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The Tibetan Plateau (Tibetan:བོད་ས་མཐོ།, Wylie: bod sa mtho), also known as the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau or the Qing–Zang Plateau (Chinese:青藏高原; pinyin: Qīng–Zàng Gāoyuán) or as the Himalayan Plateau in India, is a vast elevated plateau in South Asia, Central Asia and East Asia, covering most of the Tibet Autonomous Region, most of Qinghai, Northwestern Yunnan, Western half of Sichuan, Southern Gansu provinces in Western China, southern Xinjiang, the Indian regions of Ladakh and Lahaul and Spiti (Himachal Pradesh) as well as Gilgit-Baltistan in Pakistan, Bhutan, northern Nepal, eastern Tajikistan and southern Kyrgyzstan. It stretches approximately 1,000 kilometres (620 mi) north to south and 2,500 kilometres (1,600 mi) east to west. It is the world's highest and largest plateau above sea level, with an area of 2,500,000 square kilometres (970,000 sq mi) (about five times the size of Metropolitan France). With an average elevation exceeding 4,500 metres (14,800 ft) and being surrounded by imposing mountain ranges that harbor the world's two highest summits, Mount Everest and K2, the Tibetan Plateau is often referred to as "the Roof of the World".

Tibetan Plateau
青藏高原 (Qīng–Zàng Gāoyuán, Qinghai–Tibet Plateau)
The Tibetan Plateau lies between the Himalayan range to the south and the Taklamakan Desert to the north. (Composite image)
Dimensions
Length2,500 km (1,600 mi)
Width1,000 km (620 mi)
Area2,500,000 km2 (970,000 sq mi)
Geography
Tibetan Plateau and surrounding areas above 1600 m
LocationPeople's Republic of China (Tibet, Qinghai, Western Sichuan, Northern Yunnan, Southern Xinjiang, Western Gansu)
India (Ladakh, Lahaul & Spiti, Northern Arunachal Pradesh, Northern Sikkim)
Pakistan (Baltistan)
Afghanistan (Wakhan Corridor)
Nepal (Northern Nepal)
Bhutan
Tajikistan (Eastern Tajikistan)
Kyrgyzstan (Southern Kyrgyzstan)
Range coordinates33°N88°E /33°N 88°E /33; 88Coordinates: 33°N88°E /33°N 88°E /33; 88

The Tibetan Plateau contains the headwaters of the drainage basins of most of the streams and rivers in surrounding regions, including the three longest rivers in Asia (the Yellow, Yangtze, and Mekong). Its tens of thousands of glaciers and other geographical and ecological features serve as a "water tower" storing water and maintaining flow. It is sometimes termed the Third Pole because its ice fields contain the largest reserve of fresh water outside the polar regions. The impact of climate change on the Tibetan Plateau is of ongoing scientific interest.

Contents

The Tibetan Plateau is surrounded by the massive mountain ranges of high-mountain Asia. The plateau is bordered to the south by the inner Himalayan range, to the north by the Kunlun Mountains, which separate it from the Tarim Basin, and to the northeast by the Qilian Mountains, which separate the plateau from the Hexi Corridor and Gobi Desert. To the east and southeast the plateau gives way to the forested gorge and ridge geography of the mountainous headwaters of the Salween, Mekong, and Yangtze rivers in northwest Yunnan and western Sichuan (the Hengduan Mountains). In the west, the curve of the rugged Karakoram range of northern Kashmir embraces the plateau. The Indus River originates in the western Tibetan Plateau in the vicinity of Lake Manasarovar.

Tibetan Buddhist stupa and houses outside the town of Ngawa, on the Tibetan Plateau.

The Tibetan Plateau is bounded in the north by a broad escarpment where the altitude drops from around 5,000 metres (16,000 ft) to 1,500 metres (4,900 ft) over a horizontal distance of less than 150 kilometres (93 mi). Along the escarpment is a range of mountains. In the west, the Kunlun Mountains separate the plateau from the Tarim Basin. About halfway across the Tarim the bounding range becomes the Altyn-Tagh and the Kunluns, by convention, continue somewhat to the south. In the 'V' formed by this split is the western part of the Qaidam Basin. The Altyn-Tagh ends near the Dangjin pass on the DunhuangGolmud road. To the west are short ranges called the Danghe, Yema, Shule, and Tulai Nanshans. The easternmost range is the Qilian Mountains. The line of mountains continues east of the plateau as the Qinling, which separates the Ordos Plateau from Sichuan. North of the mountains runs the Gansu or Hexi Corridor which was the main silk-road route from China proper to the West.

