Two thirds of ice in the Alps will melt by 2100 due to climate change, scientists warn

File photo: Water from the melting glacier runs down through a hole in the Aletsch Glacier on the Jungfraufirn Glacier, Switzerland, August 28, 2015. One of Europe’s biggest glaciers, the Great Aletsch coils 23 km (14 miles) through the Swiss Alps – and yet this mighty river of ice could almost vanish in the lifetimes of people born today because of climate change. The glacier, 900 metres (2,950 feet) thick at one point, has retreated about 3 km (1.9 miles) since 1870 and that pace is quickening. (REUTERS/Denis Balibouse)

Emissions rising at their current rates will result in almost all of the glaciers in the Alps melting by the end of the century.

A recent study has found that half of the ice in the 4,000 Alpine mountain glaciers will have disappeared by 2050 due to a combination of rising temperatures and past pollution.

Even if carbon emissions dropped all the way to zero by 2050, researchers still think it would be too late to save the glaciers and estimate that two-thirds of the ice will still have melted by 2100.

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Losing the glaciers would negatively impact nature, farming, hydroelectricity and tourism in the area.

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Glaciologist Daniel Farinotti was part of the team who conducted the research.

He said: “Glaciers in the European Alps and their recent evolution are some of the clearest indicators of the ongoing changes in climate.

ETH Zurich in Switzerland senior researcher Matthias Huss said: “In the pessimistic case, the Alps will be mostly ice-free by 2100, with only isolated ice patches remaining at high elevation, representing 5% or less of the present-day ice volume.”

The glacier research was published in the journal The Cryospher and details how computer models were combined with real-world data to predict the fate of the glaciers.

Glaciers across the World are thought to be losing 369 billion tons of snow and ice each year.

All this melting ice is contributing to rising sea levels.

Cutting back on fossil-fuel burning, deforestation and other polluting activities could help to minimize the melting and its subsequent devastating impact.

This story originally appeared in The Sun.

Original Article : HERE ; This post was curated & posted using : RealSpecific

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