Mountain hazards in Kyrgyzstan

October 15, 2013

Prof. John M. Reynolds, RIL’s MD, attended the Mountain Hazards 2013 conference in Cholpon-Alto, on the northern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul in Kyrgyzstan 16th-18th September 2013. He presented one of four keynote lectures (‘On the geopolitics of managing glacial hazards’) and a more technical talk entitled ‘Towards defining what constitutes a ‘hazardous’ glacial lake’. The meeting was very high profile in Kyrgyzstan with senior members of the Government and the Vice-President of the National Academy of Science attending the entire conference. Prof. Reynolds was also asked to give an interview for the Kyrgyz Parliament TV channel. Following two days of very interesting technical presentations, delegates took part in a field excursion en route back to Bishkek looking at some spectacular field exposures illustrating the influence of tectonic processes on the area’s landscape. The trip also introduced delegates to the conundrum of Lake Issyk-Kul, which is the third deepest lake in the world, is saline despite 22 fresh-water rivers draining into it and yet has no outlet drainage!

The picture shows the northern flank of the Tien Shan mountains viewed across Lake Issyk-Kul, Kyrgyzstan.