Snow and glaciers of the Himalayas

The Himalayan glaciers are a valuable national and global resource – they possess the largest concentration of ice outside of the Polar Regions; regulate global climate; feed most of northern India’s perennial rivers; and are an important indicator of climate change. However, this source of water is not permanent, as glacial dimensions change with the climate. It therefore becomes
imperative to use rigorous science to understand future changes in the extent of Himalayan snow and glacier cover. So far, studies on Himalayan Glaciers have been scanty, and limited to a few glaciers. Bridging this gap in mapping and inventorying is essential for the planning and management of water resources, and space-based monitoring has been found to be a viable and useful alternative. Towards this, an extensive study on ‘Snow and Glaciers of the Himalayas’, and a study on “Snow and Glaciers of the Himalayas: Inventory and Monitoring” - Discussion Paper II, carried out under the joint project of the Ministry of Environment and Forests and Department of Space.


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