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Posts tagged Tibetan Plateau

Vastness of Tibetan Plateau; Cities of Northern India

27.4N 84.9E

May 20th, 2013 Category: Climate Change

India – May 19th, 2013

The populated cities of northern India (below) stand in contrast to the seemingly vacant terrain of the Tibetan Plateau (above), a vast, elevated plateau covering most of the Tibet Autonomous Region and Qinghai Province in western China, as well as part of Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir.

It stretches approximately 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) north to south and 2,500 kilometres (1,600 mi) east to west. With an average elevation exceeding 4,500 metres (14,800 ft), the Tibetan Plateau is sometimes called “the Roof of the World” and is the world’s highest and largest plateau, with an area of 2,500,000 square kilometres (970,000 sq mi).

The Tibetan Plateau contains the world’s third-largest store of ice. Experts have warned that the recent fast pace of melting and warmer temperatures will be good for agriculture and tourism in the short term; but issued a strong warning for the future: temperatures are rising four times faster than elsewhere in China, and the Tibetan glaciers are retreating at a higher speed than in any other part of the world. First, this will cause lakes to expand and bring floods and mudflows. In the long run, the glaciers are vital lifelines for Asian rivers, including the Indus and the Ganges. Once they vanish, water supplies in those regions will be in peril.

Haze Over Sichuan Basin, China

30.6N 104.0E

February 6th, 2013 Category: Clouds, Mountains

China – January 26th, 2013

The province of Sichuan, China, consists of two very geographically distinct parts. The eastern part of the province is mostly within the fertile Sichuan basin. Here, the basin is covered by a thick haze, likely the result of fires, dust and/or pollutants in the atmosphere. The western Sichuan consists of the numerous mountain ranges forming the easternmost part of the Tibetan Plateau. Here, some haze can be seen in the valleys, but with that small exception, the western part of the province is mostly clear.

Smoke in India, Lakes in Tibet

28.0N 84.0E

November 20th, 2012 Category: Fires, Lakes, Mountains

India – November 19th, 2012

 A cloud of smoke from fires in northern India (click here for previous images) creeps eastward along the foot of the Himalayas towards Bangladesh. The high mountains prevent it from blowing northward across Nepal, into Tibet, China. Visible in the upper half of the image is the Tibetan Lakes Region, a large area of hundreds of lakes dotted across the Tibetan Plateau.

Dense Smoke South of Himalayas, India – November 17th, 2012

27.5N 81.5E

November 17th, 2012 Category: Fires, Image of the day

India – November 15th, 2012

Smoke billowing forth from agricultural fires in the state of Punjab, northern India (click here for previous images), is so thick that it obscures the terrain below. In contrast, Nepal and the Tibetan Plateau, from which it is separated by the high peaks of the Himalayas, are visible with great clarity, with the exception of a small patch of clouds to the east.

Dust Storm in Taklamakan Desert, China

39.0N 89.1E

November 5th, 2012 Category: Deserts, Dust Storms

China – November 4th, 2012

A dust storm continues to blow sand and dust particles about the Tarim Basin, in northwestern China. While this image focuses on the eastern part of the desert, in the full image dust can also be seen over the western part and spreading northward. Also visible here are two lakes, the larger and slightly greener of which is Lake Ayakum, located near the northern boundary of the Tibetan Plateau, to the southeast of the Kunlun Mountains.

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