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Glacial Calving, Climate Change: What Led To The Uttarakhand Disaster?

Uttarakhand Catastrophe: Sunday’s incidence induced a deluge within the Alaknanda river system


  • 18 folks have been killed following the flash flood in Uttarakhand
  • Environmentalists say the tragedy was brought on by fast tempo of improvement
  • Deluge seems to be brought on by “glacial calving”: Authorities Physique

New Delhi:

What induced the devastating flash flood in Uttarakhand on Sunday, that has killed 18 people and left over 200 missing within the hill state? Whereas consultants say it’s too early to level out what induced the catastrophe, completely different theories have emerged, from the incident being a “glacial lake outburst flood” to an avalanche, main to clutter falling within the river. Environmentalists have blamed the catastrophe on the fast tempo of improvement within the area and on local weather change.

Geological Survey of India, the nation’s prime physique to review geoscientific actions, at present stated the deluge seems to be brought on by “glacial calving”. “Submit this devastation, we’ll once more represent a committee because it’s too early to foretell relating to the reason for incident. Prima facie, it is glacial calving on the highest altitude in Rishiganga and Dhauliganga space and the higher reaches of that,” stated Dinesh Gupta, the chief of Geological Survey of India.

On Sunday, authorities stated initially that the trigger was a piece of glacier breaking off right into a river, and later that the set off might as an alternative have been a phenomenon known as a glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF). That is when the boundaries of a glacial lake – fashioned when a glacier retreats – are breached, releasing giant quantities of water downstream.

An IIT professor stated it’s unlikely that it was a cloud burst. “It is a very uncommon incident for a glacial burst to occur. Satellite tv for pc and Google Earth photos don’t present a glacial lake close to the area, however there is a chance that there could also be a water pocket within the area. Water pockets are lakes contained in the glaciers, which can have erupted resulting in this occasion… It’s unlikely that this was a cloud burst…,” stated Dr. Mohd Farooq Azam, Assistant Professor, Glaciology and Hydrology, IIT-Indore.

The glacier catastrophe is a reminder of the monsoon floods and landslides in Uttarakhand in 2013, which killed 6,000 folks and led to requires a assessment of improvement tasks within the state, significantly in remoted areas like these across the Rishi Ganga dam. Specialists have identified that the a whole bunch of energy tasks and widening of roads is taking part in havoc with the ecologically fragile area which can be earthquake-prone.

Sunday’s incidence induced a deluge within the Alaknanda river system that washed away hydroelectric stations and 5 bridges. It additionally swept away roads and compelled authorities to evacuate villages.

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