Himalayan Glaciers “almost growing to their original size”

Posted: December 6, 2012 by tallbloke in general circulation, Ice ages, Natural Variation

From the Times of India. H/T the GWPF

Good snowfall gives new life to glaciers

Suresh Sharma, TNN Dec 3, 2012, 05.46AM IST


glacierMANALI: With high-altitude mountains in Himachal Pradesh experiencing up to 100 cm fresh snowfall in November month after 10 years, the abundance of snow on mountains has rejuvenated nearly one thousand glaciers and has ensured uninterrupted supply of water for drinking, irrigation and hydel projects.

Even after years of research on glaciers and climate of Himalayas, scientists have failed to learn the pattern of the weather here. While scanty snowfall and rising temperature in last decade had sparked the possibilities of fast shrinking of glaciers, good spells of snowfall in last three years have changed the trend with glaciers almost growing to their original size. Some scientists say that despite heavy snowfall in winters, the extreme heat in summers is causing the melting of the glaciers with abnormal speed and others say extreme cold in winters is neutralizing the minor effect of risen temperature in summer. Overall, speed of melting of glaciers has reduced over the past few years due to good snowfall in winter months.

“Global warming is a contentious issue but it’s a reality,” said J C Kuniyal, senior scientist with GB Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development, who is studying the behaviour of Himalayan environment for many years. “It’s good that our receding glaciers are receiving good amount of snow. Glaciers not only play an important role in balancing life of flora and fauna, but presence of snow on mountains also helps in balancing the temperature. Snowfall would give new life to underground water sources,” he said.

Full story here:

  1. tchannon says:

    Some time ago I nearly made a fuss about an observation but wasn’t sure enough, I still don’t trust it,

    This was finding what looked like water raining out over some years after a pseudo cyclic hot time, roughly a 60y repetition. Not glaciers but floods and so on.

    There are peculiar patterns north and south of the equator which seem to go together and switch with paired other regions. Some of this is about the work done in the far east, India, SE Asia, China with flood and drought, maybe in part linking with monsoons, all generally seeming unpredictable.

    I’ve seen old flood lines which were shocking, see the line, look at the topography and standing there, gulp, but it’s a broad valley and that river is tiny.

  2. tgmccoy says:

    Cycles. No one has a memory longer than 30 minutes anymore-including some in the AGW

  3. Entropic man says:

    A complex message here .

    A glacier is measured by length ,thickness and volume.

    Recent monsoons have been more intense than usual (remember all that flooding in Pakistan, India and Banghadesh),possibly due to increasing Indian Ocean temperatures and evaporation.

    Precipitation at the top of the glacier and on the surrounding mountaintops increases.
    This increases volume and thickness both on the upper glacier and on the rocks at high altitudes, giving increased runoff once the high areas thaw in Summer. It would also provide increased reflection of sunlight (a useful bit of negative feedback)

    The length of the glacier depends on temperature contours in the valley down which it flows, rather than its thickness at the top. The tip melts at the Summer 0C contour, which is gradually moving to higher altitudes. Warming Summer temperatures have been shortening the glaciers at the bottom, while increased precipitation has been replenishing their sources.

    It is not entirely clear from the news item, but my own expectation would be that in recent years Himalayan glaciers have become thicker, more voluminous and shorter.

    The IPCC got this one wrong in AR4; does anyone have good recent data on the Himalayas?

  4. Entropic man says:


    Lots of cycles. Unfortunately only the Milankovitch cycle and the seasons seem to pedal fast enough to explain the temperature changes we measure.

    [Reply] Entropic is playing dumb again. Alpine glaciers in Europe (and probably elsewhere) receded in the medieval warm period, lengthened in the little ice age, and receded again after the mid 1800’s (long before co2 rose steeply)

  5. sunsettommy says:

    Gosh weather goes in cycles where we have dry years and wet years.That we have warm years and cold years.That we have snowy years and not snowy years.

    I still remember the cold 1970’s and those nasty blizzards in New York … then BOOM it suddenly stops and starts warming up starting with that impressive 1982 El-Nino.

  6. Entropic man says:


    “Alpine glaciers in Europe (and probably elsewhere) receded in the medieval warm period, lengthened in the little ice age, and receded again after the mid 1800′s (long before co2 rose steeply)”

    Playing dumb is a rhetorical technique which goes right back to ancient Greece. The responses allow you to ask interesting questions like this one.

    Why did Earth have a Medieval Warm Period, then a Little Ice Age, then another warm period?
    This forum is always very keen to ascribe climate changes to cycles, but is always very coy when it comes to the mechanisms driving the cycles.

    [Reply] There is a 974yr re-alignment in the planetary system which we hypothesise to be connected to this temperature cycle, which extends back through the MWP to the Roman warm period, the Mycean Warm Period, and beyond.

  7. Entropic man says:


    Same rules for all. As you keep reminding me, correalation is not causation.You need evidence and a physically valid mechanism. Climate science points out a correalation between CO2 levels and temperature. Tim Folkerts and others have provided a mechanism and supporting evidence.

    You need to do the same, when opportunity offers. You will need to demonstrate you correalation beyond reasonable doubt and provide a physically valid mechanism by which these alignments change the heat budget of the Earth. You assert it, sooner or later you need to back it up, with numbers.

    [Reply] Two mechanisms already in the literature, more on the way. And I don’t think Tim Folkerts has provided a mechanism. He says radiation from cold molecules *must* heat the surface, but doesn’t say *how*. DWIR can’t penetrate the ocean surface much beyond its own wavelength. This is a serious problem for radiative greenhouse theorists, and they NEVER ADDRESS IT.

  8. oldbrew says:

    Himalayan Glaciers “almost growing to their original size”

    No doubt the IPCC will be keen to highlight this in their next report 🙂