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


ONE COMMENT ON THIS POST To “A world wonder in crisis”

Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • Error

UM chatter: • One lesson learned in recent years, as one UM official put it: Don’t get your hopes up ...

The unopened Christmas gift that University of Miami defensive coordinator Manny Diaz recently spoke ...

Joseph Yearby declared early for the NFL draft. Gus Edwards transferred to Rutgers. Trayone Gray is ...

The University of Miami is in conversations about playing the University of Alabama to kick off the ...

He’s all grown up. Yet University of Miami defensive end Scott Patchan is only 20. Two reconstructiv ...

University of Miami students and researchers are blogging during a month-long expedition in the Gulf ...

María de Lourdes Dieck-Assad, a world-renowned economist and former ambassador, fills a new role for ...

Through the U Dreamers Grant, DACA students find essential support as they pursue their college degr ...

UM students talk about their internships up north in a city that never sleeps. ...

Former University of Miami Dean of Students William W. ‘Bill’ Sandler, Jr. passed away on August 6 a ...

RSS Error: A feed could not be found at http://www.hurricanesports.com/. A feed with an invalid mime type may fall victim to this error, or SimplePie was unable to auto-discover it.. Use force_feed() if you are certain this URL is a real feed.

TMH Twitter Feed
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 on Thursdays during the regular academic year.