Climate change: Warming threatens Himalayan glaciers
Climate change poses a growing threat to the glaciers found in the Hindu Kush and Himalayan mountain ranges, according to a new report.
The study found that if CO2 emissions are not cut rapidly, two thirds of these giant ice fields could disappear.
Even if the world limits the temperature rise to 1.5C this century, at least one third of the ice would go.
The glaciers are a critical water source for 250 million people living across eight different countries.
The towering peaks of K2 and Mount Everest are part of the frozen Hindu Kush and Himalayan ranges that contain more ice that anywhere else on Earth, apart from the polar regions.
But these ice fields could turn to bare rocks in less than a century because of rising temperatures, say scientists.
Over the next few decades, the melting could accelerate thanks to warming and increased air pollution from a growing population.
The air pollutants come from the Indo-Gangetic Plain, one of the world’s most polluted regions. The dirty air makes the glacier situation worse by depositing black carbon and dust on the ice, hastening the thaw.