USGS research on three mid-latitude glaciers

TitleUSGS research on three mid-latitude glaciers
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2000
AuthorsGreen, J. R., Cecil L. D., Naftz D. L., and Schuster P. F.
Conference Name68th Annual Western Snow Conference
Series TitleProceedings of the 68th Annual Western Snow Conference
Date PublishedApril 2000
PublisherWestern Snow Conference
Conference LocationPort Angeles, Washington
KeywordsClimate change, Geochemistry, Glaciers, Modeling, Paleoclimate

Low- and mid-Iatitude regions of the earth are home to 80 to 90 percent of the world's population. Because of this, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting a research program to study the geochemistry of precipitation' snow, ice, and runoff samples from mid-latitude glaciers in Kyrghyzstan, Nepal, and the United States. Areas of research, such as ground-water studies, reconstructing paleoclimate records, describing anthropogenic input of chemicals to the environment, and modeling global climate change, are important to the well being of the worlds' population and can be supplemented by the collection and chemical analysis of snow and ice cores. Nearly all the constituents that compose snow and ice-core samples contribute vital information, whether it be the microbial communities that flourish in snow, radionuclides present in various amounts in all the samples, or location-specific deposits of mercury and nitrate. This work is hastened by the fact that mid-Iatitude glaciers, and the information preserved in them, are rapidly disappearing as a result of global warming. Research collabomtion for this project includes 12 national and 7 international universities, and 4 government agencies. Funding is provided by the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the USGS.