The plateau is a high-altitude arid steppe interspersed with mountain ranges and large brackish lakes. Annual precipitation ranges from 100 to 300 millimetres (3.9 to 11.8 in) and falls mainly as hail. The southern and eastern edges of the steppe have grasslands that can sustainably support populations of nomadic herdsmen, although frost occurs for six months of the year. Permafrost occurs over extensive parts of the plateau. Proceeding to the north and northwest, the plateau becomes progressively higher, colder, and drier, until reaching the remote Changtang region in the northwestern part of the plateau. Here the average altitude exceeds 5,000 metres (16,000 ft) and winter temperatures can drop to −40 °C (−40 °F). As a result of this extremely inhospitable environment, the Changthang region (together with the adjoining Kekexili region) is the least populous region in Asia and the third least populous area in the world after Antarctica and northern Greenland.

NASA satellite image of the south-eastern area of Tibetan Plateau. Brahmaputra River is in the lower right.
This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it.(January 2011)
Yamdrok Lake is one of the three largest sacred lakes in Tibet.

The geological history of the Tibetan Plateau is closely related to that of the Himalayas. The Himalayas belong to the Alpine Orogeny and are therefore among the younger mountain ranges on the planet, consisting mostly of uplifted sedimentary and metamorphic rock. Their formation is a result of a continental collision or orogeny along the convergent boundary between the Indo-Australian Plate and the Eurasian Plate.

The collision began in the Upper Cretaceous period about 70 million years ago, when the north-moving Indo-Australian Plate, moving at about 15 cm (6 in) per year, collided with the Eurasian Plate. About 50 million years ago, this fast-moving Indo-Australian plate had completely closed the Tethys Ocean, the existence of which has been determined by sedimentary rocks settled on the ocean floor, and the volcanoes that fringed its edges. Since these sediments were light, they crumpled into mountain ranges rather than sinking to the floor. The Indo-Australian plate continues to be driven horizontally below the Tibetan Plateau, which forces the plateau to move upwards; the plateau is still rising at a rate of approximately 5 mm (0.2 in) per year (although erosion reduces the actual increase in height).

Much of the Tibetan Plateau is of relatively low relief. The cause of this is debated among geologists. Some argue that the Tibetan Plateau is an uplifted peneplain formed at low altitude, while others argue that the low relief stems from erosion and infill of topographic depressions that occurred at already high elevations.

The current tectonics of the plateau is much debated. The two end-member models are the block model, in which the crust of the plateau is formed of several blocks with little internal deformation separated by major strike-slip faults. In the alternative continuum model, the plateau is affected by distributed deformation resulting from flow within the crust.

Yangbajain valley to the north of Lhasa

The Tibetan Plateau supports a variety of ecosystems, most of them classified as montane grasslands. While parts of the plateau feature an alpine tundra-like environment, other areas feature monsoon-influenced shrublands and forests. Species diversity is generally reduced on the plateau due to the elevation and low precipitation. The Tibetan Plateau hosts the Tibetan wolf, and species of snow leopard, wild yak, wild donkey, cranes, vultures, hawks, geese, snakes, and water buffalo. One notable animal is the high-altitude jumping spider, that can live at elevations of over 6,500 metres (21,300 ft).

Ecoregions found on the Tibetan Plateau, as defined by the World Wide Fund for Nature, are as follows:

Pastoral nomads camping near Namtso.
Main article: History of Tibet
The old town of Gyantse and surrounding fields.

Nomads on the Tibetan Plateau and in the Himalayas are the remainders of nomadic practices historically once widespread in Asia and Africa. Pastoral nomads constitute about 40% of the ethnic Tibetan population. The presence of nomadic peoples on the plateau is predicated on their adaptation to survival on the world's grassland by raising livestock rather than crops, which are unsuitable to the terrain. Archaeological evidence suggests that the earliest human occupation of the plateau occurred between 30,000 and 40,000 years ago. Since colonization of the Tibetan Plateau, Tibetan culture has adapted and flourished in the western, southern, and eastern regions of the plateau. The northern portion, the Changtang, is generally too high and cold to support permanent population. One of the most notable civilizations to have developed on the Tibetan Plateau is the Tibetan Empire from the 7th century to the 9th century AD.

