Experts link climate change, permafrost

  • | Sunday | 12th February, 2017

We must assume that climate change also affects the state of permafrost in the Himalayas, with consequences for landscapes, hazards, natural systems, and livelihoods. The knowledge about permafrost distribution and processes is very limited for this region and its different climatic regimes.We know that permafrost distribution must be widespread in the Himalayas and from other parts of the world, we know that thawing permafrost affects various natural systems, infrastructure, and livelihoods. In the Himalayas, very few studies exist on permafrost. For example, some areas become drier, while others become wetter, which can change biodiversity and plant communities.Greenhouse gases might also be released. Dr Dorothea Stumm, senior glaciologist at the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), Kathmandu, Nepal , says thawing of this invisible layer causes disturbances in natural systems, infrastructure and livelihoodPermafrost is invisible at the surface.

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