Global Warming Hazards in the High Andes

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Hiked to 4850 meters elevation to evaluate this glacial lake and its flood disaster potential. A few years ago one like this on the other side of the canyon flooded when a large chunk of the rapidly retreating ice broke off and created a wave that obliterated the natural dam. The wave, in a torrent strong enough to carry house-sized boulders, gouged a new valley down the mountain side and crashed into a lower lake causing it to flood as well. The flood eventually reached the towns below catching everyone by surprise.

Tomorrow I will be investigating a site where 15,000 people were buried by a similar event that happened in 1970. When we drove past the site last week I noticed new construction, and what looked like a school, built on top of mass grave.

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Ronald Harris, the founder of In Harm's Way is passionate about helping to saves lives through disaster mitigation.

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