Role in monsoons

Main article: Monsoon
Natural-colour satellite image of the Tibetan Plateau

Monsoons are caused by the different amplitudes of surface temperature seasonal cycles between land and oceans. This differential warming occurs because heating rates differ between land and water. Ocean heating is distributed vertically through a "mixed layer" that may be 50 meters deep through the action of wind and buoyancy-generated turbulence, whereas the land surface conducts heat slowly, with the seasonal signal penetrating only a meter or so. Additionally, the specific heat capacity of liquid water is significantly greater than that of most materials that make up land. Together, these factors mean that the heat capacity of the layer participating in the seasonal cycle is much larger over the oceans than over land, with the consequence that the land warms and cools faster than the ocean. In turn, air over the land warms faster and reaches a higher temperature than does air over the ocean. The warmer air over land tends to rise, creating an area of low pressure. The pressure anomaly then causes a steady wind to blow toward the land, which brings the moist air over the ocean surface with it. Rainfall is then increased by the presence of the moist ocean air. The rainfall is stimulated by a variety of mechanisms, such as low-level air being lifted upwards by mountains, surface heating, convergence at the surface, divergence aloft, or from storm-produced outflows near the surface. When such lifting occurs, the air cools due to expansion in lower pressure, which in turn produces condensation and precipitation.

In winter, the land cools off quickly, but the ocean maintains the heat longer. The hot air over the ocean rises, creating a low-pressure area and a breeze from land to ocean while a large area of drying high pressure is formed over the land, increased by wintertime cooling. Monsoons are similar to sea and land breezes, a term usually referring to the localized, diurnal cycle of circulation near coastlines everywhere, but they are much larger in scale, stronger and seasonal. The seasonal monsoon wind shift and weather associated with the heating and cooling of the Tibetan plateau is the strongest such monsoon on Earth.

The Himalayas as seen from space looking south from over the Tibetan Plateau.
Midui Glacier in Nyingchi

Today, Tibet is an important heating surface of the atmosphere. However, during the Last Glacial Maximum, an approximately 2,400,000 square kilometres (930,000 sq mi) ice sheet covered the plateau. Due to its great extent, this glaciation in the subtropics was an important element of radiative forcing. With a much lower latitude, the ice in Tibet reflected at least four times more radiation energy per unit area into space than ice at higher latitudes. Thus, while the modern plateau heats the overlying atmosphere, during the Last Ice Age it helped to cool it.

This cooling had multiple effects on regional climate. Without the thermal low pressure caused by the heating, there was no monsoon over the Indian subcontinent. This lack of monsoon caused extensive rainfall over the Sahara, expansion of the Thar Desert, more dust deposited into the Arabian Sea, and a lowering of the biotic life zones on the Indian subcontinent. Animals responded to this shift in climate, with the Javan rusa migrating into India.

In addition, the glaciers in Tibet created meltwater lakes in the Qaidam Basin, the Tarim Basin, and the Gobi Desert, despite the strong evaporation caused by the low latitude. Silt and clay from the glaciers accumulated in these lakes; when the lakes dried at the end of the ice age, the silt and clay were blown by the downslope wind off the Plateau. These airborne fine grains produced the enormous amount of loess in the Chinese lowlands.

Effects of climate change

The Tibetan Plateau contains the world's third-largest store of ice. Qin Dahe, the former head of the China Meteorological Administration, issued the following assessment in 2009, though this opinion is now over a decade old:

Temperatures are rising four times faster than elsewhere in China, and the Tibetan glaciers are retreating at a higher speed than in any other part of the world. ... In the short term, this will cause lakes to expand and bring floods and mudflows. ... In the long run, the glaciers are vital lifelines for Asian rivers, including the Indus and the Ganges. Once they vanish, water supplies in those regions will be in peril.

