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Venezuela loses its last glacier as it shrinks down to an ice field

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Venezuela has officially lost its last glacier, the Humboldt Glacier, which has now been reclassified as an ice field due to significant shrinkage
• This marks Venezuela as the first country in modern times to lose all its glaciers, a concerning environmental milestone

🔭 The context: Previously, Venezuela hosted six glaciers in the Sierra Nevada de Mérida
•  By 2011, five had disappeared, leaving only the Humboldt Glacier. Recent assessments reveal that it has diminished to less than 2 hectares, accelerating its demise unexpectedly

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: The complete loss of glaciers in Venezuela highlights the drastic impacts of climate change at tropical latitudes
• This phenomenon serves as a precursor to similar expected outcomes in other countries with tropical glaciers, underscoring the urgent need for climate adaptation and mitigation strategies

⏭️ What's next: Experts predict that other countries like Indonesia, Mexico, and Slovenia may soon face similar fates
• The situation calls for increased focus on studying and mitigating the broader impacts of glacier retreat on ecosystems and human communities

💬 One quote: “This is an extremely sad record for our country, but also a unique moment in our history,” said Luis Daniel Llambi, an ecologist.

📈 One stat: The Humboldt Glacier shrank from 4 hectares in 2019 to less than 2 hectares by December 2023.

Click for more news covering the latest on climate change


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