'Melting of ice in Arctic and Himalayas to affect India, China'

HimalayasMelting of the glaciers in Himalayas will lead to rising of sea levels, says Iceland President. (Reuters)

Himalayan nations, including India and China, will be affected in a big way by the melting of the ice in Arctic and the glaciers in Himalayas, Iceland President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson today warned as he asked parties and organisations to hold dialogue to deal with the issue.

Noting that the Arctic, the Himalayas and Antarctica (AHA) are not isolated and separate parts of our global, he said their fate and fate of the people and future are closely connected. Addressing a special session on "The AHA Moment: India and our Ice-Covered World" organized by the Aspen Institute India here, Grímsson said the future of Himalayan nations will depend profoundly on the understanding of the science that ice is melting and also in reaching cooperation among nations to tackle the crisis looming large before them.

He said that the melting of the glaciers in Himalayas and ice in Arctic will lead to rising of sea levels and a large number of most populous coastal cities in India and China other nations then be totally submersed by sea

Glacial melting contributes increased water flow in the tributaries of the rivers flowing from Himalayas and millions of people in Himalayan nations including India, China, Pakistan, Bhutan and Nepal and its neighbouring nations will be affected, he said.

Grímsson cited the incident of the melting of the Arctic sea ice that created severe weather problems in northern China which has experienced extreme winter, causing severe challenges to transport systems, power networks, food production and daily life. Every political party, every functional community and environmental organisations should come together and hold dialogues and discussions on how to tackle the possible emerging scenario, he said.

The Iceland President also called for linking the Arctic, the Himalayas and Antarctic (AHA) and said that all the other ice-covered areas of the Earth together and the international dialogue on climate needed an "AHA" moment.

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