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SOURCE: Panama Today

DATE: February 18, 2019

SNIP: Ecuador could lose two of its seven glaciers over the next few years thanks to global warming, a phenomenon that worries experts because it would alter the paramo ecosystem and its effect on the nation’s water supply and humidity.

The most imminent threat concerns the glaciers of Carihuairazo, in Chimborazo province, and the southern Iliniza, between those of Pichincha and Cotopaxi.

Ecuador has seven glaciers: Antisana, Cotopaxi, Chimborazo, Cayambe, the Ilinizas (north and south), El Altar and Carihuairazo, all located on volcanic craters affected by the greenhouse effect.

In the case of Carihuairazo, 96 percent of the glacier surface has melted, which means it could disappear in just five years, Caceres said, and while no exact forecast has been made for the southern Iliniza, the thaw there has also been noteworthy.

“Up to the end of 2018, an average nationwide loss of 53 percent of glacier coverage was recorded,” said the expert, who warned that it is hard to predict the glaciers’ future because climatic conditions change at random.