Instead of the glaciers in the Altai Mountains, soon there will be forests, scientists say. Due to climate change the ice massif there are rapidly declining. Over the past 40 years 77 glaciers melted. This trend, according to specialists, Altai State University to continue in the coming decade.
Altai glaciers began to melt in the middle of the 19th century and during that time retreated a half to two miles. In the year disappears in about 10-15 feet of ice, told the "Voice of Russia" Assistant Professor of Geography at the Altai State University Oleg Ostanin
"It belongs to the largest valleys and glaciers. Recently, however, melts glaciers start at a higher rate. For example, in 2008, Sophia glacier melts at a rate of 40 meters per year. This is quite a high value."
According to scientists, the reason lies in the retreat of glaciers global warming. The average temperature in the Altai increased over a century and a half degrees. Moreover, says the growth dynamics of the process. It is projected that in the next ten years, the retreat of glaciers will continue and even faster than now. What would result from the melting of glaciers? First of all, it will affect the state of rivers, explained Oleg Ostanin:
"This could affect the development of agriculture, because agricultural land attached to waterways. A proportion of glaciers is like a backbone for the region. Contributes the largest share of snow, melt water, sediments, but the main rivers, especially high, are the glaciers" .
The data show that the Earth's climate is warming steadily over the past one hundred and fifty years. And before that, there was, however, a cold snap. Such climatic "swing," they note, are natural to the environment. For example, from VII to XII century went even stronger warming than now. However, in the current environment to the natural temperature fluctuations superimposed human factor — the human impact of civilization. And because science is closely monitoring the speed of melting glaciers.
This process is not only disadvantages but also advantages, said Oleg Ostanin: "Following the retreat of the glaciers of the upper limit of the forest at the same change. Forests gradually go behind by glaciers. Consequently, the share of forests will increase. And for the forests will be tightened and other landscapes. "
How will this process, scientists are not ready to predict. However, for these phenomena is necessary to conduct constant surveillance, they believe. It is known that in the living world is interconnected: changing one factor inevitably affects all others.