Temporal glacier area changes correlated with the El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation using satellite imagery

Kairi Morizawa, Yoshihiro Asaoka, So Kazama, Luminda Niroshana Gunawardhana
Released: April 18, 2013

Temporal glacier area changes correlated with the El Niño/La Niña Southern Oscillation using satellite imagery

Kairi Morizawa1), Yoshihiro Asaoka1), So Kazama1), Luminda Niroshana Gunawardhana2)

1) Graduate School of Engineering, Tohoku University
2) Civil and Architectural Engineering Department, Sultan Qaboos University

We used Landsat satellite images to determine the areal change between 1988 and 2010 of the Condoriri glacier in Bolivia and found that the area decreased by 41% during that period. Moreover, the interannual pattern of recession and expansion of the glacier coincided with warm and cold phases of El Niño/La Niña-Southern Oscillation (ENSO), respectively. Because the glacier recedes more during El Niño events than it expands during La Niña events, the net result is a retreating trend, which, if it continues, means that the glacier will disappear completely by 2035. ENSO frequency increased during the latter part of the 20th century, and ENSO events may become more frequent with continued climate change. Therefore, it is urgent to take measures to adapt Bolivian water management to the loss of glacier meltwater.

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Edited and published by : Japan Society of Hydrology and Water Resources Produced and listed by : Nakanishi Printing Co.,Ltd.(Vol. 4 (2010)) Gakujutsu-tosho Printing Co. Ltd.(Vol. 2 (2008) – Vol. 4 (2010))

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