Glacier Collapse: More Video

February 8, 2021

NPR:

Many of those missing are believed to be workers at the dam. Police say that nine bodies have been recovered so far and that at least 140 people are missing. The chief minister of India’s Uttarakhand state, Trivendra Singh Rawat, told reporters that the figure could rise.

The disaster began around 10:45 a.m. local time when part of the Nanda Devi glacier broke off in an ecologically fragile area of Uttarakhand, an Indian state bordering Nepal and China, high in the Himalayas. Environmentalists have long cautionedagainst building dams and power plants there, because it’s so prone to landslides and flooding.

In 2013, record monsoon rainfall triggered floods that killed about 6,000 people in what was dubbed the “Himalayan tsunami” because it swept away homes, roads and bridges in Uttarakhand.

It wasn’t immediately clear what caused the glacier to break away early Sunday. While climate change has contributed to the shrinkage of Himalayan glaciers, February is still winter in Uttarakhand and not typically the time of year when its glaciers melt.

3 Responses to “Glacier Collapse: More Video”


  1. Having lived in Switzerland I realize that receding glaciers in the European Alps will inevitably cause rock and mud slides. As the weight of the ice is lifted from the mountains lots of kinetic(??)/seismic energy will have to go somewhere.

  2. rhymeswithgoalie Says:

    Al Jazeera has good geographic context for the disaster:

  3. ubrew12 Says:

    “February is still winter in Uttarakhand and not typically the time of year when its glaciers melt.” It may be the time when they are more likely to collapse, however, as fresh snow is piled on top of an ice base weakened by decades of warming.


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