Characteristics Of Permafrost In Siberia

A.D. Duchkov

Institute of Geophysics SB RAS, 3, pr. Koptyug, Novosibirsk, 630090, Russia

Abstract: Permafrost is a huge natural "thermometer" sensitive to significant changes in climate. During the Late Pleistocene permafrost reached as far south as 48-49 °N, covering Siberia. During Holocene warming the extent of the permafrost has greatly decreased. This process may now be intensified due to global warming of the climate during the 20-21 centuries. Siberian meteorological stations show that the last 30-40 years are characterized by an air temperature increase of 0.02-0.05 °C per year. If this warming trend is maintained the overall temperature increase in northern Siberia may reach 1.2-2 °C by 2050. In this case the southern permafrost border will be moved to the north by 300400 km. Calculations were made to estimate possible changes in permafrost parameters under the influence of climatic variations. In some blocks it is possible that frozen rocks will thaw from the surface to a depth of 12-17 m by 2100.

Key words: Russia, Siberia, thermal and phase state of permafrost, temperature of rocks, meteorological stations, climate warming, temperature field modeling, degradation of permafrost

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