New study reveals drivers of lake evolution in mid-latitude Asia

A new study has revealed the drivers of hydrological changes in lake systems in mid-latitude Asia, providing reference for predicting and coping with future lake water fluctuations, according to Lanzhou University.

The study was carried out by a research team led by professor Li Guoqiang at the College of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Lanzhou University.

Understanding the mechanisms driving hydrological changes in arid regions of mid-latitude Asia over a range of time scales is crucial for making predictions for future changes in fragile desert-lake ecosystems, according to Li.

The team investigated the Ebinur Lake in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, northwest China. Li said the lake is fed by rivers originating from the glaciated Tianshan Mountains and terminates in the arid Junggar Basin, presenting a natural laboratory to explore lake evolution in context to Holocene climate evolution in mid-latitude Asia.

The researchers applied the single-grain K-feldspar dating method to reconstruct the lake’s evolution over the past 18,000 years.

The results showed that glacier meltwater, in combination with the variable delivery of Westerlies and East Asian summer monsoon precipitation, is responsible for asynchronous lake evolution trends across mid-latitude Asia.

Although natural climate change may lead to changes in lake water levels, the impact of human activities is also notable, said Li.

The results of the study have been published in the journal GSA Bulletin.

(Cover image via VCG)

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency