Energy & Environment

Scientists honor Iceland’s first glacier lost to climate change with plaque, eulogy

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Scientists are memorializing Iceland’s first glacier lost to climate change with a plaque and eulogy that will be unveiled in August. 

Rice University recently announced researchers will join the Icelandic Hiking Society to reveal the plaque Aug. 18, honoring the melted Okjökull, “Ok,” glacier 

The plaque contains a somber warning to visitors, titled “A letter to the future.”

“Ok is the first Icelandic glacier to lose its status as a glacier. In the next 200 years all our glaciers are expected to follow the same path. This monument is to acknowledge that we know what is happening and what needs to be done. Only you know if we did it,” it reads. {mosads}

Engraved on the plaque is also “415 ppm,” which references the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere reported in May, Earther reports

In 2014, Ok became the first glacier in Iceland to lose its title due to climate change. The story is told in the 2018 documentary “Not Ok” produced by Rice university anthropologists Cymene Howe and Dominic Boyer.

The Howe and Boyer fear all of Iceland’s more than 400 glaciers will be gone by 2200. 

The documentarians said they hope the monument will raise awareness over the impact climate change is having on glacier loss. 

“In the same spirit as the film, we wanted to create a lasting memorial to Ok, a small glacier that has a big story to tell,” Boyer said in a release. “Ok was the first named Icelandic glacier to melt because of how humans have transformed the planet’s atmosphere. Its fate will be shared by all of Iceland’s glaciers unless we act now to radically curtail greenhouse gas emissions.”

Tags Climate change Glacier Iceland

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