Processes of Glacial Erosion
1. Plucking: This is a process of glacial erosion where the glacier freezes in the joints and beds of the underlying rocks, tears out individual blocks and drags them away. Glacial landforms include; landforms of Highland glaciation Landforms of Glaciated Lowlands.
2. Abrasion: In this process of glacial erosion, the glacier scratches, scrapes, polishes and scours the floor and sides of the valley with the debris embedded in it.
The Importance of Glaciation to Man
- The old glacial lake beds with their alluvium support agricultural activities
- Large lakes formed by former glaciation, e.g. the Great Lakes of North America, are used for navigation
- Large lakes formed by glaciation also cut deep overflow channels while draining off, making natural route ways across a mountainous terrain, e.g the Hudson-Mohawk Gap that links the interior with the Atlantic Seaboard of U.S.A.
- In the out-wash plains, eskers and kames have been excavated by man to provide sand and gravel for highway and building construction.
- The lake basins of glaciated mountains provide natural reservoirs for the use of man.
- Streams and waterfalls that plunge down from hanging valleys or other glaciated uplands are harnessed by man to provide hydro-electric power, particularly in Scandinavian countries, Switzerland and Canada.
- The magnificent scenery provided by the glaciated mountains, e.g. the French, Italian and Swiss Alps attracts a lot of tourists for skiing, mountain climbing and sight seeing.
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