Articles | Volume 16, issue 5
The Cryosphere, 16, 1779–1791, 2022
The Cryosphere, 16, 1779–1791, 2022
Brief communication
10 May 2022
Brief communication | 10 May 2022

Brief communication: A framework to classify glaciers for water resource evaluation and management in the Southern Andes

Nicole Schaffer and Shelley MacDonell

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Cited articles

Ayala, A., Pellicciotti, F., MacDonell, S., McPhee, J., Vivero, S., Campos, C., and Egli, P.: Modelling the hydrological response of debris-free and debris-covered glaciers to present climatic conditions in the semiarid Andes of central Chile, Hydrol. Process., 30, 4036–4058,, 2016. 
Azócar, G. F. and Brenning, A.: Hydrological and geomorphological significance of rock glaciers in the Dry Andes, Chile (27–33 S), Permafrost Periglac., 21, 42–53,, 2010. 
Barcaza, G., Nussbaumer, S. U., Tapia, G., Valdés, J., García, J., Videla, Y., Albornoz, A., and Arias, V.: Glacier inventory and recent glacier variations in the Andes of Chile, South America, Ann. Glaciol., 58, 166–180,, 2017. 
Barraza, F., Lambert, F., MacDonell, S., Sinclair, K., Fernandoy, F., and Jorquera, H.: Major atmospheric particulate matter sources for glaciers in Coquimbo Region, Chile, Environ. Sci. Pollut. Res., 28, 36817–36827,, 2021. 
Bonnaventure, P. P. and Lamoureux, S. F.: The active layer: A conceptual review of monitoring, modelling techniques and changes in a warming climate, Prog. Phys. Geogr., 37, 352–376,, 2013. 
Short summary
Over the last 2 decades the importance of Andean glaciers, particularly as water resources, has been recognized in both scientific literature and the public sphere. This has led to the inclusion of glaciers in environmental impact assessment and the development of glacier protection laws. We propose three categories that group glaciers based on their environmental sensitivity to hopefully help facilitate the effective application of these measures and evaluation of water resources in general.