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Mountain glaciers may have less ice than estimated, straining freshwater supply

By Kasha Patel and Ellen Francis

07 Feb 2022 · 4 min read

Glaciers in the Andes shouldn’t be free of snow so early this time of year, but some are now bare.

Warm conditions in January, including a scorching heat wave with temperatures exceeding 100 degrees Fahrenheit in some locations, melted almost all snow cover on some of Chile’s Olivares Glaciers and Volcan Overo in Argentina. With around eight weeks left in the melt season, the exposed glacial ice could disappear faster now without a blanket of snow.

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