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Experts say climate change behind Uttarakhand glacier break off

Experts say climate change behind Uttarakhand glacier break off

A rare incident, they say; temperatures rising in the Hindu-Kush Himalayan region

Experts are citing climate change as the reason behind the flood caused by a glacier breaking off in Uttarakhand, a “rare incident” by any measure according to them.

Prima facie this looks very much like a climate change event as the glaciers are melting due to global warming, says Anjal Prakash, the lead author of the ongoing 6th Assessment report of IPCC.

Temperatures are rising in the Hindu-Kush Himalayan region and the rise in global temperature will have more impact in the Himalayan region due to elevation-dependent warming, he says citing reports

Prakash says the IPCC’s Special Report on Oceans and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) reports that climate change has altered the frequency and magnitude of the natural hazards”.

“The scientist reported with medium confidence that in some regions snow avalanches involving wet snow have increased while the rain on snow floods have also increased at lower elevations in springs. We do not have the data now to give you information on what has caused the avalanche in the Chamoli district but what we know, prima facie, is that this looks very much like a climate change event as the glaciers are melting due to global warming,” she said.

“The impact of global warming on glacial retreat is well documented. The recent assessment report called the HI-MAP report facilitated by ICIMOD has also pointed these out. The report shows that temperatures are rising in the Hindu-Kush Himalayan region and the rise in global temperature will have more impact in the Himalayan region due to elevation-dependent warming".

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