Dynamic Relationship Between Mountain Glaciers and Climate Change

Sunday, February 14, 2016: 1:30 PM-4:30 PM
Marshall Ballroom South (Marriott Wardman Park)
As both climate change and economic development take a firmer hold on mountainous regions, glacier-related hazards and disasters are increasingly in the news. In the media, climate change is widely assumed to be a leading cause of mountain disasters. Is this true, or is it overblown? Are there physical links or statistical correlations between the changing climate and glacier-related hazard processes and disasters? What are the timescales between a climate perturbation and an effect on hazardous mountain processes? Does the historical record of hazardous mountain processes show any links to past climate shifts? How might climate change have affected the Earth surface-process chain associated with recent disasters? This session will explore these questions and delve into the underlying theory, observational technologies, and analytical methods needed to uncover answers. Looking to the future, how might the global and regional patterns of hazardous glacier-related processes change? What steps have been taken in hazard mitigation and disaster preparedness in relation to recent climate-change impacts on glaciers? This symposium discusses how to better utilize satellite observations, climate modeling, and geospatial technologies for monitoring hazards and associated glacier and Earth system dynamics, and improving understanding on whether climate change is a major factor in glacier-related hazards and disasters. Many mountain hazards are transboundary; therefore, international sharing of data and technologies is needed.
Jeffrey Kargel, University of Arizona
Jeffrey Kargel, University of Arizona
Kimberly Casey, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Daene McKinney, University of Texas, Austin
The Hazard of Glacial Lakes: Case Studies from Nepal and Peru
Alton Byers, INSTAAR University of Colorado at Boulder
High Mountains Adaptation Partnership for Natural Hazard Risk Reduction