Opinion

A world wonder in crisis

If ever asked to name my “bucket list,” I, like most, would name the well-known wonders of the world such as the Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal (obviously the mausoleum not the hotel in “The Hangover”) and the Roman Coliseum.

After learning about one of most picturesque places in the world, however, the original must-sees now seem so passé.

Ironically, the hidden wonder I refer to, the Meili Snow Mountain Range, is not so hidden since its highest peak soars at 22,000 feet.

Most commonly known for the Jade Dragon Snow Mountain, the range’s majestic glacial peaks are located on the Tibetan Plateau located in the Yunnan province of China, an area so untouched that until recently, only Buddhist monks visited the sacred mountain range.

In addition to harmonizing peace and prayer, the mountain range is one of the most biologically diverse places on earth and home to half of all the plants and animals found in the country; thus, it is becoming a popular eastern tourist destination.

By this time, perhaps you are questioning why this natural beauty takes precedence over other natural masterpieces.

The necessity to visit the peak is urgent because as days pass the glacial range disappears drop by drop, literally. The mountain range is melting at alarming rates, as the temperatures at these high altitudes climb quicker than at sea level.

According to Barry Baker, a nature conservancy climate modeler who has been studying the Yunnan region for more than five years, the Mingyong, part of the range that runs into the Mekong River, is one of the fastest receding glaciers in the world, retreating at a rate of 160 feet per year.

As an active citizen of a global society, you may be wondering what can be done. Unfortunately, other than altering greenhouse gas consumption, not much is possible. Because the range is deemed holy by Buddhists, paleontologists are not permitted to set foot onto the mountain’s icy surface.

Thus, this global dilemma is not getting the attention it deserves by either scientific nor political communities, though the consequences of the melting may be detrimental in the future.

As a result of the pressures of global warming, I urge you to reconsider your dream vacation plans to Beijing, Agra or Rome in order to experience the serenity of the most sacred natural wonders before time glides by.

Margaux Traina is a junior majoring in international studies. She may be contacted at mtraina@themiamihurricane.com.


March 7, 2010

Reporters

Margaux Traina


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

It’s the play Miami Hurricanes fans will never forget — and Florida State fans are trying to forget. ...

Miami Hurricanes fans might recall their favorite college football players in past years dreaming of ...

The new quarterback is usually the ones fans gush over. For the University of Miami, last season it ...

Debate all you want, but University of Miami football coach Mark Richt made it clearer than ever Wed ...

Last year, when University of Miami tailback Mark Walton attended the Atlantic Coast Conference Foot ...

UM dining services team earns national recognition for special event catering. ...

From hammerheads to great whites, University of Miami researcher Neil Hammerschlag is a dedicated sp ...

An ACLU report authored by UM sociologists documents racial and ethnic disparities in Miami-Dade Cou ...

Following the summit between Trump and Putin, reaction from politicians, pundits and former intellig ...

A School of Communication associate professor played an important hand—an artistic one!—in World Cup ...

Miami senior Tyler Gauthier was named to the 2018 Fall Watch List for the Rimington Trophy presented ...

Miami junior wide receiver Ahmmon Richards was among those named to the watch list for the 2018 Bile ...

University of Miami junior running back Travis Homer was named a preseason candidate for the Doak Wa ...

Six former Canes competed on NBA Summer League teams, with three averaging at least 10 points per ga ...

Quick Hits gives University of Miami volleyball fans an opportunity to get to know the new student-a ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.