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March 2, 2018

Lower Curtis Glacier Annual Terminus Response to Climate Change

Side view of Lower Curtis Glacier in 2013, 2015 and 2017, illustrating the reduced slope and height of glacier front in just four years. Terminus observations have been reported to the WGMS from 2500 glaciers with 46,500 specific observations since the late 19th century, which you can explore with the glacier viewer application. Here we examine what it looks like to report from a glacier each year.  I have visited this …


December 14, 2017

From a Glaciologists Perspective AGU Day 3

Snapshot of day 3  of Glaciology poster presentations at AGU.  The amount of glaciology research is impressive, there is much we do not know.  We can no longer say that we know very little about any aspect or region.  Before saying that explore the vast literature that is now available. Jeff La Freniere at Gustavus Adolphus College used several new technologies,  aerial and terrestrial LIDAR and structure-from-motion photogrammetry from drones …


December 12, 2017

From a Glaciologists Perspective AGU Day 2

It has been 30 years since my first experience at the AGU, at that time glaciology and the cryosphere played a small role.  Today that is clearly not the case.  Today just a glimpse of a few of the many interesting glaciers studies are provided to again illustrate the vast array and amazing detail of work being conducted. Samiah Mustafa, Brown University presented research looking at the ability of a …


December 11, 2017

From a Glaciologists Perspective AGU Day 1

The theme changes from a glaciers to a glaciologists perspective with a focus on selected work at the AGU 2017. The research discussed here is from the Poster Paper sessions the most interactive part of the convention.  The following are some interesting snapshots of the breadth and depth of ongoing research.  The most compelling figure from each poster is used. Richard Forster, U of Utah team presented work on the …


October 20, 2017

Glacier Retreat Generating New Islands List

Climate change has been driving the recession of glaciers and ice sheets, which in turn has been changing our maps.  One notable category of physical geographic features indicative of the change due to the retreat is the formation of new islands.  Below is a list of new islands that this blog has identified and reported.  This is not a comprehensive list of all islands that have been formed.   Upernavik Glacier, …


August 25, 2017

Record High Mont Blanc, France Glacier August Snow Lines 2017

Landsat image of the transient snow line on Mont Blanc Glaciers, France on 8/19/2017.  The average snow line (Purple dots) is at 3100 m.  Glaciers on Mer de Glace (M), Argentiere (A), Tour Glacier (L), Trient Glacier (T) and Saleina Glacier (S).  This has been a warmer summer in the Alps with reports emerging of various summer ski areas that take advantage of glaciers closing early or adding snow guns …


June 27, 2017

Mensu Glacier, Siberia Russia Retreat 1994-2016

Mensu Glacier, Russia in comparison of 1994 and 2016 Landsat images.  Red arrow is the 1994 terminus, yellow arrow 2016 terminus, purple arrow a tributary and purple dots the snowline.  Mensu Glacier (Lednik Mensu) drains northeast from Gora Belukha in the Russian Altai.  The glacier drains into the Ob River and then the Arctic Ocean.  This glacier has not been the focus of detailed research to date. Khromova et al (2014) report …


June 5, 2017

Llewellyn Glacier, BC Proglacial Lake Merging From Retreat

Llewellyn Glacier comparison in 1984 Landsat and 2016 Sentinel images.  Red arrows the 1984 terminus locations for proglacial lakes A-D, yellow arrows the 2016 terminus locations for A and B. Point E was the peninsula separating proglacial lakes A and B, which are now joined due to glacier retreat.  The second largest glacier of the Juneau Icefield is the Llewellyn Glacier which is in British Columbia. The Juneau Icefield Research …


February 27, 2017

A River Runs 40 km Across the Greenland Ice Sheet

Supraglacial stream, on July 26, 2016 Landsat image, stretching 40 km across the ice sheet from the transient snowline, which marks the boundary between the percolation zone and the wet snow zone,  west toward the ice sheet margin, note black arrows.   The Greenland Ice Sheet has experienced a significant increase in surface melt.  This is due both to warmer temperatures and enhanced melt due to a reduction in reflectivity-albedo. The expansion …


February 17, 2017

State of Alpine Glaciers in 2016-Negative for 37th Consecutive Year

Figure 1. Global Alpine glacier annual mass balance record of reference glaciers submitted to the World Glacier Monitoring Service. Each year I write the section of the BAMS State of the Climate on Alpine Glaciers.  What follows is the initial draft of that with a couple of added images and an added paragraph. The World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) record of mass balance and terminus behavior (WGMS, 2015) provides a …