Swedish moun­tain loses high­est peak ti­tle due to global warm­ing

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Trends -

In the far north of Swe­den, about 150km in­side the Arc­tic cir­cle, be­tween two vast crags vy­ing for the ti­tle of Swe­den’s high­est peak has been set­tled by global warm­ing. Keb­nekaise has two peaks: a south­ern, glacier-cov­ered sum­mit ac­ces­si­ble to suit­ably equipped hik­ers, and a north­ern neigh­bour that is free of ice. Since they were first mea­sured in 1880, the south­ern peak has been the higher. But this year’s mea­sure­ments, taken on Septem­ber 3, the north­ern peak was 1.2 me­tres higher.

“This is the low­est height ever mea­sured,” said Gun­hild Rosqvist, a ge­og­ra­phy pro­fes­sor at Stock­holm Uni­ver­sity. “Over the past 50 years, the height of Keb­nekaise’s south­ern peak has de­creased by 24 me­tres.” The an­nual sur­vey re­vealed the north­ern peak now stands at 2,096.8 me­tres — mak­ing it 1.2 me­tres taller than the south­ern peak, which has melted away to 2,095.6 me­tres.

Swe­den recorded its hottest ever months of May and July in 2018, with tem­per­a­tures soar­ing to over 10°C above nor­mal. With wild­fires burn­ing across the Arc­tic, the Keb­nekaise glacier shrank by al­most four me­tres.

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