RIL will partner with Aberystwyth and Exeter universities in the UK and with the Austral University of Chile, Valdivia, in Chile for a 2-year research project ‘Glacial hazards in Chile: Processes, Assessment, Mitigation and Risk Management Strategies’ as from January 2016 until January 2018.
The work consists of three themes: (1) To understand the physical processes that govern the development of Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) in Chile; (2) To estimate the effects of GLOFs on society and the economy of Chile; and (3) To assess the potential future implications for GLOFs in Chile and provide a framework that can be applied to other lower income countries globally. In addition to desk-based analysis of remote sensing imagery, RIL will be involved in undertaking field work around the North Patagonian Icefield (see picture) in January 2017. The results of the work are due to be shared through a dissemination workshop scheduled to be held in Kathmandu, Nepal, in January 2018. The award of this research funding helps cement RIL’s role as world leader in GLOF studies and builds on work previously undertaken by Prof. John M. Reynolds, MD of RIL, in Chile between 2002 and 2010. It also complements other glacial hazards work currently being undertaken by RIL in Pakistan and Nepal.