Can you imagine what it would be like to climb every major glacier in the world in search of history? Imagine what it must have been like
“[to have] spent four years in “thin air” on oxygen-starved, brutally cold and remorseless mountaintops, more time than any mountain climber has spent on peaks or any astronaut has spent in space.”?
Why would someone expose themselves to such brutal conditions just to steal ice? His research has shown just
“how extraordinary is the warming that man is now forcing on the earth’s fragile cocoon.”
Yes, he would gladly share in the debate about the anthropogenic causes of climate change. It is not something he is happy about validating. For those who are not directly impacted by the rapidly dwindling supplies of glacial ice, he offers this to ponder.
“[He] understands [that his] findings are not just the stuff of academic debate. The world’s great glaciers – atop the Andes, the Himalayas, the Rockies – are fast disappearing. In a frozen tent 17,000 feet high at the edge of the Quelccaya Glacier in Peru, [he] posed…a few simple questions that pierced to the heart of the dangers of climate change.
“What do you think all the farmers who rely on the melt-water from this glacier are going to do when it runs out?” he asked, as we huddled over the steam from our cups of propane-stove coffee. “Do you think they are going to just sit there and starve?”
This is a very interesting profile of a dedicated scientist trying to enable his research to influence our understanding of global warming and climate change.
High-Altitude Ice Reveals a Climate on the Rocks
We may easily forget that as these ancient glaciers begin to disappear, they remain canaries-in-the-mine for our environmental sustainability.