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Tibetan Plateau Article Talk Language Watch Edit The Tibetan Plateau Tibetan བ ད ས མཐ Wylie bod sa mtho also known as the Qinghai Tibet Plateau 1 or the Qing Zang Plateau 2 Chinese 青藏高原 pinyin Qing Zang Gaoyuan or as the Himalayan Plateau in India 3 4 is a vast elevated plateau in South Asia Central Asia 5 6 7 8 and East Asia 9 10 11 12 covering most of the Tibet Autonomous Region most of Qinghai Northwestern Yunnan Western half of Sichuan Southern Gansu provinces in Western China southern Xinjiang the Indian regions of Ladakh and Lahaul and Spiti Himachal Pradesh as well as Gilgit Baltistan in Pakistan Bhutan northern Nepal eastern Tajikistan and southern Kyrgyzstan It stretches approximately 1 000 kilometres 620 mi north to south and 2 500 kilometres 1 600 mi east to west It is the world s highest and largest plateau above sea level with an area of 2 500 000 square kilometres 970 000 sq mi about five times the size of Metropolitan France 13 With an average elevation exceeding 4 500 metres 14 800 ft and being surrounded by imposing mountain ranges that harbor the world s two highest summits Mount Everest and K2 the Tibetan Plateau is often referred to as the Roof of the World Tibetan Plateau青藏高原 Qing Zang Gaoyuan Qinghai Tibet Plateau The Tibetan Plateau lies between the Himalayan range to the south and the Taklamakan Desert to the north Composite image DimensionsLength2 500 km 1 600 mi Width1 000 km 620 mi Area2 500 000 km2 970 000 sq mi GeographyTibetan Plateau and surrounding areas above 1600 mLocation People s Republic of China Tibet Qinghai Western Sichuan Northern Yunnan Southern Xinjiang Western Gansu India Ladakh Lahaul amp Spiti Northern Arunachal Pradesh Northern Sikkim Pakistan Baltistan Afghanistan Wakhan Corridor Nepal Northern Nepal Bhutan Tajikistan Eastern Tajikistan Kyrgyzstan Southern Kyrgyzstan Range coordinates33 N 88 E 33 N 88 E 33 88 Coordinates 33 N 88 E 33 N 88 E 33 88 The Tibetan Plateau contains the headwaters of the drainage basins of most of the streams and rivers in surrounding regions including the three longest rivers in Asia the Yellow Yangtze and Mekong Its tens of thousands of glaciers and other geographical and ecological features serve as a water tower storing water and maintaining flow It is sometimes termed the Third Pole because its ice fields contain the largest reserve of fresh water outside the polar regions The impact of climate change on the Tibetan Plateau is of ongoing scientific interest 14 15 16 17 Contents 1 Description 2 Geology and geological history 3 Environment 4 Human history 5 Impact on other regions 5 1 Role in monsoons 6 Glaciology the Ice Age and at present 6 1 Effects of climate change 7 See also 8 References 8 1 Citations 8 2 Sources 9 External linksDescription EditThe Tibetan Plateau is surrounded by the massive mountain ranges 18 of high mountain Asia The plateau is bordered to the south by the inner Himalayan range to the north by the Kunlun Mountains which separate it from the Tarim Basin and to the northeast by the Qilian Mountains which separate the plateau from the Hexi Corridor and Gobi Desert To the east and southeast the plateau gives way to the forested gorge and ridge geography of the mountainous headwaters of the Salween Mekong and Yangtze rivers in northwest Yunnan and western Sichuan the Hengduan Mountains In the west the curve of the rugged Karakoram range of northern Kashmir embraces the plateau The Indus River originates in the western Tibetan Plateau in the vicinity of Lake Manasarovar Tibetan Buddhist stupa and houses outside the town of Ngawa on the Tibetan Plateau The Tibetan Plateau is bounded in the north by a broad escarpment where the altitude drops from around 5 000 metres 16 000 ft to 1 500 metres 4 900 ft over a horizontal distance of less than 150 kilometres 93 mi Along the escarpment is a range of mountains In the west the Kunlun Mountains separate the plateau from the Tarim Basin About halfway across the Tarim the bounding range becomes the Altyn Tagh and the Kunluns by convention continue somewhat to the south In the V formed by this split is the western part of the Qaidam Basin The Altyn Tagh ends near the Dangjin pass on the Dunhuang Golmud road To the west are short ranges called the Danghe Yema Shule and Tulai Nanshans The easternmost range is the Qilian Mountains The line of mountains continues east of the plateau as the Qinling which separates the Ordos Plateau from Sichuan North of the mountains runs the Gansu or Hexi Corridor which was the main silk road route from China proper to the West The plateau is a high altitude arid steppe interspersed with mountain ranges and large brackish lakes Annual precipitation ranges from 100 to 300 millimetres 3 9 to 11 8 in and falls mainly as hail The