Ecosystems

What is the difference between glacial ablation and accumulation?
Answered by Discovery Channel
  • Discovery Channel

    Discovery Channel

  1. All glaciers consist of accumulation and ablation areas. Accumulation areas are colder; this is where snow collects and adds mass to a glacier. The ablation areas are warmer and the site of glacier meltdown. In the summer, ablation areas are larger and in the winter, the accumulation areas grow larger. Larger accumulation areas mean a glacier is growing and larger ablation areas mean a glacier is shrinking. When the two areas are balanced, the glacier is considered to be stable.

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