Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality

Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality
Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality
Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality
Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality

Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality

Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality

Glacier Melting Accelerates in JK; Urgent Need for Carbon Neutrality

The rapidly increasing carbon emissions are contributing to the accelerated melting of glaciers in Jammu & Kashmir, leading to significant concerns. Experts warn that the Union Territory has lost nearly 30 percent of its glaciers over the past six decades, and if the current pace continues, up to 70 percent of these glaciers could vanish by the end of this century.

This trend of glacier melting is occurring throughout the Himalayan region, including Jammu & Kashmir. Recent years have witnessed an escalation in the pace of glacier melting, with last year recording record levels of melting, although this year’s melting is slightly lower. Several factors contribute to this phenomenon, including reduced winter snowfall, particularly during the warm months of February and March, coupled with consistently high temperatures during those months.

While estimating the exact loss of glaciers is challenging, research indicates that the Union Territory has already lost a significant percentage of its glaciers in the last 60 years. Professor Shakil Romshoo, an earth scientist and Vice Chancellor of the Islamic University of Science and Technology, revealed that approximately 18-20 meters of glacier ice is lost annually.

Kashmir’s largest glacier, the Kolahoi glacier, has experienced a 25 percent reduction in size since the 1960s and is currently losing around 35 meters of ice annually, making it not only the largest glacier but also the fastest-melting one in Kashmir.

The prospects for glacier melting are concerning, particularly with predictions of a temperature increase of 4-7 degrees by the end of this century. Experts emphasize that the only effective measure to prevent glacier loss is to achieve carbon neutrality. Carbon emissions must be reduced significantly to halt glacier melting and its severe consequences, including water scarcity.

Addressing carbon emissions and taking steps toward carbon neutrality is not only crucial for preserving glaciers but also for mitigating the broader impacts of climate change in the region and worldwide.

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