Photo courtesy of Harish Bisht
“I love glaciated environments,” says David Porinchu (center), associate professor of geography. “I’ve always wanted to work in the Himalayas, and it doesn’t get more glaciated than that.” Porinchu spent six months in India last year as a Fulbright Scholar, collecting lake sediment cores from 15 lakes across an 11,000-foot range of elevation. In May, he and his team—including students and staff from Kumaun University—hiked to Deoria Tal (“tal” means “lake”) in the Garhwal Himalayas in the state of Uttarakhand. (Left to right) Harish Bisht, Ph.D. student; Prem Bisht, department staff; Porinchu; Bittu Singh, department staff; and Kishan Kotliya, a local driver, carried tubes used to protect lake sediment cores. Master’s student Emily Niederman is analyzing the cores—which represent from 100 to 5,000-plus years, depending on length—to reconstruct the long-term evolution of climate in this region.