Images of satellite released by NASA show that one of the glaciers thickest alpine mountains in the world, Taku, Alaska, is melting. A comparison between photos taken in 2014 and 2019 shows a setback in the ice line, which may be the beginning of an irreversible process.
Located near the city of Juneau, capital of Alaska, Taku is 1,477 meters thick, 58 km long and has a positive mass, meaning that more snow accumulates on it in winter than it melts in summer. So scientists hoped that it could survive climate change
- NASA Earth (@NASAEarth) November 7
"We believed that the mass balance at Taku was so positive that it would continue to advance for the rest of the century," says Mauri Pelto, a glaciologist at Nichols College in Dudley, Massachusetts. "But no more. With that, the score stands at 250 for climate change and 0 for alpine glaciers ”.
Glaciers usually go through cycles of expansion and retraction, but what worries scientists is the speed of current changes. "Such a rapid transition indicates that climate change is overcoming the natural cycle of advance and regression through which the glacier would normally pass."