Engineering geonomic forecast model of glacial-permafrost georisks in mountainous countries on the example of Kyrgyz Tien Shan

Central Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences, Bishkek

Usupaev Sh.E., Usubaliev R.A, Erokhin S.A, Atakanov U., Azisov E.

Researchers of global warming, not fully use data on rhythmic change of glacial to the interglacial periods, and moreover do not consider indicators of the glaciers formation which include inertia-resistant permafrost environment on the Earth [1-4].


With the growth of annual temperature according to the scenarios on the 1,3 - 1,7 °C by 2050 and 2,5 - 3,0 °C by 2100 in Central Asia and Kyrgyzstan, the amount of precipitation will increase by 5 - 7 and 10 - 15% respectively, which will lead to a shift in the thermal zones from 200 to 600 m, up the altitudinal zones.
In Holocene time there are four periods: two cold with minimums in 2900 - 2300 and 330 - 125 years ago and warm with cycle peaks. The latest cold period of paleoclimate lasted for 425 years, and dated 1435 - 1860 C.E., and the latest warm period lasted 200 years (985 - 1185 years C.E.)
Cryolithozine in the territory of mountain countries including Kyrgyz Tien Shan is extremely rich with geohazards induced by frozen water: 1. pulsations of the parts of glacier tongue; 2. ice collapses; 3. firn avalanches; 4. Intraglacial breakthrough closed lacustrine cavities; 5. moraine glacial outburst mountain lakes; 6. Breakdown of the masses of ice and / or avalanche materials creating dam of outburst mountain lakes; 7. glaciological-tectonic faults, resulting in ice sliding and avalanches; 8. loss of sources of fresh clean drinking water; 9. geocryogenic hazardous processes and phenomenas.
In the Kyrgyz Tien Shan the permafrost ground covers more than 34% of the mountainous country. The most developed are the permafrost environments in syrts (local name for high mountain valley) holding (36,400 km2), and stretched on the heights from 2.6 to 7.4 km. Approximately 54% (4350 km2) of area consists from permafrost syrts (local name for high mountain valley) of Kyrgyz Tien Shan.
The temperature of frozen ground with increasing altitude is changed to 5 km (-10, -11 °C.), 7 km (-25, -26 °C). Maximum depth of permafrost soils is more than 1 km. The temperature of frozen soil varies from - 0.7 °C to - 7.9 °C.
The depth of continuous distribution of permafrost soil excess 100 m and has an average temperature of - 3 °C. Zones of interrupted development of permafrost have depth from 30 to 100 m, and the soil temperature from -1 to -3 °C. The areas occupied by the insular permafrost have depth less than 30 m and temperature from 0 to -1 °C. [1]
Ice content of frozen soil varies from 0 (frost thickness single storey formations and massive structure without visible ice discharge), up to 40 or more in coditions of schliere cryogenic textures of segregation type with development of rock-forming injection ice and massive cryogenic textures with widespread development of buried ice.
In case of violation of the surface conditions and melting, the following dangerous cryogenic processes and phenomena occur: differential settlement with the development of thermokarst, thermal erosion, cryogenic landslides, structural solifluction, slipouts, hydrolaccolith, heaving, thufur, polygons, icefield.
The EGN model by Usupaev Sh.E. (Fig 1.) shows the distribution of the lateral pattern, typification and forcats of geonoms of : a)permafrost spread b) glaciation on the territory of Kyrgyzstan.

Figure 1. EGN model of lateral for latitudinal patterns of geonom distribution areas: red line marked permafrost areas, 1. glaciation; 2. orogeny; 3. valleys for the territory of Kyrgyz Tien Shan.

The engineering geonomic model of lateral patterns of distribution and forecast of glacial permafrost geohazards of Kyrgyzstan shows that the permafrost geonom have three highest peaks of development when integral unification of all glaciers by northern latitude.
The greatest peak of permafrost geonom by the area of development is at a latitude of 42 degrees, then when moving from north to south, is the second largest peak by the area of development from 40 degrees 40 minutes to 40 degrees 50 minutes.
The third peak of permafrost geonom is smaller by the area than listed above and is at a latitude of 39 degrees 45 minutes.
The pattern of integral distribution of permafrost areas indicates that the degradation of glaciation in Kyrgyzstan will take place in three stages, in the direction from south to north.
The first will degrade the permafrost of the smallest peak of permafrost geonom, then two peaks of permafrost located toward north.
Permafrost degradation forms three islands of permafrost geonom.
From EGN models it is known that the glaciation geonom closely correlated with permafrost geonom.
The mechanism of glaciation degradation is similar to the scenario with permafrost geonom.
The figure of EGN model of risk assessment of glaciers degradation shows that the modern integrated areas of glaciers in Kyrgyzstan form by latitude from north to south the three peaks of glaciation geonoms.
Since moving to the south the temperature increase with climate change, and the risk of degradation of glaciers also increases.


1. EGN methodology allows to transform the thematic maps of the distribution of long-term permafrost rocks, glaciation, orogens and valleys in mountainous countries into geonom models of the lateral distribution of permafrost, glaciation, orogenic and plain with a forecast of their variability.
2. Modeling of climate change requires the conducting the applied research with drilling and core sampling of ice massive, of deep bottom sediments of large lakes and as a result construction of EGN models.


1. Atakhanov U. Physiographic conditions and environmental aspects of cryogenesis of Tien Shan syrts. Abstract of PhD Dissertation. Bishkek. 1991 25 p.
2. Petrakov D.A., Shpuntova A.M., Aleinikov A.A., Usubaliev R.A. Changes in glaciation area of Ak-Shyyrak massive (Internal Tien Shan) in 2003-2013. // Proceedings of the International Conference „Remote and terrestrial Earth exploration in Central Asia.“ - Bishkek, 2014. - p. 352-358.
3. Alamanov S.K., Sakiev K.S. et al. Physical Geography of Kyrgyzstan. (Collective monograph: 589 pp.). Turar. Bishkek. 2013. p.140-141.
4. Usupaev Sh.E. Engineering geonomic modeling methodology and evaluation geocryospheric risks of global climate change on the Earth planet and its sub-parts. Proceedings of scientific conference „Prospects for the use of water - energy resources of Tajikistan in conditions of changing climate.“ Dushanbe, 2009. P. 59 - 63.

Report prepared by Ryskul Usubaliev (