Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Global glacier mass balance in decline

The World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS) based in Zurich collects and provides annual mass balance data for glaciers around the world. These data, reported by the WGMS at the recent European Geosciences Union meeting in Vienna, demonstrate a mean loss of 2.9% per decade from 1850 to 1970. This figure has increased to 8.2% for the period 1970 to 2000. Further information is available from the WGMS web site (from which mass balance data are available) and a recent BBC News report.

The image shows Nigardsbreen on the Jostedals ice cap in central Norway. This is one of the few glaciers which is currently advancing, against the gloabal trend....