preliminary glacier mass balance data 2007/2008

1   Summary of the balance year 2007/08

Preliminary mass balance values for the observation period 2007/08 have been reported now from more than 90 glaciers worldwide. The mass balance statistics (Table 1) are calculated based on all reported values as well as on the data from the 30 reference glaciers in 9 mountain ranges (Table 2) with continuous observation series back to 1980.

The average mass balance of the glaciers with available long-term observation series around the world continues to decrease, with tentative figures indicating a further thickness reduction of 0.5 metres water equivalent (m w.e.) during the hydrological year 2007/08. The new data continues the global trend in strong ice loss over the past few decades and brings the cumulative average thickness loss of the reference glaciers since 1980 at about 12 m w.e. (see Figures 1 and 2). All so far reported mass balance values, given in Table 3, are tentative.

Table 1: Overview on mass balance data 2007/08. Statistics are given for all reported glaciers (ALL) and for the available 'reference' glaciers with continuous long-term observation series (REF).

Mean annual mass balance (mm w.e.)
Minimum value (mm w.e.) -2340 -2340
Maximum value (mm w.e.) +1330 +1300
Standard deviation (mm w.e.) 800 901
Number of positive/reported balances 30/96 8/27

Table 2: Reference glaciers with continuous long-term observation series.

Mountain range Glaciers
Cascade Mtns. Place, South Cascade
Svalbard Austre Broeggerbreen, Midtre Lovénbreen
Andes Echaurren Norte
Alaska Gulkana, Wolverine
Scandinavia Engabreen, Alfotbreen, Nigardsbreen, Grasubreen, Storbreen, Hellstugubreen, Hardangerjoekulen, Storglaciaeren
Alps Saint Sorlin, Sarennes, Silvretta, Gries, Sonnblickkees, Vernagtferner, Kesselwandferner, Hintereisferner, Careser
Altai No. 125 (Vodopadniy), Maliy Aktru, Leviy Aktru
Caucasus Djankuat
Tien Shan Ts. Tuyuksuyskiy, Urumqihe S.No.1

The corresponding annual and cumulative mass balance results of this data set from glaciers in the Americas and Eurasia are visualized in the following two figures:

Figure 1: Mean annual mass balance of reference glaciers. pdf

Figure 2: Mean cumulative mass balance of all reported glaciers (black line) and the reference glaciers (red line).pdf

For more detailed analysis of the global mass balance dataset, see the following selected publications and references therein:

  • Braithwaite, R.J. 2002. Glacier mass balance: the first 50 years of international monitoring. Progr. Phys. Geogr., 26 (1), 76-95.

  • Cogley, J.G. and W.P. Adams. 1998. Mass balance of glaciers other than the ice sheets. J. Glaciol., 44 (147), 315-325.

  • Dyurgerov, M.B. 2002. Glacier mass balance and regime: data of measurements and analysis. Boulder, CO, University of Colorado, Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. INSTAAR Occasional Paper 55.

  • Dyurgerov, M.B. and M.F. Meier. 2005. Glaciers and the changing Earth system: a 2004 snapshot. Boulder, CO, University of Colorado, Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research. INSTAAR Occasional Paper 58.

  • Kaser, G., Cogley, J.G., Dyurgerov, M.B., Meier, M.F. and A. Ohmura. 2006. Mass balance of glaciers and ice caps: consensus estimates for 1961-2004. Geophys. Res. Lett., 33 (19), L19501.

  • Meier, M.F., Dyurgerov, M.B., Rick, U.K., O'Neel, S., Pfeffer, W.T., Anderson, R.S., Anderson, S.P. and A.F. Glazovsky. 2007. Glaciers dominate eustatic sea-level rise in the 21st century. Science, 317 (5841): 1064-1067.

  • Ohmura, A. 2006. Changes in mountain glaciers and ice caps during the 20th century. Ann. Glaciol., 43, 361-368.

  • WGMS. 2008. Global Glacier Changes: facts and figures. Zemp, M., Roer, I., Kääb, A., Hoelzle, M., Paul, F. and W. Haeberli (eds.), UNEP, World Glacier Monitoring Service, Zurich, Switzerland: 88 pp.

  • Zemp, M., Hoelzle, M. and W. Haeberli. 2009. Six decades of glacier mass balance observations - a review of the worldwide monitoring network. Annals of Glaciology, 50A018.

2   Preliminary mass balance data

Table 3: Reported preliminary mass balance values of the observation period 2007/08.

Name MB08
[mm w.e.]
Bahia del Diablo -530
Martial Este n.a.
Grosser Goldbergkees -651
Hintereisferner -1235
Jamtalferner -981
Kesselwandferner -444
Kleiner Fleisskees -623
Pasterzenkees -1421
Sonnblickkees -777
Vernagtferner -843
Wurtenkees -938
Chacaltaya -1549
Charquini sur 161
Zongo 257
Baby Glacier n.a.
Devon Ice Cap NW n.a.
Helm -2300
Meighen Ice Cap n.a.
Peyto -230
Place -490
White -778
Echaurren Norte -1710
Urumqihe S.No.1 -856
La Conejera (Sta Isabel) n.a.
Ritacuba Negro (La Cocuy) n.a.
Antizana 15 Alpha 337
Argentìere -1320
Gebroulaz -1050
Ossoue -120
Saint Sorlin -1810
Sarennes -2340
Mittivakkat n.a.
Freya -499
Breidamjökull E. B. n.a.
Bruarjökull -503
Dyngjujökull -24
Eyabakkajökull -1282
Hofsjökull E -790
Hofsjökull N -570
Hofsjökull SW -930
Koeldukvislarjökull -587
Langjökull Southern Dome -1842
Tungnaarjökull -1340
Chhota Shigri n.a.
Hamtah n.a.
Calderone 275
Careser -1952
Ciardoney -1510
Fontana Bianca -1246
Grand Etret -1363
Malavalle -900
Pendente -1484
Vedretta Lunga -1637
Hamaguri Yuki n.a.
Ts. Tuyuksuyskiy -1357
New Zealand
Brewster -1653
Aalfotbreen 690
Austdalsbreeen -70
Austre Broeggerbreen -130
Blomstolskar -1330
Breidalblikkbrea -300
Elisebreen -172
Engabreen 310
Graafjellsbreen -140
Graasubreen 90
Hansbreen 150
Hansebreen 250
Hardangerjoekulen 450
Hellstugubreen -60
Irenebreen -357
Kongsvegen 450
Langfjordjoekul -350
Midtre Lovenbreen -10
Nigardsbreen 1090
Rundvassbreen n.a.
Storbreen 110
Storglombreen n.a.
Svelgjabreen 730
Waldemarbreen -322
Artesonraju n.a.
Yanamarey n.a.
Djankuat -100
Garabashi -460
Leviy Aktru -810
Maliy Aktru -870
No. 125 (Vodopadniy) -720
Maladeta -37
Marmaglaciaeren 120
Rabots Glaciaer n.a.
Riukojietna n.a.
Storglaciaeren n.a.
Tarfalaglaciaeren n.a.
Basodino n.a.
Findelen -400
Gries n.a.
Pizol -731
Silvretta n.a.
Columbia (2057) 960
Daniels 410
Easton 450
Emmons -630
Foss 180
Gulkana -181
Ice Worm -100
Lemon Creek 800
Lower Curtis 120
Lynch 510
Nisqually -1080
Noisy Creek -290
North Klawatti -220
Rainbow 650
Sandalee -140
Sholes 200
Silver 260
South Cascade -200
Taku 950
Wolverine 1300
Yawning 480

last change 13/01/2010, igr