Obama: Shrinking Exit Glacier a powerful sign of warming climate

02-Sep-2015

SEWARD, Alaska (Reuters) - President Barack Obama walked down a winding wooded path, past a small brown post marked "1926" and a glacial stream trickling over gravel that eons of ice have scraped off mountain peaks.


He reached another post reading "1951", a marker for the edge of Alaska's Exit Glacier that year, and gazed up toward where the rock-rutted ice mass has since receded, a quarter mile away.

"This is as good a signpost of what we're dealing with on climate change as just about anything," Obama told reporters near the base of the glacier.

It was the signature moment of Obama's trek to Alaska, aimed at making the world pay heed to the damage already caused by rising seas, and demand global leaders reach a deal in Paris in December to curb climate-changing carbon emissions.
Last year alone, the Exit Glacier melted and retreated 187 ft (57 m) toward the Harding ice field, which itself has lost 10 percent of its mass since 1950, mainly due to climate change. (by Roberta Rampton, Reuters)