“Melting Glaciers Imperil Kathmandu, Perched High Above Rising Seas”
A month’s walk from the nearest sea, Kathmandu — elevation almost a mile — is as vulnerable to climate change as the world’s coastal megacities.
The capital of the poorest Asian country after Afghanistan already is feeling the effect: Rising temperatures are crimping power and food supplies as rural migrants stream to a city of 1 million that’s among the world’s most crowded.
The mountainous Himalayan nation may have crossed a tipping point of irreversible damage. Its glaciers have lost about a third of their ice reserves since 1977. Just like giant icebergs in the ocean, those glaciers play a critical role in the high-altitude jet streams that can delay monsoons, prolong droughts or spawn storms.
Global warming is a problem at high altitude as well as low altitude coastal regions.