurrences and Attribution of Moraine-Dammed Glacier Lake Outburst Floods
We have produced a global database of recent moraine-dam failures leading to GLOFs. The data show an abrupt increase in the frequency of GLOFs around 1930, a peak in GLOF frequency in most mountain regions in the 1960-80s and a reduction in frequency since then. The general global picture is one where the post-1930 increase in GLOFs is attributed to a possible delayed response to the warming since the Little Ice Age, but the lack of a surge of GLOFs after 1930 does not support a link between anthropogenic warming and recent GLOFs.
Here, we discuss this pattern of GLOFs and discuss this in the context of paraglaciation and the concept of climate sensitivity. We use these ideas to assess three things: the geomorphological implications of current and future glacier recession; GLOFs and climate change attribution, and the policy implications of paraglaciation.