Islamabad: The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton, who are currently nearing the end of their 5-day trip to Pakistan, visited a melting glacier site in the Koh-e-Hindu Kush on Wednesday — where they received a briefing by climate change experts on the retreat of the Chiatibo Glacier, according to news sources.
The impact of glacial activities (and other climatic concerns) was the focus of the royal couple’s visit and they witnessed the melting of glacier first hand in Chiral. Out of Pakistan’s 7,200 glaciers, the Chiatibo Glacier is one of the 7,000 glaciers currently showing signs of melting, according to the meteorological data gathered over the past 50 years.
The northern glaciers of the country, throughout the Hindu Kush and Himalaya ranges, are important water sources for 250 million inhabitants of the area. Another 1.6 billion individuals are dependent on the rivers originating from the mountains. All these communities face risk from the global temperature rise.
Ahead of the visit, His Royal Highness (HRH) Prince William – in his speech during a reception hosted by the British ambassador – said that glacial melting could lead to a loss of over one-third of vital glaciers in less than a century; causing considerable damage to the power and agriculture sectors. The British royal couple sincerely expressed their resolve to make efforts for the prevention and mitigation of the global environmental concerns.