Snow Cover Trends Over High Mountain Asia from Modscag

TitleSnow Cover Trends Over High Mountain Asia from Modscag
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2019
AuthorsAckroyd, Chelsea, S. Skiles McKenzie, Rittger Karl, and Meyer Joachim
Conference Name87th Annual Western Snow Conference
Conference LocationReno, NV

Snow from the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH) significantly contributes to the water resources that millions depend upon downstream (Immerzeel et al., 2010). Several countries, including Bhutan and Pakistan, depend on snowmelt for agriculture and energy-generating purposes, both of which are main components of these local economies (Sharma et al., 2014; Atif et al., 2018). In addition to its socioeconomic impacts, snow cover in this region also contributes to Earth’s intricate feedback systems. A decrease in snow lowers the surface albedo and increases the energy absorbed, known as the snow albedo feedback; a highly effective radiative forcing mechanism
that contributes to climate change (Hall and Qu, 2006). As the HKH encompasses more snow and ice than anywhere else in the world outside of the polar regions (Panday et al., 2011), a decline in snow would alter the earth’s energy budget. Therefore, it is important to understand how snow patterns are changing over time in this region.