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Water 2016, 8(3), 100; doi:10.3390/w8030100

The Mass Balance of Glacier No. 1 at the Headwaters of the Urumqi River in Relation to Northern Hemisphere Teleconnection Patterns

1
State Key Laboratory of Hydrology Water Resources and Hydraulic Engineering, Hohai University, Nanjing 210098, China
2
Department of Water Resources Engineering and Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Lund University, Box 118, SE-221 00 Lund, Sweden
3
Division of Hydrologic Science, Desert Research Institute, Las Vegas, 89119 NV, USA
4
Arid Land Research Center, Tottori University, 1390 Hamasaka, Tottori 680-0001, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Kevin Strychar
Received: 21 January 2016 / Revised: 7 March 2016 / Accepted: 9 March 2016 / Published: 11 March 2016
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Abstract

Most small glaciers in the world have significantly decreased their volume during the last century, which has caused water shortage problems. Glacier No. 1, at the headwaters of the Urumqi River, Tianshan, China, has been monitored since 1959 and similarly has experienced significant mass and volume losses over the last few decades. Thus, we examined the trend and potential abrupt changes of the mass balance of Glacier No. 1. Principal component analysis and singular value decomposition were used to find significant relations between the mass balance of Glacier No. 1 and Northern Hemisphere teleconnection patterns using climate indices. It was found that the mass balance of Glacier No. 1 had a significantly decreasing trend corresponding to −14.5 mm/year from 1959 to 2010. A change point was detected in 1997 with 99% confidence level. Two time periods with different mass balances were identified as 1959–1996 and 1997–2010. The mass balance for the first period was −136.4 mm/year and up to −663.9 mm/year for the second period. The mass balance of Glacier No. 1 is positively related to the Scandinavian Pattern (SCA), and negatively related to the East Atlantic Pattern (EA). These relationships are useful in better understanding the interaction between glacier mass balance and climate variability. View Full-Text
Keywords: Glacier No. 1; mass balance; teleconnection pattern; climate change; climate indices Glacier No. 1; mass balance; teleconnection pattern; climate change; climate indices
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Yuan, F.; Hao, Z.; Berndtsson, R.; Jiang, P.; Yasuda, H. The Mass Balance of Glacier No. 1 at the Headwaters of the Urumqi River in Relation to Northern Hemisphere Teleconnection Patterns. Water 2016, 8, 100.

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