show the toll of global warming on glaciers, US mountaineer, filmmaker
and photographer David Breashears decided to photograph various
Himalayan glaciers while standing on the same spot as that of older
iconic mountaineering photos.
When viewed side by side, these
comparisons of past and present illustrate a stark contrast in the loss
of ice due to warming temperatures as well as black carbon pollution.
images, part of Mr. Breashears’ Glacier Research Imaging Project
(GRIP), were recently placed on display at the Asia Society and Museum
in New York, USA to raise awareness of this worrying evidence.
with their awe-inspiring appearance, the Himalayan glaciers for
millennia have fed the major water bodies of Asia until now, including
the Ganges, Indus, Mekong, and Yellow Rivers.
Two billion people
depend on these rivers, and thus the glaciers, for drinking water and
agriculture. One photo, for example, was taken at the same location as
the 1921 image made by legendary British mountaineer George Mallory of
Mt. Everest’s front face in the Himalayas.
Whereas the older
photo shows the great Rongbuk glacier as a gigantic river of frozen
ancient ice, Mr. Breashears’ newer pictures show instead a bare-rock
riverbed, a glacier in retreat up the valley, and proof that it had lost
a full 97.5 vertical meters of ice mass between 1921 and 2009.
Breashears also noted that since climbing Mount Everest himself in 1981
and several more times over the decades, the temperature had become
much warmer in the higher regions and the ice visibly thinner.
Orville Schell, Director of US-China Relations at the Asia Society
stated about the exhibit, “The melting of glaciers, which you can see so
graphically in these photographs, is a very concrete visual warning to
us. We can see what’s happening. And if we do not take heed, we will
reap a bitter harvest over the next decades to come.”
Mr. Breashears, Professor Schell and Asia Society for helping to
document climate change in such a compelling and accessible manner. May
your efforts lead to our swift and determined actions to halt the
glaciers’ retreat and preserve our world.
Addressing this dire
situation, Supreme Master Ching Hai has been urging world leaders to
adopt both immediate and effective measures, as in an October 2009
address to government magistrates and judges in Mexico.
Supreme Master Ching Hai:
Once towering glaciers are receding so fast that over 2 billion people
are already short of water and food. Many more suffer shortage as tens
of thousands of rivers and waters are gone or drying. http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/environment/global-warming/Himalayan-ice-shrivels-in-global-warming-Exhibit/articleshow/6175804.cmshttp://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/07/15/then-and-now-the-vanishing-glaciers/?src=mv
most urgent time for the planet, I beseech your honorable graces to
please help your country and our world spare lives from the impending
global warming calamity.
If you don’t, there will be too massive a
catastrophe, too immense a suffering upon people, families, the
children, that our conscience might never be able to bear it.
cannot wait for the sustainable energy and green technology to be
available and used by everyone. It would be too late. We must become
to save our planet.