southern and eastern edges of the steppe have grasslands that can sustainably support populations of nomadic herdsmen although frost occurs for six months of the year Permafrost occurs over extensive parts of the plateau Proceeding to the north and northwest the plateau becomes progressively higher colder and drier until reaching the remote Changtang region in the northwestern part of the plateau Here the average altitude exceeds 5 000 metres 16 000 ft and winter temperatures can drop to 40 C 40 F As a result of this extremely inhospitable environment the Changthang region together with the adjoining Kekexili region is the least populous region in Asia and the third least populous area in the world after Antarctica and northern Greenland NASA satellite image of the south eastern area of Tibetan Plateau Brahmaputra River is in the lower right Geology and geological history EditThis section needs expansion You can help by adding to it January 2011 Main article Geology of the Himalaya Yamdrok Lake is one of the three largest sacred lakes in Tibet The geological history of the Tibetan Plateau is closely related to that of the Himalayas The Himalayas belong to the Alpine Orogeny and are therefore among the younger mountain ranges on the planet consisting mostly of uplifted sedimentary and metamorphic rock Their formation is a result of a continental collision or orogeny along the convergent boundary between the Indo Australian Plate and the Eurasian Plate The collision began in the Upper Cretaceous period about 70 million years ago when the north moving Indo Australian Plate moving at about 15 cm 6 in per year collided with the Eurasian Plate About 50 million years ago this fast moving Indo Australian plate had completely closed the Tethys Ocean the existence of which has been determined by sedimentary rocks settled on the ocean floor and the volcanoes that fringed its edges Since these sediments were light they crumpled into mountain ranges rather than sinking to the floor The Indo Australian plate continues to be driven horizontally below the Tibetan Plateau which forces the plateau to move upwards the plateau is still rising at a rate of approximately 5 mm 0 2 in per year although erosion reduces the actual increase in height 19 Much of the Tibetan Plateau is of relatively low relief The cause of this is debated among geologists Some argue that the Tibetan Plateau is an uplifted peneplain formed at low altitude while others argue that the low relief stems from erosion and infill of topographic depressions that occurred at already high elevations 20 The current tectonics of the plateau is much debated The two end member models are the block model in which the crust of the plateau is formed of several blocks with little internal deformation separated by major strike slip faults In the alternative continuum model the plateau is affected by distributed deformation resulting from flow within the crust 21 Environment Edit Yangbajain valley to the north of Lhasa The Tibetan Plateau supports a variety of ecosystems most of them classified as montane grasslands While parts of the plateau feature an alpine tundra like environment other areas feature monsoon influenced shrublands and forests Species diversity is generally reduced on the plateau due to the elevation and low precipitation The Tibetan Plateau hosts the Tibetan wolf 22 and species of snow leopard wild yak wild donkey cranes vultures hawks geese snakes and water buffalo One notable animal is the high altitude jumping spider that can live at elevations of over 6 500 metres 21 300 ft 23 Ecoregions found on the Tibetan Plateau as defined by the World Wide Fund for Nature are as follows The Pamir alpine desert and tundra covers the western end of the Tibetan Plateau where it transitions to the Pamir Mountains The North Tibetan Plateau Kunlun Mountains alpine desert covers the northwestern limits of the Tibetan Plateau along the Kunlun Mountains The Karakoram West Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe covers the westernmost parts of the Tibetan Plateau and Ladakh The Northwestern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows on the edges mountains bordering the extreme west of the Tibetan Plateau The Central Tibetan Plateau alpine steppe covers most of the central portions of the Tibetan Plateau and the eastern Changtang The Western Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows covers the southwestern plateau in the Garuda Valley region The Qaidam Basin semi desert located in the Qaidam Basin on the northern Tibetan Plateau The Qilian Mountains subalpine meadows covering the Qilian Mountains in the northernmost portions of the plateau The Qilian Mountains conifer forests covering parts of the mountain ranges in the northeastern Tibetan Plateau The Tibetan Plateau