New Delhi: Most glaciers in the Indian
Himalayas are retreating, but there is "no scientific
evidence" to link this to climate change and that they will
vanish in near future as propagated by the West, Environment
Minister Jairam Ramesh said here today.
Releasing a discussion paper that puts together recent
studies on glaciers by Indian scientists, he said, "The
scientists may debate the causes, but the health of the
glaciers is very poor and the level of debris has reached
"The glacier mass balance has certainly become
negative as we are getting less and less snowfall. While most
of the 9,500-odd glaciers in the Indian Himalayas are
retreating, some, like the Siachen Glacier, are advancing.
Some, like the Gangotri glacier, have reduced their rate
of retreat," the Minister said, adding most of the glaciers in
trouble are the small ones.
"The West has been propagating that the Himalayan
glaciers will vanish in the near future say in 2035 but the
fact is there is a serious lack of scientific data on the
Himalayan glaciers -- only about 10 of them have been studied
at all," Ramesh explained.
He said there has been only one monitoring station so
far located at Srinagar and to give impetus to research in
glaciology, at least 15 such stations will be set up in the
Himalayan states such as Uttarakhand and Sikkim.