Iceland to lay a plaque marking it's first glacier to be lost to climate change
The first of Iceland’s 400 glaciers to be lost to the climate crisis will be remembered with a memorial plaque – and a sombre warning for the future – to be unveiled by scientists and local people next month.
The former Okjökull glacier, which a century ago covered 15 sq km (5.8 sq miles) of mountainside in western Iceland and measured 50 metres thick, has shrunk to barely 1 sq km of ice less than 15 metres deep and lost its status as a glacier.
Researchers from Rice University in Houston, Texas, a leading Icelandic author, Andri Snær Magnason, and the geologist Oddur Sigurðsson will lead the unveiling ceremony at the site in Borgarfjörður on 18 August, local media said.
“In the next 200 years, all our glaciers are expected to follow the same path,” the plaque reads, in Icelandic and English. “This monument is to acknowledge that we know what is happening and what needs to be done. Only you know if we did it.”
The memorial is dated August 2019 and also carries the words “415ppm CO2”, referring to the record-breaking level of 415 parts per million of carbon dioxide recorded in the atmosphere in May this year.
Plaque marking Okjökull, the first glacier lost to climate crisis, to be unveiled in Augustwww.theguardian.com