Despite this, China has withdrawn from Climate talks – Who knew that there are glaciers in China as well as at the poles? And just like glaciers everywhere, they are melting! Which is why it’s such a shame that China is not cooperating with UN climate negotiations in Cophenhagen.
In fact, the world’s third largest ice sheet, in the remote plateau of Tibet, is warming up faster than any place else on earth. The researchers found that levels of black carbon in the ice core of the Tibetan plateau have soared since the 1990s due to the burning of coal in homes and industries.
The plateau has 36,000 glaciers, which once extended for 18,000 square miles. But they could vanish in the next 50 years and 80% of them are melting. The area has shrunk almost 5% in the past 20 years.
Recent explorations to the area show that lakes have dried up, grassland has turned into desert and livestock is dead. In the London Times, Michael Sheridan quotes Chinese geologist Xin Hongyuan as saying, “There were 4,077 lakes and now 3,000 of them have disappeared.”
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