Thursday, May 20, 2010

Research Behind the News: Message from the Glaciers

The News: Scientists are now warning that there could be a 43 percent decrease in land mass covered with ice in these mountains by 2070 and that in numerous and complex ways this loss will affect Asia’s ten major rivers—the Yellow, Yangtze, Mekong, Salween, Irrawaddy, Brahmaputra, Ganges, Indus, Amu Darya, and Tarim—around which many of the ancient civilizations of the world arose. It is here, among huge modern-day populations of Asia, that the melting of the Greater Himalayas’ glaciers will have the most significant impact during the coming decades and centuries. (Read the entire story in the May 27th, 2010 issue of The New York Review of Books.)

The Research: Read some of the research behind this story in "The Great Melt" in World Policy Journal, Volume 26, Issue 4 - Winter 2009/10. Also, see these books, available at finer libraries everywhere: The long thaw : how humans are changing the next 100,000 years of Earth's climate, or Too Smart for Our Own Good: The Ecological Predicament of Humankind.

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