alpine shrub and meadows covering a swath of the central and northeastern Tibetan Plateau The Yarlung Tsangpo arid steppe in the Yarlung Tsangpo River Valley where most of the permanent human population on the Tibetan Plateau lives The Eastern Himalayan alpine shrub and meadows cover the southern Tibetan Plateau on the north side of the Himalayas The Southeast Tibet shrub and meadows cover the southeastern and eastern parts of the plateau and are generally rainier than the other high altitude Tibetan Plateau regions The Northeastern Himalayan subalpine conifer forests reach up mountain valleys in the southern plateau and contain some of the highest altitude forests in the world The Nujiang Langcang Gorge alpine conifer and mixed forests cover the mountain valleys that reach 500 km 310 mi into the southeastern Tibetan Plateau The Hengduan Mountains subalpine conifer forests cover the southeasternmost mountain valleys on the plateau The Qionglai Minshan conifer forests cover the eastern edges of the plateau and are the densest forests to be found anywhere on the Tibetan PlateauHuman history Edit Pastoral nomads camping near Namtso Main article History of Tibet The old town of Gyantse and surrounding fields Nomads on the Tibetan Plateau and in the Himalayas are the remainders of nomadic practices historically once widespread in Asia and Africa 24 Pastoral nomads constitute about 40 of the ethnic Tibetan population 25 The presence of nomadic peoples on the plateau is predicated on their adaptation to survival on the world s grassland by raising livestock rather than crops which are unsuitable to the terrain Archaeological evidence suggests that the earliest human occupation of the plateau occurred between 30 000 and 40 000 years ago 26 Since colonization of the Tibetan Plateau Tibetan culture has adapted and flourished in the western southern and eastern regions of the plateau The northern portion the Changtang is generally too high and cold to support permanent population 27 One of the most notable civilizations to have developed on the Tibetan Plateau is the Tibetan Empire from the 7th century to the 9th century AD Impact on other regions EditRole in monsoons Edit Main article Monsoon Natural colour satellite image of the Tibetan Plateau Monsoons are caused by the different amplitudes of surface temperature seasonal cycles between land and oceans This differential warming occurs because heating rates differ between land and water Ocean heating is distributed vertically through a mixed layer that may be 50 meters deep through the action of wind and buoyancy generated turbulence whereas the land surface conducts heat slowly with the seasonal signal penetrating only a meter or so Additionally the specific heat capacity of liquid water is significantly greater than that of most materials that make up land Together these factors mean that the heat capacity of the layer participating in the seasonal cycle is much larger over the oceans than over land with the consequence that the land warms and cools faster than the ocean In turn air over the land warms faster and reaches a higher temperature than does air over the ocean 28 The warmer air over land tends to rise creating an area of low pressure The pressure anomaly then causes a steady wind to blow toward the land which brings the moist air over the ocean surface with it Rainfall is then increased by the presence of the moist ocean air The rainfall is stimulated by a variety of mechanisms such as low level air being lifted upwards by mountains surface heating convergence at the surface divergence aloft or from storm produced outflows near the surface When such lifting occurs the air cools due to expansion in lower pressure which in turn produces condensation and precipitation In winter the land cools off quickly but the ocean maintains the heat longer The hot air over the ocean rises creating a low pressure area and a breeze from land to ocean while a large area of drying high pressure is formed over the land increased by wintertime cooling 28 Monsoons are similar to sea and land breezes a term usually referring to the localized diurnal cycle of circulation near coastlines everywhere but they are much larger in scale stronger and seasonal 29 The seasonal monsoon wind shift and weather associated with the heating and cooling of the Tibetan plateau is the strongest such monsoon on Earth Glaciology the Ice Age and at present Edit The Himalayas as seen from space looking south from over the Tibetan Plateau Midui Glacier in Nyingchi Today Tibet is an important heating surface of the atmosphere However during the Last Glacial Maximum an approximately 2 400 000 square kilometres 930 000 sq mi ice sheet covered the plateau 30 31 32 Due to its great extent this glaciation in the subtropics was an important