April 10, 2013

Herz Glacier Retreat, South Georgia

Posted by Mauri Pelto

Herz Glacier is on the southeast coast of South Georgia Island. The terminus change of this tidewater glacier ending in Iris Bay was completed by the British Antarctic Survey for the 1960-2007 period (Gordon et al, 2008). The map below indicates the slow retreat from 1960-1988 and a more rapid retreat since.harz glacier map Here we examine imagery from Google Earth and Landsat to examine terminus change from 1989-2010. In each image the red arrow indicates the location of the terminus in 2009-2010 the yellow arrow the 1989 terminus position. The first image is the Google Earth image from 2010, followed by the 1989, 2000 and 2009 Landsat images. The terminus on the north side of the fjord has retreated 1.8 km in the 20 year period and the terminus on the south side has retreat 2.2 km. The overall 2 km retreat is a rate of 100 meters/year and is 20 % of the total glacier length. This is an exceedingly cloudy region and imagery from 2011 and 2012 does not provide a clear observation of the terminus. The retreat of this glacier is less dramatic than that of Neumayer Glacier or Ross Hindle Glacier further north on the coast.herz glacier ge

harz glacier 1989

harz glacier 2000

harz glacier 2009