6-12 December 2013 #684

Working for glaciers

David Breashears

Working for glaciers

DAVID BREASHEARS/GLACIERWORKS
In October 2007, I travelled to the north side of Mt Everest carrying with me a black and white photograph taken in 1921 by the renowned British mountaineer, George L Mallory. It showed the ice-encrusted north face of Everest and the Main Rongbuk Glacier, flowing in a sweeping S-shaped curve down a steep-walled valley.

I placed my camera at the exact spot where Mallory had snapped his iconic picture and was stunned by the changes that had swept over the landscape. Parts of the glacier had melted vertically by almost 100 metres and large lakes covered its lower section. At that moment, I grasped the magnitude of the devastation to Everest’s glaciers and decided to document the effects of climate change on the Himalayan landscape with comparative and high-resolution photography.

When viewing the pairs of past and present images in the Climate+Change exhibit one can easily see the changes to the glaciers and those changes have a story: “What happened What caused it And, most importantly, what will the future look like” This story is explained with science, research, and data.

It is my hope that visitors to the Climate+Change exhibit will leave having learned more about their world and the science behind it. And from this newfound knowledge, a few will seek the education and careers empowering them to develop and influence future policies and solutions to mitigate the consequences of living on a warmer planet.

David Breashears is an American climber and film maker who has been raising awareness on the consequences of climate change in the Himalaya. For interview with Breashears, see Nepali Times #657.
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