A third of world heritage glaciers will disappear, warns UNESCO
The glaciers of the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park (in Alberta in Canada and Montana in the United States) have lost 26.5% of their volume in 20 years.
< p class="e-p">A third of glaciers listed as World Heritage by UNESCO will disappear by 2050, the UN organization warned on Thursday, calling for “rapidly reducing CO2 emissions” which whatever the climate scenario” to preserve the remaining two-thirds.
The study covers 18,600 glaciers covering a total of 66,000 km2 spread over 50 World Heritage sites, i.e. 10% of the total glacial surface of the earth, representative of the state of the world's glaciers, specifies UNESCO in a press release.
According to the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published in the spring, the melting of ice and snow is one of the ten major threats caused by global warming.< /p>
World Heritage glaciers melt at a rate of 58 billion tonnes of ice each year, the volume of water used annually by France and Spain, contributing to global sea level rise, according to UNESCO.
The two-thirds that may not disappear could be saved if we limit global warming to 1.5 degrees, adds the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.
< p class="e-p">The UN climate conference, which is being held from November 6 to 18 in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, will be crucial in helping to find solutions, stressed the Director of UNESCO, Audrey Azoulay.
All World Heritage-listed glaciers in Africa are very likely to be gone by 2050, including those in Kilimanjaro National Park, Tanzania.
In Europe, glaciers of the Pyrenees-Mont Perdu in France and Spain should disappear, as well as those of the Dolomites in Italy and the national parks of Yellowstone and Yosemite in the United States.
Glaciers three parallel rivers protected areas in Yunnan, China, have more than halved in volume and are currently melting the fastest among designated sites.
Around 50% of glaciers World Heritage sites could almost disappear entirely by 2100 under a scenario where emissions remain at their current level, the organization warns.
Beyond ;a call for a drastic reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, UNESCO calls for the creation of a fund international ds for the monitoring and preservation of glaciers.