Some of the world’s most famous glaciers will disappear by 2050 due to global warming, whatever the warming scenario, according to a UNESCO report. This includes the Dolomites in Italy, Yosemite and Yellowstone in the United States and Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania.
According to the British newspaper “Daily Mail”, UNESCO monitors about 18,600 glaciers across 50 of its World Heritage sites, and said that a third of them are set to disappear by 2050.
While the rest could be salvaged by keeping global temperature rise below 1.5°C (2.7°F) relative to pre-industrial levels, in a business-as-usual emissions scenario, about 50% of World Heritage glaciers could disappear almost entirely by the year 2100.
The 50 World Heritage sites featured in the report are home to about 10% of Earth’s glaciers.
But the report warns that these glaciers have been retreating at an accelerating rate since the year 2000 due to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, which lead to warming.
Together, the glaciers lose 58 billion tons of ice each year, which is equivalent to the combined annual water use of France and Spain.
Moreover, they are responsible for approximately 5% of the observed global sea level rise, and alarmingly, the report concludes that glaciers in a third of the 50 locations will disappear by 2050 regardless of efforts to limit the rise in temperatures. .
In Africa, it includes all the glaciers in World Heritage Sites, including Kilimanjaro National Park and Mount Kenya.
Also, in Asia, the glaciers of three parallel rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas and those in western Tian Shan are at risk, and in Europe, the glaciers of the Pyrenees, Mont-Perdeaux and the Dolomites are very likely to disappear by 2050.
Unesco says the glaciers in the remaining two-thirds of the sites could still be saved if global temperature rise remained below 1.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 degrees Fahrenheit).