Glacial hazards projects

RIL have recently undertaken a number of glacial hazards projects. Several projects on which RIL staff have worked are presented as case studies.


The outwash plain from the Colonia Glacier with deposits from a series of GLOFs since 2008, Northern Patagonian Icefield, Chile (October 2010).


The source area of the rock/ice avalanche that generated the 28+m high avalanche push wave into Lake 513 at Hualcán, Cordillera Blanca, Peru. (Photo: C. Portocarrero, April 2010).


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Recent and current glacial hazards projects:

  • Disaster Risk Management for the hydro-power sector in the South Asian Region. The World Bank (2014 on)
  • Diamer Basha Dam Project, Pakistan. MWH, Chicago, USA. Glacial hazard review for the Upper Indus Basin (2014-17) as part of a USAID-funded Environmental and Social Impact Assessment
  • Rolwaling Diversion Tunnel Project, Nepal. Lahmeyer, Germany (2015-16). Glacial hazard assessment of Tsho Rolpa and the Rolwaling catchment and post-earthquake re-assessment (2016)
  • Northern Patagonian Icefield and associated glacial hazards. Field inspection of the Colonia and Baker Rivers, which are associated with repeated Glacial Lake Outburst Floods from the Northern Patagonian Ice-field (2009); and of Exploradores Glacier (2017 on)
  • Lake 513, Hualcán, and other sites, Cordillera Blanca, Peru. Ongoing collaboration with Peruvian agencies (from 2009 on, current)
  • Review of international glacial hazard assessment guidelines (ongoing). This project has its own web page
  • Flash flood forensic analysis and GLOF study as part of an insurance claim process for the Upper Bhote Koshi HEP scheme, northern Nepal (2017-18)
  • Dam Safety Panel of Experts (DSPoE) for the Upper Arun HEP scheme (funded by The World Bank) for scrutiny of GLOF assessment and wider geohazard advice (2019-2021)
  • Glacial Hazards training for the hydropower sector in Tajikistan funded by the European Bank of Regional Development (2020)
  • Structural glaciological analysis of debris-covered glaciers in relation to glacial hazards – KESS II PhD project co-funded by RIL at Aberystwyth University, UK (2019-22)



"CEGS have known of Reynolds International Ltd, previously Reynolds Geo-Sciences Ltd, since the mid-1990s and have utilised their services over the years for specific surveying in the former underground coal and iron ore fields of West Cumbria. As a lead consultant, we have used Reynolds International to successfully locate and define both the underground workings and the mine entries that pose a hazard to the built environment, especially shafts in the iron ore workings. Additionally, we have also enrolled on the CPD training courses that are organised by Professor John Reynolds and these provide an invaluable update to our professional skills. We will continue to use Reynolds International as our preferred specialist Geophysical consultancy because of the consistent high professional standards that are applied to every project."

Dennis R. E. Dickins, CEGS, Cumbria

"The British Embassy, Bucharest, has been working with Professor John Reynolds, of Reynolds International Ltd, since 2008 in order to ensure that the Embassy’s earthquake and emergency planning is up to date; and that all staff, dependents and the British community, for which the Embassy has a responsibility, are briefed on the causes, the preparations and the relevant actions in the event of an earthquake. Professors Reynolds’s knowledge, advice and guidance has been invaluable in ensuring that the embassy’s plan is as up to date and in an as workable format as possible. His knowledge is second to none and his guidance is clear concise and in an understandable format."

B A Davidson – HM Consul, Head of Corporate Services, Bucharest, Romania

"The earthquake preparedness training course provided by Professor John M. Reynolds for BAT Romania’ employees during 3 days in February this year was a well designed and tailored course given the high seismic hazard area where Romania is located. The main aim of the course was to provide our employees with necessary information to help them to reduce their own vulnerability at work, in their out-of-work activities and in their family lives. I was very pleased with the results of the training and, most importantly, I have received very positive feedback from participants. I recommend this course for other commercial organizations in Romania or abroad."

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