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Evaluating Glacier Volume Changes since the Little Ice Age Maximum and Consequences for Stream Flow by Integrating Models of Glacier Flow and Hydrology in the Cordillera Blanca, Peruvian Andes

1
Department of Geography and Anthropology, California State Polytechnic University Pomona, Pomona, CA 91768, USA
2
Département de génie de la construction, École de technologie supérieure, Montréal, QC H3C 1K3, Canada
3
Department of Geography, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
4
Department of Civil & Geomatics Engineering, Fresno State University, Fresno, CA 93740, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2018, 10(12), 1732; https://doi.org/10.3390/w10121732
Received: 25 September 2018 / Revised: 21 November 2018 / Accepted: 23 November 2018 / Published: 26 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applications of Remote Sensing and GIS in Hydrology)
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Abstract

Evaluating the historical contribution of the volume loss of ice to stream flow based on reconstructed volume changes through the Little Ice Age (LIA) can be directly related to the understanding of glacier-hydrology in the current epoch of rapid glacier loss that has disquieting implications for a water resource in the Cordillera Blanca in the Peruvian Andes. However, the accurate prediction of the future glacial meltwater availability for the developing regional Andean society needs more extensive quantitative estimation from long-term glacial meltwater of reconstructed glacial volume. Modeling the LIA paleoglaciers through the mid-19th century (with the most extensive recent period of mountain glacier expansion having occurred around 1850 AD) in different catchments of the Cordillera Blanca allows us to reconstruct glacier volume and its change from likely combinations of climatic control variables and time. We computed the rate and magnitude of centennial-scale glacier volume changes for glacier surfaces between the LIA and the modern era, as defined by 2011 Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) Global Digital Elevation Model Version 2 (GDEM V2) and 2008 Light Detection and Range (LiDAR) data. The model simulation showed good agreement with the observed geomorphic data and the volume and surface area (V-S) scaling remained within the 25% error range in the reconstructed simulation. Also, we employed a recently demonstrated approach (Baraër, M. et al.) to calculate meltwater contribution to glacierized catchment runoff. The results revealed multiple peaks of both mean annual and dry season discharge that have never been shown in previous research on the same mountain range. View Full-Text
Keywords: glacial meltwater; runoff; Cordillera Blanca; Peruvian Andes; ASTER; LiDAR glacial meltwater; runoff; Cordillera Blanca; Peruvian Andes; ASTER; LiDAR
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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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Huh, K.I.; Baraër, M.; Mark, B.G.; Ahn, Y. Evaluating Glacier Volume Changes since the Little Ice Age Maximum and Consequences for Stream Flow by Integrating Models of Glacier Flow and Hydrology in the Cordillera Blanca, Peruvian Andes. Water 2018, 10, 1732.

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