New report for glacier investigations in 2016
NVE presents results from measurements on Norwegian glaciers in 2016 in a new report. The report describes mainly measurements of glacier mass balance and glacier length changes. In addition there is information on measurements of glacier dynamics and ice thickness, jøkulhlaups and meteorological measurements at selected glaciers. The report also describes measurements from Svartisen Subglacial Laboratory beneath Engabreen.
In 2016 mass balance was measured on fourteen glaciers in Norway – three in northern Norway and eleven in southern Norway. Six of the glaciers in southern Norway (Ålfotbreen, Nigardsbreen, Rembesdalskåka, Storbreen, Hellstugubreen and Gråsubreen) and one glacier in northern Norway (Engabreen), have measurements back to 1971 or earlier. These seven glaciers with mass balance series longer than thirty years are classified as reference glaciers by the World Glacier Monitoring Service.
The winter balance for four of the reference glaciers was greater than the reference period 1971-2000 average, and three were lower than average. Nigardsbreen had the greatest relative winter balance with 124 % of the reference period and Storbreen had the lowest with 72 %. The summer balance was greater than the average for all seven reference glaciers. Ålfotbreen had the greatest relative summer balance with 142 % of the reference period and Gråsubreen had the lowest with 110 %. Consequently, the annual balance was negative for six of the reference glaciers. Only Nigardsbreen had positive mass balance.
Glacier length change
Glacier length changes were measured at 25 glaciers in southern Norway and 11 glaciers in northern Norway. Thirty of the glacier outlets had a decrease in length, four were unchanged and two outlets had a small advance. The greatest retreats were observed at Gråfjellsbrea (117 m), an outlet from southern Folgefonna ice cap, Langfjordjøkelen (96 m) in western Finnmark and Nigardsbreen (70 m), an outlet from Jostedalsbreen ice cap.