Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Bad news from the Andes

Unprecedented glacier melting in the Andes blamed on climate change

While judging what's going on with glaciers in the Himalayas seems to be quite tricky, it has always seemed that the fate of South American glaciers has been clearer.  And it does have serious implications for water supply:
The Santa River valley in Peru will be most affected, as its hundreds of thousands of inhabitants heavily rely on glacier water for agriculture, domestic consumption, and hydropower. Large cities, such as La Paz in Bolivia, could also face shortages. "Glaciers provide about 15% of the La Paz water supply throughout the year, increasing to about 27% during the dry season," says Alvaro Soruco, a Bolivian researcher who took part in the study.
I should also mention that this is one reason I liked Quantum of Solace:  the writers seemed to be well aware of climate change causing problems in that part of the world, and hence the evil scheme to store desperately needed water underground kinda made sense.

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