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Himalayan Glaciers Shrinking By 75%: ISRO

Himalayan Glaciers Shrinking
By ONE Liners Agency

The Government of India's primary space research body ISRO (Indian Space Research Organization) published a report, showing images of retreating Himalayan glaciers. The satellite images revealed shocking pictures, depicting 75% of Himalayan glaciers were shrinking at a steady pace with average shrinkage rate being 3.75km during the 15 years under study. In 2007, IPCC report said that Himalayan glaciers would be disappeared by 2035, which provoked heavy controversy. ISRO satellite mission to unveil the detail analysis of Himalayan glaciers began after the raging controversy.

The grim finding came after studying 2,190 glaciers broke the myths of disappearance of Himalayan glaciers but undoubtedly raised concern over Asia's 'water towers'.

Dr Ajai, group director, Marine, Geo and Planetary Science Group (MPSG), Space Applications Centre, Ahmedabad said that they were now sure about the findings of Himalayan glaciers shrinking, giving an account of 8% have advanced and 17% are stable. He further said that the detail data would publish soon.

The satellite images took by Resourcesat-1 over a period of 15 years (1989-2004). There were about 50 environmentalists, scientists and 14 organizations were involved in the project, including field trips and analysis of other mountainous ranges.

There were three major institutions involved in the study named B Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development, Kashmir University and Jawaharlal Nehru University. The experts and volunteers also visited the glaciers to make their reports.

The study involved the basins of the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra. It also covered Himalayan parts that spread to China, Nepal, Bhutan and Pakistan. It is reported that the first time this type of extensive study had been done on Himalayan glaciers. Other mountainous range that have a high percentage of retreat rate are Alps.

ISRO earlier in 2010 revealed a study report on retreating glaciers, involving 1,317 Himalayan glaciers, which said glaciers had retreated by 16% since 1962. The recent satellite images also showed a minute increase in the area under mangroves.

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