2 years cost the same amount of ice as the 30 years before

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Things are getting worse for the Alpine glaciers. The consequences of climate change have already become noticeable, especially in recent years: in the past two years alone, Switzerland has lost approximately as much glacial ice as in the previous thirty years.

Swiss glaciers will have lost four percent of their volume by 2023. After the record year 2022 with a volume loss of six percent, this is the second largest glacier melt since measurements began.

In just two years, the glaciers have lost ten percent of their volume, the Swiss Commission for Cryosphere Observation (SKK) of the Swiss Academy of Natural Sciences announced on Thursday.

Hot summers worsen the situation
The melted ice corresponds to a volume of about 2.2 cubic kilometers, as the head of the Swiss Glacier Monitoring Network (Glamos), Matthias Huss, specified at the request of the Keystone-SDA news agency. This could fill Lake Biel almost twice. According to the SKK, Swiss glaciers have lost as much volume in the past two years as in the thirty years between 1960 and 1990.

The SKK said the sharp decline was due to a combination of a winter with little snow and a hot summer.

Consequences fatal for people
Glacier extinction is considered a direct impact of climate change. However, this is not just a tourist problem; people’s quality of life is also directly related to it. Glaciers not only provide water for rivers and lakes, which we need for drinking water, agriculture and energy production.

Melting ice also increases the risk of glacier collapses, floods and landslides.

Source: Krone

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