Glacial lake change risk and management on the Chinese Nyainqentanglha in the past 40 years

  • Shijin W
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The paper analyzed synthetically spatial distribution and evolution status of moraine-dammed lakes in the Nyainqentanglha Mountain, revealed risk degree of county-based potential dangerous glacial lakes (PDGLs) outburst floods disaster by combining PDGLs outburst hazard, regional exposure, vulnerability of exposed elements and adaptation capability and using the Analytic Hierarchy Process and Weighted Comprehensive Method. The results indicate that 132 moraine-dammed lakes (>&amp;thinsp;0.02&amp;thinsp;km<sup>2</sup>) with a total area of 38.235&amp;thinsp;km<sup>2</sup> were detected in the Nyainqentanglha in the 2010s, the lake number decreased only by 5&amp;thinsp;%, whereas total lake area expanded by 22.72&amp;thinsp;%, in which 54 lakes with a total area of 17.53&amp;thinsp;km<sup>2</sup> are identified as PDGLs and total area increased by 144.31&amp;thinsp;%, higher significantly than 4.06&amp;thinsp;% of non-PDGLs. The zones at very high and high integrated risk of glacial lakes outburst floods (GLOFs) disaster are concentrated in the eastern Nyainqentanglha, whereas low and very low integrated risk zones are located mainly in the western Nyainqentanglha. On the county scale, Nagque and Nyingchi have the lowest hazard risk, Banbar has the highest hazard and vulnerability risk, Sog and Lhorong have the highest exposure risk. In contrast, Biru and Jiali have the highest vulnerability risk, while Gongbo'gyamda and Damxung have lowest adaptation capacity. The regionalization results for GLOF disaster risk in the study are consistent with the distribution of historical disaster sites across the Nyainqentanglha.




Shijin, W. (2016). Glacial lake change risk and management on the Chinese Nyainqentanglha in the past 40 years. Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences Discussions, 1–14.

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