Journal cover Journal topic
The Cryosphere An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
The Cryosphere, 10, 713-725, 2016
https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-10-713-2016
© Author(s) 2016. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
21 Mar 2016
Glacier change over the last century, Caucasus Mountains, Georgia, observed from old topographical maps, Landsat and ASTER satellite imagery
Levan G. Tielidze Department of Geomorphology, Vakhushti Bagrationi Institute of Geography, Ivane, Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University, 6 Tamarashvili st., 0177 Tbilisi, Georgia
Abstract. Changes in the area and number of glaciers in the Georgian Caucasus Mountains were examined over the last century, by comparing recent Landsat and ASTER images (2014) with older topographical maps (1911, 1960) along with middle and high mountain meteorological stations data. Total glacier area decreased by 8.1 ± 1.8 % (0.2 ± 0.04 % yr−1) or by 49.9 ± 10.6 km2 from 613.6 ± 9.8 km2 to 563.7 ± 11.3 km2 during 1911–1960, while the number of glaciers increased from 515 to 786. During 1960–2014, the total ice area decreased by 36.9 ± 2.2 % (0.7 ± 0.04 % yr−1) or by 207.9 ± 9.8 km2 from 563.7 ± 11.3 km2 to 355.8 ± 8.3 km2, while glacier numbers decreased from 786 to 637. In total, the area of Georgia glaciers reduced by 42.0 ± 2.0 % (0.4 ± 0.02 % yr−1) between 1911 and 2014. The eastern Caucasus section had the highest retreat rate of 67.3 ± 2.0 % (0.7 ± 0.02 % yr−1) over this period, while the central part of Georgian Caucasus had the lowest, 34.6 ± 1.8 % (0.3 ± 0.01 % yr−1), with the western Caucasus intermediate at 42.8 ± 2.7 % (0.4 ± 0.03 % yr−1).

Citation: Tielidze, L. G.: Glacier change over the last century, Caucasus Mountains, Georgia, observed from old topographical maps, Landsat and ASTER satellite imagery, The Cryosphere, 10, 713-725, https://doi.org/10.5194/tc-10-713-2016, 2016.
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This article presents the percentage and quantitative changes in the number and area of glaciers for all Georgian Caucasus in the years 1911–1960–2014, by individual river basins, by comparing recent Landsat and ASTER images (2014) with older topographical maps (1911, 1960) along with middle and high mountain meteorological stations data.
This article presents the percentage and quantitative changes in the number and area of glaciers...
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