In a research conducted by scientists from the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, it has been revealed that Ladakh Himalayas has been plagued by a 35,000-year-old history of river erosion. The scientific study further identified the main areas of erosion.
The research has been published in the Global and Planetary Changes journal. The research showcased how the rivers functioned in a longer time frame in Ladakh Himalayas areas that were dry. In addition to this, it also studied on how rivers responded to different climatic conditions and a proper understanding of water and sediment routing.
According to reports, the research will help authorities understand the reasons behind erosion because of rivers and sedimentation. River-borne erosion and sedimentation are factors that lead to large riverine plains which becomes a place to stay for civilizations.
Researchers analyse Zanskar River
In addition to this, the team of researchers working on the project, studied where the rivers drying the Himalaya and its land erode the most. One of the biggest tributaries is the Zanskar River in the upper Indus catchment.
The study suggests that Zanskar catchment was analysed to try and understand the changing land forms in zones with varying climate using Morpho stratigraphy and study of land such as valley terraces. According to reports, the study suggested that the valley of Padam(48 sq. km), in the upper part of Zanskar has large amount of sediments such as gravel, sand or silt in these land forms.
It was later revealed that the major reasons responsible for sediment erosion are disappearance of ice from a glacial region and the Indian summer-monsoon derived condensation of atmospheric water vapor in sources of rivers.
This above-mentioned result happened even after the presence of Geomorphic barriers present between the upper and lower catchments of the river.
Curated By Ruchit Rastogi