Vol15 No.3: 495-503
【Title】State and fate of the remaining tropical mountain glaciers in Australasia using satellite imagery
【Author】Bijeesh Kozhikkodan VEETTIL; WANG Shan-shan
【Addresses】1 Department for Management of Science and Technology Development, Ton Duc Thang University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; 2 Faculty of Environment and Labour Safety, Ton Duc Thang University, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam; 3 Key Laboratory of Arid Climate Change and Reducing Disaster of Gansu Province & Key Open Laboratory of Arid Climate Change and Disaster Reduction of CMA, Institute of Arid Meteorology CMA, Lanzhou 730020, China
【Citation】Veettil BK, Wang SS (2018) State and fate of the remaining tropical mountain glaciers in Australasia using satellite imagery. Journal of Mountain Science 15(3). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11629-017-4539-0
【Abstract】Tropical glaciers are extremely sensitive to a warming climate. In this paper, the evolution of the remaining tropical glaciers in Australasia (Irian Jaya, Indonesia) during the period 1988-2015 was quantified. Landsat series images, a digital elevation model from SRTM, and previously published data were used. Estimated total glacier area in 1988, 1993, 1997 and 2004 was 3.85 km2±0.13 km2, 3.01 km2±0.08 km2, 2.49 km2±0.07 km2 and 1.725 km2 ±0.042 km2, respectively. Only 0.58 km2±0.016 km2 glacierized area remained in 2015 in Puncak Jaya, which is about 84.9% loss in just 27 years. If this rate continued, the remaining tropical glaciers in Australasia would disappear in the 2020s. Time-series analysis of climate variables showed significant positive trends in air temperature (0.009°C per year) and relative humidity (0.43% per year) but no considerable tendency was observed for precipitation. Warming climate together with mining activities would accelerate loss of glacier coverage in this region.
【Keywords】Glacier shrinkage; Puncak Jaya; Tropical glaciers; Climate change