Cryosphere Monitoring

The cryosphere is water on the earth’s surface and subsurface in its frozen state, including glaciers, snow cover, and permafrost. It’s an integral part of the global climate system. The Himalayas make up the largest cryosphere region outside the poles and are highly sensitive to climate change, but the lack of long-term data for this region undermines efforts to develop policies and programs to promote the rational and sustainable use of these water resources.

ICIMOD is involved in assessments of the Himalayan cryosphere, working to devise ways and means to bridge the information gap. The Geospatial Solution Team works with the ICIMOD Cryosphere Programme to leverage Earth Observation GIS capacities to monitor the state of the cryosphere across the HKH region, including mapping of snow cover, and snow water equivalents, and monitoring temporal changes in glaciated area and water volume.


Publications

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Datasets

The 1000 m MODIS imagery showing a daily cloud cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


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Digital polygon data of Glaciers of Nepal in 1980, 1990, 2000 and 2010. This dataset is created using Landsat MSS,TM and ETM+ imageries of four respective decades. The glacier outlines were derived semi-automatically using object-based image classification (OBIC ) method separately for clean ice and debris cover and further editing and validation was done carefully by draping over the high resolution images from Google Earth. Moreover, the glacier outlines for 2000, 1990 and 1980 were derived manually modifying the glacier outlines of 2010 by overlaying separately the images of respective decades.


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The 500 m MODIS imagery showing a daily snow cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 500 m MODIS imagery showing a daily snow cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 1000 m MODIS imagery showing a daily cloud cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 1000 m MODIS imagery showing a daily cloud cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 500 m MODIS imagery showing a daily snow cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 1000 m MODIS imagery showing a daily cloud cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 500 m MODIS imagery showing a daily snow cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

The 1000 m MODIS imagery showing a daily cloud cover of the HKH region. The image is generated using MODIS (NASA) algorithms to MODIS data received on ICIMOD's receiving station.


View Metadata

Science applications