Spatiotemporal changes of typical glaciers and their responses to climate change in Xinjiang, Northwest China
Glaciers are highly sensitive to climate change and are undergoing significant changes in mid-latitudes. In this study, we analyzed the spatiotemporal changes of typical glaciers and their responses to climate change in the period of 1990–2015 in 4 different mountainous sub-regions in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of Northwest China: the Bogda Peak and Karlik Mountain sub-regions in the Tianshan Mountains; the Yinsugaiti Glacier sub-region in the Karakorum Mountains; and the Youyi Peak sub-region in the Altay Mountains. The standardized snow cover index (NDSI) and correlation analysis were used to reveal the glacier area changes in the 4 sub-regions from 1990 to 2015. Glacial areas in the Bogda Peak, Karlik Mountain, Yinsugaiti Glacier, and Youyi Peak sub-regions in the period of 1990–2015 decreased by 57.7, 369.1, 369.1, and 170.4 km², respectively. Analysis of glacier area center of gravity showed that quadrant changes of glacier areas in the 4 sub-regions moved towards the origin. Glacier area on the south aspect of the Karlik Mountain sub-region was larger than that on the north aspect, while glacier areas on the north aspect of the other 3 sub-regions were larger than those on the south aspect. Increased precipitation in the Karlik Mountain sub-region inhibited the retreat of glaciers to a certain extent. However, glacier area changes in the Bogda Peak and Youyi Peak sub-regions were not sensitive to the increased precipitation. On a seasonal time scale, glacier area changes in the Bogda Peak, Karlik Mountain, Yinsugaiti Glacier, and Youyi Peak sub-regions were mainly caused by accumulated temperature in the wet season; on an annual time scale, the correlation coefficient between glacier area and annual average temperature was –0.72 and passed the significance test at P<0.05 level in the Karlik Mountain sub-region. The findings of this study can provide a scientific basis for water resources management in the arid and semi-arid regions of Northwest China in the context of global warming.
glacier area change; normalized snow cover index (NDSI); climate change; remote sensing; Altay Mountains; Tianshan Mountains; Karakorum Mountains
Xiaoran, HUANG; Anming, BAO; Hao, GUO; Fanhao, MENG; Pengfei, ZHANG; Guoxiong, ZHENG; Tao, YU; Peng, QI; NZABARINDA, Vincent; and Weibing, Du
"Spatiotemporal changes of typical glaciers and their responses to climate change in Xinjiang, Northwest China,"
Journal of Arid Land: Vol. 14:
5, Article 3.
Available at: https://egijournals.researchcommons.org/journal-of-arid-land/vol14/iss5/3