Melting Glaciers Part of World-Wide Climate Change Conspiracy

The late American Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan is quoted as saying “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.”  As I surfed the net this morning, I saw several climate change denier sites enthusiastically proclaiming that atmospheric Co2 has been steady for the last 150 years, that the CO2 scare has been debunked, and that global warming is all a scam, etc.

Somebody should make sure they let the glaciers know:

Morteratsch Glacier, Switzerland. 1985. source: WGMS
Morteratsch Glacier, Switzerland. 2007. source: WGMS
According to the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS):
Glacier changes constitute a key element for global climate-related monitoring.
On a century scale, glacier shrinking is global, fast and accelerating, with intermittent regional re-advances on a decadal scale.
Continued glacier melt could lead beyond historical/holocene variability and may lead to the deglaciation of many mountain regions within decades with severe impacts on human activities and welfare.

There is mounting evidence that climate change is triggering a shrinking and thinning of many glaciers world-wide which may eventually put at risk water supplies for hundreds of millions — if not billions — of people. Data gaps exist in some vulnerable parts of the globe undermining the ability to provide precise early warning for countries and populations at risk. If the trend continues and governments fail to agree on deep and decisive emission reductions at the crucial UN climate convention meeting in Copenhagen in 2009, it is possible that glaciers may completely disappear from many mountain ranges in the 21st century.

In a recent article in the October 30 edition of the Proceedings of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, Glacier loss on Kilimanjaro continues unabated” , researchers reported that 85% of the ice cover present in 1912 has disappeared and 26% of that present in 2000 is now gone.  Similar changes  are being reported on Mount Kenya and the Rwenzori Mountains in Africa and at glaciers in South America and the Himalayas.

And apparently no one sent a memo to the mosquitoes in Kenya, either, telling them that the weather isn’t changing.  The Guardian newspaper recently reported that rising temperatures on the slopes of Mount Kenya have put an extra 4 million people at risk of malaria. This is according to research funded by the British government.

Click here to look at more pictures of melting glaciers, and read statistics collected by the World Glacier Monitoring Service.

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