Glacial Retreat Will Continue But Can Be Checked: Scientist

Thursday, 30 October 2014, 10:52 Hrs
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SHIMLA: The glaciers in the Himalayas will continue to retreat for another 40-50 years and if this phenomenon is not checked, temperature will rise by at least four degrees Celsius by the end of this century.



This caution has been issued by Anil Kulkarni, a scientist with the Bangalore-based Indian Institute of Science, at a conference on Himalayan glaciology here Thursday.



"But everything is still not lost. It can be checked by policy interventions. The consistent receding of glaciers will be a big threat to the food security," he said.



Kulkarni said it was wrong to presume that all the glaciers will disappear by 2035. "The earlier studies which established this fact were not scientific."



"Seventy percent of water from the melting glaciers flows down to Pakistan and about 90 percent of the irrigation is done with this water."



"A small window of opportunity is still available to India and the world to save the situation (glacier receding). If we keep the level of glaciers to what existed in 1980s, it can possibly lead to their conservation," the scientist said.



He said, "It's a known phenomenon that the temperatures are rising and the precipitation is increasing. It needs to be studied how it would affect the availability of water in times to come."



The Himalayas are home to 10,000 glaciers, covering about 40,000 sq km area.
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