Original Research

Increasing risk of glacial lake outburst floods as a consequence of climate change in the Himalayan region

Somana Riaz, Arshad Ali, Muhammad N. Baig
Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies | Vol 6, No 1 | a110 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/jamba.v6i1.110 | © 2014 Somana Riaz, Arshad Ali, Muhammad N. Baig | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 19 December 2013 | Published: 27 August 2014

About the author(s)

Somana Riaz, Military College of Engineering, National University of Sciences and Technology, Pakistan
Arshad Ali, Military College of Engineering, National University of Sciences and Technology, Pakistan
Muhammad N. Baig, Military College of Engineering, National University of Sciences and Technology, Pakistan


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Abstract

The greater Himalayan Mountains host the largest snow covered area outside the polar regions and serves as the source for some of the major fluvial systems of the world. The region acts as the lifeline for approximately 10% of the world’s population. The terrain is geologically active, highly susceptible to climate change processes and plays a significant role in global hydro-meteorological cycles and biodiversity. With the increasing impacts of climate change to the glaciers and ice caps during the past few decades, people living in the Himalayas have become vulnerable to a higher risk of floods, avalanches and glacial lake outburst floods(GLOFs). This study reviewed the work carried out by earlier researchers to understand the history and science of GLOFs and their potential risk to the communities in the Himalayanbelt, particularly in Pakistan.

Keywords

GLOFs, Himalayan glaciers, climate change

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