Month / August 2016

    Loading posts...
  • Science and Politics in a Mountain Grassland in Peru

    A recent visit to a research site in a high-elevation grassland in the Cordillera Blanca of Peru demonstrated the importance of these rapidly changing ecosystems.  It showed as well the challenges of carrying out studies in this area, and the opportunities for collaborations between different organizations. The Science of Grasslands On August 17 I drove…

  • As Temperatures Rise, Poplars Replace Alaskan Tundra

    In Alaska’s Denali National Park, summer temperatures have risen 2 degrees Celsius over the past century, with the majority of change occurring since the 1970s. The glaciers that cover 1 million square miles of the park are melting rapidly, exposing bare earth where there once was ice. An Ecosphere study, published July 19, finds that the rising…

  • Roundup: Blue Lakes in Antarctica, Yak Dung and River Gauges in Asia

    This Week’s Roundup: Blue lakes on an East Antarctic glacier are a troubling sign, scientists say From Yahoo News: “British researchers have discovered a troubling trend in East Antarctica: As air temperatures become warmer each summer, more and deeper lakes are showing up atop Langhovde Glacier. Their study, published this month in the journal Geophysical…

  • Photo Friday: Volcanic Readiness in Colombia

    The Volcanic and Seismological Observatory of Manizales has recently conducted several workshops on volcanic risk with communities in the vicinity of Nevado del Ruiz, a glacier-covered volcano in Colombia that showed signs of renewed activity earlier this year. The workshops prepare communities to react to volcanic hazards like ash and lahars, the latter of which…

  • Officials, Experts, Local People Visit a High-risk Glacier Lake

    Over 30 people, including government officials, researchers, students and journalists, recently visited Palcacocha, a lake at the foot of a large glacier high in the Peruvian Andes. This one-day trip was a tour that came the day after an international glacier conference held nearby. The group discussed natural hazards and water resources associated with the…

  • When Glaciers Melt, Engineers Build Artificial Ones

    Artificial glaciers may not serve as a permanent solution to glacial melting, but the technology is still helping subsistence farmers in high mountain ecosystems continue farming with diminishing water supplies, according to a new study from the University of Massachusetts and the University of Pittsburgh. For the past three decades, certain Himalayan communities have used…

  • East African Glaciers at Risk from “Global Drying”

    In the tropical climate of East Africa, glaciers are an unexpected, yet vitally important part of the ecosystem. Since 1900, African glaciers have lost a staggering 80 percent of their surface area, contributing to regional water shortages. While rising temperatures may seem like an obvious cause of global glacier retreat in many regions, the glaciers…

  • Roundup: GLOFs, Presidential Warnings, and Glacial Lakes

    Obama: Climate Change ‘Could Mean No More Glaciers In Glacier National Park,’ Statue of Liberty From Breitbart:  “During Saturday’s Weekly Address, President Obama stated, “the threat of climate change means that protecting our public lands and waters is more important than ever. Rising temperatures could mean no more glaciers in Glacier National Park. No more…

  • Photo Friday: Massive Landslide in Glacier Bay National Park

    This summer a 4,000-foot mountainside collapsed on the Lamplugh Glacier in Glacier Bay National Park in Alaska. Sightseeing and charter flight pilot Paul Swanstrom was the first to discover and photograph the massive landslide after he noticed a large cloud of dust over the glacier. This region in Alaska is very geologically active and landslides…

  • Peru Conference Calls for More Work on Climate Change, Disaster Risk

    A major international forum this month in Peru has resulted in calls for strengthening research capabilities and for programs in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. It also had demonstrated the need for greater public participation and the development of new financial mechanisms to support these activities. It showed the importance of flexible governance…