John Kerry Sees ‘Center of Climate Change’ On Norwegian Glacier Visit

22 June 2016, by

John Kerry, the United States Secretary of State, visited a glacier recently in Svalbard, Norway, as part of his travels to meetings in the Nordic countries. He was accompanied by his counterpart, the Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende. The experience of seeing retreating glaciers and shrinking sea ice impressed him. On his Twitter account, he […]

Transnational Solutions to Preserve Yak Populations in Himalayas

14 June 2016, by

In the extreme altitudes and harsh conditions of the Hindu Kush Himalayan Region, yak herding is more than a way of life–it is a way to survive. Environmental change currently threatens yak populations in the region, and undermines the livelihoods of the communities they support. However, a recent report raises hopes of protecting yaks through […]

Should Alberta Legally Protect Its Glaciers?

12 May 2016, by

A recent article in the journal Appeal by Jennifer Cox of the University of Calgary discusses the possibility of legislation regimes for the roughly 700 glaciers in Alberta, Canada. She reviews existing laws and considers alternative forms which might protect these valuable, rapidly-shrinking ice bodies. Cox argues that existing laws in Canada do not protect […]

Activists Say Chilean Glacier Protection Law Falls Short

5 May 2016, by

A recent incident shows the importance of a social movement in shaping a glacier protection law in Chile. Representatives from indigenous and environmental groups testified in April that the draft law— which designates glaciers as protected areas and limits activities that can damage them— has glaring loopholes that would leave  glaciers and the people who depend […]

‘Foreign Policy’ Salutes the Cryosphere

3 May 2016, by

Last month, a Foreign Policy column focused on security issues turned its attention to the cryosphere. The writer, Sharon Burke, a senior advisor at the New America foundation and former Obama administration official, began by pointing out the “aesthetic pleasure” of the term “cryosphere”: The word sounds like some kind of secret realm, possibly involving dead […]

Why Didn’t These Two Glacier Countries Sign the Paris Accord?

27 April 2016, by

Earth Day, April 22, marked a major step forward in global efforts to address climate change when 175 parties gathered in New York to sign the Paris Agreement, the accord that had been adopted last December. The ceremony at the United Nations Headquarters marked the historical record for first-day signatures on an international agreement.  This […]

Why Didn’t These Two Glacier Countries Sign the Paris Agreement?

27 April 2016, by

Earth Day, April 22, marked a major step forward in global efforts to address climate change when 175 parties gathered in New York to sign the Paris Agreement, the accord that had been adopted last December. The ceremony at the United Nations Headquarters marked the historical record for first-day signatures on an international agreement.  This […]

Mining Company Shirks Blame for Glacier Damage in Kyrgyzstan

20 April 2016, by

The most controversial gold mining project in Central Asia is back in the spotlight again this month. Canadian mining company Centerra Gold has re-launched its public relations campaign in Kyrgyzstan to improve the company’s image over the status of glaciers at the Kumtor gold mine, one of the world’s biggest open-pit gold mines and a […]

Of Sanders and Glaciers, Wyoming Edition

13 April 2016, by

Do glaciers have an influence on voting patterns in America? In this year’s unusual presidential campaign, analysts have examined many factors, such as age, gender, race, education or other demographic characteristics. But looking at the proximity to glaciers also merits consideration. Last weekend’s caucuses in Wyoming suggest an association between glaciers and support for Democratic […]

ICIMOD Conference Focuses on Climate Change in Himalayas

7 April 2016, by

The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) held a conference, “Climate and Environmental Change Impacts in Indus Basin Waters,”in Kathmandu in February. At this conference, scientists shared the common idea that a lack of data on the Himalayas is impeding their knowledge of the region and how climate change might affect it— and how […]

In Argentina, Tensions Remain Between Mining and Glacier Protection

6 April 2016, by

A recent article “Defending Glaciers in Argentina” in the journal Peace Review, written by Asmaa N. Khadim, explores the history of one of the world’s largest mining companies, Barrick Gold Corporation, and its conflict with Argentina’s environmental protectors. Many of its mining projects are in proximity to glaciers, which are a crucial water source for […]

A Glacier Makes a Cameo on ‘Madam Secretary’

5 April 2016, by

Glaciers made an unusual appearance on a primetime American television network last month: the television series Madam Secretary aired an episode whose plot involved a conflict between mining interests and an transnational public over the fate of a glacier in Chile. The show, on CBS, stars a fictional Secretary of State, Elizabeth McCord (played by […]