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High Mountain Areas

Hock, Regine and Rasul, Golam and Adler, Carolina and Cáceres, Bolívar and Gruber, Stephan and Hirabayashi, Yukiko and Jackson, Miriam and Kääb, Andreas and Kang, Shichang and Kutuzov, Stanislav and Milner, Alexander and Molau, Ulf and Morin, Samuel and Orlove, Ben and Steltzer, Heidi and Allen, Simon and Arenson, Lukas and Baneerjee, Soumyadeep and Barr, Iestyn and Bórquez, Roxana and Brown, Lee and Cao, Bin and Carey, Mark and Cogley, Graham and Fischlin, Andreas and de Sherbinin, Alex and Eckert, Nicolas and Geertsema, Marten and Hagenstad, Marca and Honsberg, Martin and Hood, Eran and Huss, Matthias and Jimenez Zamora, Elizabeth and Kotlarski, Sven and Lefeuvre, Pierre-Marie and Ignacio López Moreno, Juan and Lundquist, Jessica and McDowell, Graham and Mills, Scott and Mou, Cuicui and Nepal, Santosh and Noetzli, Jeannette and Palazzi, Elisa and Pepin, Nick and Rixen, Christian and Shahgedanova, Maria and McKenzie Skiles, S and Vincent, Christian and Viviroli, Daniel and Weyhenmeyer, Gesa and Yangjee Sherpa, Pasang and Weyer, Nora and Wouters, Bert and Yasunari, Teppei and You, Qinglong and Zhang, Yangjiang (2019) High Mountain Areas. In: IPCC Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).


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The cryosphere (including, snow, glaciers, permafrost, lake and river ice) is an integral element of high-mountain regions, which are home to roughly 10% of the global population. Widespread cryosphere changes affect physical, biological and human systems in the mountains and surrounding lowlands, with impacts evident even in the ocean. Building on the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report (AR5), this chapter assesses new evidence on observed recent and projected changes in the mountain cryosphere as well as associated impacts, risks and adaptation measures related to natural and human systems. Impacts in response to climate changes independently of changes in the cryosphere are not assessed in this chapter. Polar mountains are included in Chapter 3, except those in Alaska and adjacent Yukon, Iceland, and Scandinavia, which are included in this chapter.

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