element of radiative forcing With a much lower latitude the ice in Tibet reflected at least four times more radiation energy per unit area into space than ice at higher latitudes Thus while the modern plateau heats the overlying atmosphere during the Last Ice Age it helped to cool it 33 This cooling had multiple effects on regional climate Without the thermal low pressure caused by the heating there was no monsoon over the Indian subcontinent This lack of monsoon caused extensive rainfall over the Sahara expansion of the Thar Desert more dust deposited into the Arabian Sea and a lowering of the biotic life zones on the Indian subcontinent Animals responded to this shift in climate with the Javan rusa migrating into India 34 In addition the glaciers in Tibet created meltwater lakes in the Qaidam Basin the Tarim Basin and the Gobi Desert despite the strong evaporation caused by the low latitude Silt and clay from the glaciers accumulated in these lakes when the lakes dried at the end of the ice age the silt and clay were blown by the downslope wind off the Plateau These airborne fine grains produced the enormous amount of loess in the Chinese lowlands 34 Effects of climate change Edit Main article Effects of global warming The Tibetan Plateau contains the world s third largest store of ice Qin Dahe the former head of the China Meteorological Administration issued the following assessment in 2009 though this opinion is now over a decade old Temperatures are rising four times faster than elsewhere in China and the Tibetan glaciers are retreating at a higher speed than in any other part of the world In the short term this will cause lakes to expand and bring floods and mudflows In the long run the glaciers are vital lifelines for Asian rivers including the Indus and the Ganges Once they vanish water supplies in those regions will be in peril 35 See also EditAnnexation of Tibet by the People s Republic of China Bayan Har block Central Tibetan Administration Geography of Tibet Geology of the Himalaya Tibet 1912 1951 Tibetan culture Tibetan sovereignty debate Tibetan diasporaReferences EditCitations Edit Wang Zhaoyin Li Zhiwei Xu Mengzhen Yu Guoan 30 March 2016 River Morphodynamics and Stream Ecology of the Qinghai Tibet Plateau CRC Press Jones J A Liu Changming Woo Ming Ko Kung Hsiang Te 6 December 2012 Regional Hydrological Response to Climate Change Springer Science amp Business Media p 360 ह म लय क ष त र म ज वन य पन पर र सर च कर ग अम र क और भ रत In Little Tibet a story of how displaced people rebuilt life in a distant land 18 February 2020 Illustrated Atlas of the World 1986 Rand McNally amp Company ISBN 0 528 83190 9 pp 164 65 Atlas of World History 1998 HarperCollins ISBN 0 7230 1025 0 p 39 The Tibetan Empire in Central Asia Christopher Beckwith Retrieved 19 February 2009 Hopkirk 1983 p 1 Peregrine Peter Neal amp Melvin Ember etc 2001 Encyclopedia of Prehistory East Asia and Oceania Volume 3 Springer p 32 ISBN 978 0 306 46257 3 Morris Neil 2007 North and East Asia Heinemann Raintree Library p 11 ISBN 978 1 4034 9898 4 Webb Andrew Alexander Gordon 2007 Contractional and Extensional Tectonics During the India Asia Collision ProQuest LLC p 137 ISBN 978 0 549 50627 0 Marston Sallie A and Paul L Knox Diana M Liverman 2002 World regions in global context peoples places and environments Prentice Hall p 430 ISBN 978 0 13 022484 2 a href wiki Template Cite book title Template Cite book cite book a CS1 maint uses authors parameter link Natural World Deserts National Geographic Archived from the original on 12 January 2006 Leslie Hook 30 August 2013 Tibet life on the climate front line Financial Times Retrieved 1 September 2013 Liu Xiaodong Chen 2000 Climatic warming in the Tibetan Plateau during recent decades International Journal of Climatology 20 14 1729 1742 Bibcode 2000IJCli 20 1729L CiteSeerX 10 1 1 669 5900 doi 10 1002 1097 0088 20001130 20 14 lt 1729 aid joc556 gt 3 0 co 2 y via Academia edu Ni Jian 2000 A Simulation of Biomes on the Tibetan Plateau and Their Responses to Global Climate Change Mountain Research and Development 20 1 80 89 doi 10 1659 0276 4741 2000 020 0080 ASOBOT 2 0 CO 2 S2CID 128916992 Cheng Guodong Wu 8 June 2007 Responses of permafrost to climate change and their environmental significance Qinghai Tibet Plateau Journal of Geophysical Research 112 F2 F02S03 Bibcode 2007JGRF 112 2S03C doi 10 1029 2006JF000631 S2CID 14450823 Yang Qinye Zheng Du 2004 A Unique Geographical Unit p 6 ISBN 978 7 5085 0665 4 Sanyal Sanjeev 10 July 2013 Land of the seven rivers a brief history of India s geography ISBN 978 0 14 342093 4 OCLC 855957425 Lia Jijun Ma Zhenhua Li Xiaomiao Peng Tingjiang Guo Benhong Zhang Jun Song Chunhui Liu Jia Hui Zhengchuang Yu Hao Ye Xiyan Liu Shanpin Wang Xiuxi 2017 Late Miocene Pliocene geomorphological evolution of the