Dartmouth Events

Earth Science Seminar - Dr. Gwenn Flowers, from SFU (Canada).

Decoding the Drivers of Glacial Change: Investigating the Interplay of Internal Dynamics and External Forcing in the St. Elias Mountains of Northern Canada. 1:10pm -2:10pm

Thursday, February 2, 2023
1:00pm – 2:15pm
Wilder 104
Intended Audience(s): Alumni, Faculty, Postdoc, Staff, Students-Graduate, Students-Undergraduate
Categories: Arts and Sciences, Lectures & Seminars

Detection and attribution are common themes in studies of environmental change, including in studies of the terrestrial cryosphere, where impacts range from local hazards to regional water supply to global sea level rise. Change is afoot in the vast icefields that straddle the Alaska-Yukon-British Columbia border, where sustained thinning of the ~30,000 km2 ice cover has had unanticipated local consequences and is making globally significant contributions to sea level. This region also harbors a high concentration of glaciers whose internal dynamics have the potential to confound the climate signal on societally relevant timescales. With the aim of disentangling internal versus external drivers of glacier change, toward improved attribution of observed changes on short spatio-temporal scales, we use this area as a natural laboratory in which to better understand fundamental processes that define the boundary conditions at the ice–atmosphere and ice–bedrock interfaces. We explore the flow and thermal regimes of land-terminating glaciers in the region, including the environmental and geological controls on glacier “surging”, and touch on the information revealed and archived by these processes. Using geophysical field measurements, combined with statistical analysis and numerical modeling, we are beginning to disentangle the contributions of the geologic substrate, environmental setting, internal ice dynamics and climate forcing to observed glacier behavior in this globally significant ice-rich part of the world.

Visit our seminar webpage.

For more information, contact:
Marisa Palucis

Events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.