EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

What’s in a lake? Glacial Lake Outburst Floods in the Peruvian Andes.

Joanne Wood1, Stephan Harrison1, Ryan Wilson2, Neil Glasser3, John Reynolds4, Alejandro Diaz Moreno4, Adam Emmer5, Simon Cool6, Juan Carlos Torres7, Adriana Caballero7, Harrinson Jara7, Christian Yarleque7, Enver Melgarejo7, Hilbert Villafane7, Julia Araujo7, Efrain Turpo7, and Tito Tinoco8
Joanne Wood et al.
  • 1University of Exeter, Centre for Geography and Environmental Science, Penryn, UK (
  • 2University of Huddersfield, Department of Biological and Geographical Sciences, UK
  • 3Aberystwyth University, Faculty of Earth and Life Sciences, Department of Geography and Earth Sciences, UK
  • 4Reynolds International Ltd, Mold, UK
  • 5University of Graz, Austria
  • 6University of Dundee, Geography and Environmental Science, School of Social Sciences, UK
  • 7INAIGEM, Peru
  • 8UNASAM, Peru

Climate change is resulting in mass loss and the retreat of glaciers in the Andes, exposing steep valley sides, over-deepened valley bottoms, and creating glacial lakes behind moraine dams. Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) present the biggest risk posed by glacier recession in Peru. Understanding the characteristics of lakes that have failed in the past will provide an aid to identifying those lakes that might fail in the future and narrow down which lakes are of greatest interest for reducing the risks to local vulnerable populations. 

Using a newly created lake inventory for the Peruvian Andes (Wood et al., in review) and a comprehensive GLOF inventory (unpublished) we investigate lakes from which GLOFs have occurred in the past. This is to establish which physical components of the glacial lake systems are common to those lakes that have failed previously and which can be identified remotely, easily and objectively, in order to improve existing methods of hazard assessment.

How to cite: Wood, J., Harrison, S., Wilson, R., Glasser, N., Reynolds, J., Diaz Moreno, A., Emmer, A., Cool, S., Torres, J. C., Caballero, A., Jara, H., Yarleque, C., Melgarejo, E., Villafane, H., Araujo, J., Turpo, E., and Tinoco, T.: What’s in a lake? Glacial Lake Outburst Floods in the Peruvian Andes., EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-12241,, 2021.

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