Glaciares de Chile


"Glacier mass balance data for southern South America (30 °S - 56 °S)"

Casassa, G., A. Rivera and M. Schwikowski (2006) : «Glacier mass balance data for southern South America (30 °S – 56 °S)» In: KNIGHT, P.G., ed., Glacier Science and Environmental Change, Blackwell, Oxford, UK, 239 – 241.

Resumen / Abstract.

Southern South America (SSA), i.e. south of 30°S, comprises an estimated glacier area of ca. 27,500km² (Fig. 47.1), which represents ca. 89% of all Andean glaciers. The glaciers in the region show a generalized retreat and thinning (Naruse, this volume, Chapter 46). In spite of their importance in water resources within a region affected by climate changes, glacier mass balance is to a large extent largely unknown. This summary aims at reviewing the few glacier mass-balance studies available for SSA, obtained by means of firn coring and by the traditional stake method. Data for 15 glacier sites with annual mass-balance observations are presented in Table 47.1. Data obtained from modelling studies, climatological extrapolations or seasonal (and intraseasonal) stake observations are not included in this work. Firn core data include seven sites, covering periods from 1yr to 68 yr; multistake mass-balance studies which cover complete glacier basins exist for five sites and three sites show mass-balance data from single or multiple stakes covering limited portions of glaciers.