Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 1990, Vol. 45 ›› Issue (1): 1-13.doi: 10.11821/xb199001001

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GLACIER RECESSION AND LAKE SHRINKAGE INDICATING THE CLIMATIC WARMING AND DRYING TREND IN CENTRAL ASIA

Shi Yafeng   

  1. Lanzhou Institute of Glaciology and Geocryology
  • Online:1990-01-15 Published:1990-01-15

Abstract: Mass balance observations on Urumqi River, No.l Glacier and Tuyuksu Glacier in Tian-span show a large deficit during the 1980's as compared with the decades before. The Qinghai Lake in Northeastern Qinghai-xizang (Tibet) Plateau and the Issyk-kul Lake in Soviet Tianshan have been continuously shrinking during the past few centuries. Since the maximum of the Little Ice Age which occurred mainly in the 18th century, glaciers have decreased in area by aboue 44% in the Urumqi valley. These data and other evidence of glaciers, lakes, etc. clearly indicate that the climatic warming and drying tendency grows stronger in this century and would pos-sibly persist to the early decades of next century. T'he growing greenhouse effect due to the incr-ease of CO2 and other related gases will enhance this tendency in the near future. However, should the high temperature period of the early and middle Holocene reappear, the climate mi-ght become humid.

Key words: Mass balance of glacier, Lake level change, Little glacial age, Optimum, Dry-warming trends