From: University of Alabama, Hunstville, from Science Daily
Published March 6, 2011 07:18 AM

The snows of Mount Kilimanjaro may soon be no more

The first piece of that research, which looked only at the month of July, found that deforestation is changing weather patterns around the mountain but not (at least in July) at the peak, according to Dr. Udaysankar Nair, a research scientist in UAHuntsville's Earth System Science Center.

Early results from this work, which is funded through NASA's Earth Science Directorate, were published Feb. 15 in the Journal of Geophysical Research.

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The current glaciers of Kilimanjaro, made famous by an Ernest Hemingway short story in 1936 and a movie released in 1952, are almost 12,000 years old. At their maximum, the mountain's glaciers and ice cap covered about 400 square kilometers and reached from the summit (19,298 feet above sea level) to the surrounding plain more than 9,000 feet below. About 16,000 years ago, during the most recent ice age, Kilimanjaro's glaciers covered up to 150 square kilometers.

A tiny fraction of that ice cap still exists. Surveys in the 1880s estimated that glaciers covered about 20 square kilometers on the mountain. From 1912 to now, the glacier area on Kilimanjaro has decreased from 12 square kilometers to less than two.

Image shows the current glaciers of Kilimanjaro, made famous by an Ernest Hemingway short story in 1936 and a movie released in 1952, almost 12,000 years old. About 16,000 years ago, during the most recent ice age, Kilimanjaro's glaciers covered up to 150 square kilometers and reached from the summit (19,298 feet above sea level) to the surrounding plain more than 9,000 feet below. Credit: University of Alabama Huntsville.

Article continues: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/03/110305112136.htm

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