Vol16 No.5: 1098-1110
【Title】Dynamic changes in lakes in the Hoh Xil region before and after the 2011 outburst of Zonag Lake
【Author】LIU Wen-hui1,2; XIE Chang-wei1*; ZHAO Lin1; WU Tong-hua1; WANG Wu1; ZHANG Yu-xin1,2; YANG Gui-qian1,2; ZHUXiao-fan1,2; YUE Guang-yang1
【Addresses】1 Cryosphere Research Station on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, State Key Laboratory of Cryosphere Sciences, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000, China; 2 University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
【Corresponding author】XIE Chang-wei
【Citation】Liu WH, Xie CW, Zhao L, et al. (2019) Dynamic changes in lakes in the Hoh Xil region before and after the 2011 outburst of Zonag Lake. Journal of Mountain Science 16(5). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11629-018-5085-0
【Abstract】Zonag, Kusai, Hedin Noel and Yanhu Lakes are independent inland lakes in the Hoh Xil region on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. In September 2011, Zonag Lake burst after the water level had increased for many years. Floods flowed through Kusai and Hedin Noel Lakes into Yanhu Lake; since then, the four small endorheic catchments merged into one larger catchment.This hydrological process caused the rapid shrinkage of Zonag Lake and continuous expansion of Yanhu Lake. In this study, based on satellite images, meteorological data and field investigations, we examined the dynamic changes in the four lakes and analyzed the influencing factors. The results showed that before 2011, the trends in the four lake areas were similar and displayed several stages. The change in the area of Zonag Lake corresponded well to the change in annual precipitation (AP), but the magnitude of the change was less than that of a non-glacier-fed lake. Although increased precipitation was the dominant factor that caused Zonag Lake to expand, increased glacier melting and permafrost thawing due to climate warming also had significant effects. After the 2011 outburst of Zonag Lake, due to the increasing AP and accelerating glacier melting, the increases in water volume of the three lakes were absorbed by Yanhu Lake, and Yanhu Lake expanded considerably. According to the rapid growth rates in water level and lake area, Yanhu Lake is likely to burst in 1-2 years.
【Keywords】Dynamic change; Lake areas; Influencing factors; Glacier change; Permafrost thawing; Zonag Lake