Xiaoshuizi peneplain in the Maxian Mountains and its tectonic significance for the northeastern Tibetan Plateau Geomorphology 295 393 405 Bibcode 2017Geomo 295 393L doi 10 1016 j geomorph 2017 07 024 a href wiki Template Cite journal title Template Cite journal cite journal a CS1 maint uses authors parameter link Shi F He H Densmore A L Li A Yang X Xu X 2016 Active tectonics of the Ganzi Yushu fault in the southeastern Tibetan Plateau PDF Tectonophysics 676 112 124 Bibcode 2016Tectp 676 112S doi 10 1016 j tecto 2016 03 036 Werhahn Geraldine Senn Helen Ghazali Muhammad Karmacharya Dibesh Sherchan Adarsh Man Joshi Jyoti Kusi Naresh Lopez Bao Jose Vincente Rosen Tanya Kachel Shannon Sillero Zubiri Claudio MacDonald David W 2018 The unique genetic adaptation of the Himalayan wolf to high altitudes and consequences for conservation Global Ecology and Conservation 16 e00455 doi 10 1016 j gecco 2018 e00455 Wild China The Tibetan Plateau The Nature of Things Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Retrieved 21 March 2013 David Miller Nomads of Tibet and Bhutan asinart com Retrieved 10 February 2008 In pictures Tibetan nomads BBC News Zhang X L Ha B B Wang S J Chen Z J Ge J Y Long H He W Da W Nian X M Yi M J Zhou X Y 30 November 2018 The earliest human occupation of the high altitude Tibetan Plateau 40 thousand to 30 thousand years ago Science 362 6418 1049 1051 Bibcode 2018Sci 362 1049Z doi 10 1126 science aat8824 ISSN 0036 8075 PMID 30498126 Ryavec Karl 2015 A Historical Atlas of Tibet University of Chicago Press ISBN 9780226732442 a b Oracle Thinkquest Education Foundation monsoons causes of monsoons Archived 16 April 2009 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved on 22 May 2008 The Asian Monsoon BBC Weather Archived from the original on 1 November 2004 Kuhle Matthias 1998 Reconstruction of the 2 4 Million km2 Late Pleistocene Ice Sheet on the Tibetan Plateau and its Impact on the Global Climate Quaternary International 45 46 71 108 Bibcode 1998QuInt 45 71K doi 10 1016 S1040 6182 97 00008 6 Kuhle M 2004 The High Glacial Last Ice Age and LGM ice cover in High and Central Asia In Ehlers J Gibbard P L eds Development in Quaternary Science 2c Quaternary Glaciation Extent and Chronology Part III South America Asia Africa Australia Antarctica pp 175 99 Kuhle M 1999 Tibet and High Asia V Results of Investigations into High Mountain Geomorphology Paleo Glaciology and Climatology of the Pleistocene GeoJournal 47 1 2 3 276 doi 10 1023 A 1007039510460 S2CID 128089823 See chapter entitled Reconstruction of an approximately complete Quaternary Tibetan Inland Glaciation between the Mt Everest and Cho Oyu Massifs and the Aksai Chin A new glaciogeomorphological southeast northwest diagonal profile through Tibet and its consequences for the glacial isostasy and Ice Age cycle Kuhle M 1988 The Pleistocene Glaciation of Tibet and the Onset of Ice Ages An Autocycle Hypothesis GeoJournal 17 4 581 96 doi 10 1007 BF00209444 S2CID 129234912 Tibet and High Asia I Results of the Sino German Joint Expeditions I a b Kuhle Matthias 2001 The Tibetan Ice Sheet its Impact on the Palaeomonsoon and Relation to the Earth s Orbital Variations Polarforschung 71 1 2 1 13 Global warming benefits to Tibet Chinese official Agence France Presse 18 August 2009 Sources Edit Hopkirk Peter 1983 Trespassers on the Roof of the World The Secret Exploration of Tibet J P Tarcher ISBN 978 0 87477 257 9 Brantingham P J amp Xing G 2006 Peopling of the northern Tibetan Plateau World Archaeology 38 3 387 414 doi 10 1080 00438240600813301 S2CID 13534630 External links EditWikimedia Commons has media related to Tibetan Plateau ON THINNER ICE 如履薄冰 by GRIP Asia Society and MediaStorm The Third Pole Understanding Asia s Water Crisis The End of Earth s Summer Long Rivers and Distant Sources Roof of the Earth Offers Clues About How Our Planet Was Shaped Plateau Perspectives international NGO Leaf morphology and the timing of the rise of the Tibetan Plateau Weather in the eastern Chang Tang Archived from the original on 19 March 2006 Retrieved 9 May 2006 a href wiki Template Cite web title Template Cite web cite web a CS1 maint bot original URL status unknown link Protected areas of the Tibetan Plateau region North Tibetan Plateau Kunlun Mountains alpine desert Terrestrial Ecoregions World Wildlife Fund Photos of Tibetan nomads Roof of the Earth Offers Clues About How Our Planet Was Shaped Contemporary lifestyle and language learning center from Tibet lhasa the official language of Tibetan podcast Tibetan History The true history of any region cannot be fully understood without knowing the basic characteristics of a region and of its inhabitants Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Tibetan Plateau amp oldid 1090623358, 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