Training on the Application of Remote Sensing and Geographical Information Systems for the Mapping and Monitoring of Glaciers

   TwitCount

About the training 

The training is a regular annual activity conducted under the Cryosphere Monitoring Programme (CMP) of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD). It aims to build the capacities of national partners on the use of Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for glacier mapping and monitoring. The five-day training will impart skills and knowledge relating to RS and GIS with particular focus on glacier mapping and monitoring. 

Global temperature rise has been a focus of climate change research. Glaciers are one of the key indicators of climate change. Glaciers and glacial lakes have drawn a lot of interest from scientists as they are sources of fresh water, and glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF) hazards pose a threat to mountain communities. Accounting glacier and glacial lake area change over spatial and temporal domains is the basis of assessing climate change impact. It is important to understand glacier environment and subsequent changes in melt water, glacial lakes and GLOFs in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH). 

ICIMOD first published data on the status of glaciers in the HKH in 2011. It contained information on decadal glacier change in Nepal from the 1980s to 2010. The data are all available on the ICIMOD webpage for reference. In order to understand the impact of global warming, the monitoring of glaciers and glacial lakes should be conducted regularly to see periodical changes. Regular remote sensing based monitoring of glaciers and glacial lake area is still lacking. Continual monitoring of glaciers and glacial lakes is only possible using RS and similar tools due to the physically challenging terrain in which glaciers and glacial lakes are found. 

Objectives 

The training will build and enhance the capacities of professionals working in water resources research and management on RS and GIS for the mapping and monitoring of glaciers and glacial lakes. It will familiarize participants with glacier data and improve their skills in relation to generating and using glacier data on their own. 

Targeted training participants 

The training is targeted at Master’s level glaciology students and mid-level professionals from agencies/organizations/institutes engaged in glacier, glacial lake and water resource management and research. Water resource engineers, researchers from academia, and those with an interest to learn about the use of RS and GIS for mapping are also welcome to join. Basic knowledge of RS and GIS is desirable but not compulsory. 

Expected outcome 

It is expected that the participants will learn about the basics of RS and GIS, and the use of these tools for the mapping and monitoring of glaciers and glacial lakes. The training is designed to impart knowhow on glacier data analysis and assessment. 

Training programme 

The training is designed to introduce participants to the basics of RS and GIS in the first three days. The next two days will be devoted to training them on the application of the same for glacier mapping.