The third pole of this planet called the Tibetan Plateau has long been claimed to be important for water availability in Asia.
Ten major rivers, including the tumultuous Brahmaputra and many others, derive their energy and existence from the Tibetan Plateau and act as a lifeline insurer for a third of the world’s population residing in East and South Asia.
It remains a mystery how the powerful dynamic and thermal effects of the region and its magic with atmospheric circulations significantly influence the climate pattern of East Asia, including the Indian monsoon and even certain processes in the hemisphere. North.
Crucial for water security and protection against natural disasters in Asia, its hydrosphere and cryosphere are now facing irreparable damage with ecosystem and environmental changes within the plateau, leaving many side the socio-economic aspect and the means of subsistence of the populations.
The world begins to crumble with its own footprint and a bigger sign is right next to it.
The highest peak of the Himalayas that we boast about, that is, Mount Everest, has begun to show its deep existential crisis. Its tallest glacier is rapidly retreating after losing its 2,000 years of ice in just 30 years.
This is presented by a study undertaken through extensive extraction of an ice core from the glacier at a record altitude of over 1,000 meters (3,200 ft).
This involved collecting biological samples, gathering and drawing a high-resolution map, analyzing water quality while digging into the pages of Everest’s glacier history.
The lead scientist explains: “It was the most comprehensive scientific experiment ever conducted on the southern slope of Everest.”
The South Col Glacier, having been trampled on by ambitious climbers, has apparently lost half its mass due to warming temperatures since the 1990s and could likely disappear by the middle of the current century.
“And one of the questions was, when you go that high, obviously it’s a lot colder. So the Everest glaciers, even as high as 8,000 meters (26,250 feet), where the Col Sud, are they retreating?
The logic behind such a calculation:
Along with the extracted piece of ice core 10 meters (33 feet) long, it was subjected to radiocarbon dating, similar to those undertaken on tree rings.
The core had layers of annual ice growth which were measured according to their respective thicknesses, resulting in a decent calculation of ice cover loss of around 55 meters (180 ft).
He revealed that the age of the ice on the surface was around 2,000 years old, indicating that any ice that may have adorned the glacier over the past two millennia could not be traced and had disappeared.
Inference led this change to date back to the 1990s, meaning the ice thinned nearly 80 times faster than it formed.
“I have noticed since I first went to the Himalayas 20 years ago that many glaciers in and around the Everest region have changed a lot. Khumbu Icefall has also changed a lot. changed over these years, so it is not only the highest of the glaciers, but apparently all of them”according to National Geographic.
Threats of melting ice coupled with global warming:
A process called sublimation did a great deal to accelerate the loss of ice. This causes snow and ice to evaporate without converting it to a liquid (water) phase.
Sublimation requires cold and dry climatic conditions as well as a beam of sunshine and strong winds, which are particularly prevalent at high altitudes.
Snow possessing a high albedo or reflectivity continues to maintain itself because it deflects and does not absorb, most of the solar radiation returns to the atmosphere, but when melting, a reduced albedo triggers a cycle of change.
“If you lose fresh snow, the ice itself is darker and just absorbs more solar radiation, so the melting and sublimation seem more intense and the ice loss increases.”
“And now we have proof that even the tallest glacier on the highest mountain in the world is rapidly losing its ice. So yes, this is a real wake-up call.