Glacier melting is accelerating around the world

DECRYPTION – Before the publication of the IPCC report, several studies already provide a worrying mapping of the state of the melting of glaciers. But efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions would have a direct effect on rising oceans.

Imagine France covered with a layer of ice 60 cm thick, which liquefies every year. You will get an idea of ​​the mass of glaciers that are melting annually in the world, at an increasingly sustained rate. At the dawn of the publication of the long-awaited IPCC report on the state of our planet, several studies published in the journal Nature already offer a mapping of the state of glaciers and a more precise vision of their vulnerability to global warming.

The first provides an unprecedented inventory of the accelerated melting of glaciers all over the world, from the Himalayas to the Andes via the Alps. “What is new is the exhaustive and very precise nature of our measurements. We are for the first time able to measure the evolution of each of the more than 220,000 glaciers on the planet – excluding the ice caps of Greenland and Antarctica.», Explains Étienne Berthier, glaciologist at the CNRS and co-author of the study involving around ten

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