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Glacier Change in the Geladandong Area of the Tibetan Plateau Monitored by Remote Sensing

LU An\|xin,\ YAO Tan\|dong,\ LIU Shi\|yin,\ DING Liang\|fu,\ LI Gang (Key Laboratory of Ice Core and Cold Regions Environment, CAREERI, CAS, Lanzhou Gansu 73000, China)  
Glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau play an important role in the earths climatic system. Regular survey of glacier change is almost impossible in most parts of the plateau. Remote sensing is a primary technique and becomes the only means in many places. GIS provides an efficient tool to analyze the status and the change of glaciers. In the paper, the Geladandong area, the headwaters of the Yangtze River, was selected as the test area. Glacier variation during the Little Ice Age (LIA) maximum, in 1969 and 2000 were analyzed by means of aerial photos, satellite image, topographical map and the derived digital elevation model (DEM). The results indicate that the glacier area had decreased about 5\^2% from the Little Ice Age Maximum to 1969 and had decreased about 1.7% from 1969 to 2000. However, the glaciers seem almost steady in the test area in consideration of glacier number only.
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