Back to news
12 Oct 2015 | HKPL

Pakistani students learn about permafrost and glacier monitoring

1 min Read

70% Complete

A two day workshop on permafrost and glaciers was held 15-16 September at Karakoram International University (KIU) in Gilgit, Pakistan. The Permafrost Special Project and Cryosphere Initiative of the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and KIU organised the two day workshop. Up to 40  participants from the university and other institutions attended, including students and researchers with varied backgrounds in geology, environmental science, and biology.

Participants were introduced to Essential Climate Variables (ECS), defined by the Global Climate Observing System, including permafrost, glaciers and snow, and the international cryosphere monitoring strategy, which contributes to a coordinated climate monitoring.

Day one included talks on permafrost, its relevance, methods to investigate permafrost and exercises to interpret ground surface temperatures. Permafrost is ground material that remains frozen for two or more consecutive years. The near surface layer above it thaws during the warm season and is termed the “active layer”. Permafrost thaw influences a broad range of systems including hydrology, ecosystems, vegetation, sediment loads in rivers, debris flows and rock fall. As a consequence, it can strongly affect regional livelihoods and economies. The existence and characteristics of permafrost depend on climatic setting, topography, surface cover and subsurface material.

On day two, participants learned about glacier mass balance as a climate indicator, its relationship to the climate, and monitoring techniques. Field equipment was demonstrated and field measurements were analysed to increase the understanding.

ICIMOD’s Senior Glaciologist and Permafrost Coordinator, Dorothea Stumm, who conducted the workshop, said the workshop was successful in introducing basic knowledge on permafrost and glaciers to the participants.

“We had a good gender balance among the participants, and both women and men took greater interest in learning more about glaciers and the impact of permafrost on the environment”, Stumm said.

Stay current

Stay up to date on what’s happening around the HKH with our most recent publications and find out how you can help by subscribing to our mailing list.

Sign Up

Related Contents

Continue exploring this topic

Trash on Everest. This #WorldEnvironmentDay, it’s time to clean up our act

Read in Chinese   Three actions to #BeatPlasticPollution this World Environment Day Nowhere, it seems, is ...

4 Feb 2016 News
No Entitlement: Living on Borrowed Flood Lands

When our HIAWARE research team visited the small Bihari village in early February, we found Chharki’s streets lined with bamboo cottages ...

Code of conduct being formalized for gender and social inclusion in the brick sector

A national consultation workshop on a social Code of Conduct (CoC) for Nepal’s brick sector was held in Kathmandu on ...

14 Aug 2015 News
EU and ICIMOD intensify collaboration

A joint meeting of delegations from the EU and ICIMOD expressed satisfaction on the progress made by the EU-funded programme ...

Himalayan Nettle Links Marginalised to Private Sector

  'There is commercial value to each and every thing if you have an eye for it', said Chief Executive Officer ...

29 Jul 2015 News
Early warning systems for Mahottari

Three community-based flood early warning systems (CB-FEWS) were installed at different sites along the Ratu River in Mahottari District in ...

14 Aug 2017 News
21 Stakeholders Trained in the Essentials of Climate Change in Chitwan

Other than being catalogued and bound into thick journals to gather dust, what is the use of high-level climate change ...

14 Sep 2015 News
Experts visit WUMP districts to better understand water availability and use

ICIMOD and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation Nepal initiated a collaborative action research to develop local Water Use Master Plans (WUMP) for the Koshi ...