|Kolka Glacier collapse, Russia, September 2002:
This image of Mt. Kazbek was taken from the International Space Station on August 13, 2002 (before the glacier collapsed on September 20). Two months later, after the glacier collapsed, Space Shuttle astronauts provided a comparative image (link to next image, STS112-E-6002). The astronauts took the images at the request of the Russian URAGAN project, which is studying changes in the world’s glaciers in response to global climate change. Although scientists have predicted the possibility of large glacial collapses as the climate warms, no one predicted that tragedy would strike the mountain village of Karmadon, when the first image was taken.
This photograph shows the lower part of the Kolka Glacier terminus, on to which the glacier from Mt Dzhimarai-Khokh collapsed—the mountain itself is further to the west. However, the Maili Glacier and its terminus, as well as the upper part of the Genaldon River valley that was filled by the debris slide is very clear in the photo.
ISS005-E-9691, 13 August 2002, 800 mm
The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth, http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov