Determining the events in a glacial disaster chain at badswat glacier in the karakoram range using remote sensing

Donghui Shangguan*, Da Li, Yongjian Ding, Jun Liu, Muhammad Naveed Anjum, Yaojun Li, Wanqin Guo

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

The Karakoram mountain range is prone to natural disasters such as glacial surging and glacial lake outburst flood (GLOF) events. In this study, we aimed to document and reconstruct the sequence of events caused by glacial debris flows that dammed the Immit River in the Hindu Kush Karakoram Range on 17 July 2018. We used satellite remote sensing and field data to conduct the analyses. The order of the events in the disaster chain were determined as follows: glacial meltwater from the G2 glacier (ID: G074052E36491N) transported ice and debris that dammed the meltwater at the snout of the G1 glacier (ID: G074103E36480N), then the debris flow dammed the Immit River and caused Lake Badswat to expand. We surveyed the extent of these events using remote sensing imagery. We analyzed the glaciers’ responses to this event chain and found that the glacial debris flow induced G1 to exhibit accelerating ice flow in parts of the region from 25 July 2018 to 4 August 2018. According to the records from reanalysis data and data from the automatic weather station located 75 km from Lake Badswat, the occurrence of this disaster chain was related to high temperatures recorded after 15 July 2018. The chains of events caused by glacially related disasters makes such hazards more complex and dangerous. Therefore, this study is useful not only for understanding the formation of glacial disaster chains, but also for framing mitigation plans to reduce the risks for vulnerable downstream/upstream residents.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1165
JournalRemote Sensing
Volume13
Issue number6
Number of pages16
ISSN2072-4292
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology (Grant No. 2018FY100502), the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. XDA19070501), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grants: 41671066, 41950410575, & 41671075).

Funding Information:
This research was funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology (Grant No. 2018FY100502), the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (Grant No. XDA19070501), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grants: 41671066, 41950410575, & 41671075). We thank the USGS for providing the Landsat data and Sentinel 2 (http://glovis. usgs.gov/ accessed on 20 December 2018) images, the China Centre for Resources Satellite Data and Application for providing the CB04 and GF-1 (http://www.cresda.com/ accessed on 15 January 2019) data, Planet image (https://www.planet.com accessed on 23 November 2018), and ECMWF for the ERA-Interim Daily data (https://apps.ecmwf.int/ accessed on 7 December 2018) used in this study.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Keywords

  • Disaster chain
  • Glacial debris flow
  • Glacial lake outburst flood
  • Karakoram
  • Remote sensing

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