Watch the Glaciers Disappear

July 13, 2010 at 10:19 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
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If you’re like me, you’re feeling the need for a little respite from the mess in the Gulf and the human mess underpinning it. Why don’t we look in another direction, toward the Himalayas, that astonishing mountain range between India and Tibet, the highest one on earth. The Himalayas are, after all, stunningly beautiful, at least in the pictures I’ve seen (I’ve never been there, myself). They are also the source of the most important rivers in Asia, rivers that provide water for 3 billion people, nearly half the population of the earth.

But our respite is, I’m afraid, going to be short-lived, because the Himalayan glaciers that provide the water for those rivers and their three billion people are rapidly disappearing. Get a look at them while you can.

The Asia Society, up at Park Avenue and 70th Street in Manhattan, is making it possible for you to do just that, with their new exhibit of archival photos of the Himalayan glaciers past and present. A video on their webpage gives a sense of the exhibit. Also, tomorrow night, Wednesday July 14, from 6:30-8:00 PM, a panel at the Asia Society will discuss the implications of the melting of these glaciers. One of the panelists is the great climate change activist and writer, Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org.  Readers who live in New York may want to attend. I’m certainly going to.

But for those of you farther afield, the Asia Society is also broadcasting the panel on-line from 6:30 to 8:00. Perhaps the melting of the glaciers is not a whole lot more cheerful a topic than the destruction of the Gulf Coast, but there’s something about the Himalayas themselves that lifts up the heart. Maybe the pictures, or the panel, will inspire us to take action.

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  1. […] of the problem is that I’ve been studying climate change. First I went to see those photographs at the Asia Society that show the Himalayan glaciers three hundred vertical feet shorter than they were in the early […]

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