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Icy Mountains
Icy Mountains
Icy Mountains

“This is the climate crisis you haven’t heard of”  - Philippus Wester (ICIMOD), 2019

The Tibetan glacier melting rate is concerning. The dramatic changes to the ecosystem could disrupt agriculture, water quality and the livelihood of the huge number of people who rely on the Third Pole. Experts predict that South Asia will be affected by global warming by at least 1°C by the end of the century, whilst other areas could see an increase as high as 3.5-4°C. This rate of warming is significantly higher for the Third Pole region - it could warm by 4.5ºC to 5ºC by the end of the century. 

A report by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), predicts that at least a third of the region will melt due to the climate crisis. If there are no efforts to cut carbon emissions, then this loss could be up to two-thirds. A 15% loss has been recorded already in the Third Pole since the 1970s. 

The global climate crisis means we have seen an alarming rise in temperature levels. Human activity has created this climate crisis, such as mining for fossil fuels and oil, deforestation and emissions from cars and power plants.

According to NASA, carbon dioxide levels have increased by 412 parts per million and the global temperature has risen by 1°C (1.9°F) since 1880. Meanwhile, Arctic ice minimum is going down 12.8% per decade and sea levels have risen by 3.3 millimetres per year. 

Global warming has already had dire consequences, particularly for those in the global south. Wildfires, droughts, heatwaves and floods are just some of the effects. The consequences of the Third Pole melting would include a rise in sea levels and increased river flows, which risks landslides, an unpredictable water supply and unstable weather conditions leaving communities vulnerable.