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Glaciers of Kashmir shrinking at alarming speed

"Indian Kashmir's biggest glacier that feeds the region's river system is melting faster threatening the water supply of tens of thousands of people. As per the report, the biggest glacier in Indian Kashmir, the Kolahoi glacier spread over 11 sq km (4.25 sq mile), has shrunk by 2.63 sq km in last three decades."

HNF Bureau : October 15, 2009

Bounty of nature, the Himalayan range is facing serious threat from the trends of climate change due to global warming. The report of United Nations Environment Programme and World Glacier Monitoring Service study found serious danger to the Himalayan glaciers citing that the average melting rate of mountain glaciers doubled since the turn of the millennium with record losses seen in 2006 at several sites.

The report expressed serious concern over the Himalayan ecosystem as Indian Kashmir's biggest glacier that feeds the region's river system is melting faster threatening the water supply of tens of thousands of people. As per the report, the biggest glacier in Indian Kashmir, the Kolahoi glacier spread over 11 sq km (4.25 sq mile), has shrunk by 2.63 sq km in last three decades.

The report, while presented at a workshop on "Climate Change, Glacial Retreat and Livelihoods" in Srinagar, revealed that "Kolahoi glacier is shrinking at the rate of 0.08 square kilometers a year, which is an alarming speed. Kolahoi glacier is the main source of water for Kashmir's biggest river, the Jhelum, and its many streams and lakes.

Glaciologist Shakil Ramsoo, Assistant Professor of University of Kashmir’s Department of Geology led the study that took three years to come at the conclusion that rising temperatures are rapidly shrinking Himalayan glaciers, underscoring the effects of climate change that has caused temperatures in the mountainous region to rise by about 1.1 degrees Celsius in the past 100 years.

It poses threat to the people of the state as most Kashmiris rely on glaciers for water.

 

 

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