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Dust from Thar Desert Affect Tibetan Glaciers

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Dust particles, primarily originating from the Thar Desert and Taklimakan Desert, are transported by westerly winds, significantly affecting the central and southern glaciers of the Tibetan Plateau, revealed a latest study.

Findings reveal that the Taklimakan Desert and Thar Desert emerge as the primary sources of this significant environmental impact.


The study sheds light on the critical role of these dust particles in the region’s glacial environment and their broader implications for climate change. Dust deposition on glacier surfaces reduces their albedo, which is the fraction of light reflected by the ice, leading to increased solar radiation absorption. This, in turn, accelerates glacier melting, with far-reaching consequences for global climate patterns.

Accurate identification of the dust sources is essential for understanding the dynamics of the Tibetan Plateau’s glacial ecosystem and reconstructing the regional atmospheric environment. The research, conducted by the Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, employs innovative tracer methods to pinpoint the origins of the glacial dust. This study provides valuable insights for future efforts aimed at analyzing glacier characteristics and climate reconstruction.



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