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Video: Tackling Climate Change

ALBANY, N.Y. ( March 18, 2013) -- Due to climate change, the ancient glaciers of the Andes Mountains of South America are melting faster than ever.

This is a human, ecological, and economic disaster of enormous proportions, changing -- even eliminating -- ways of life in the hill towns and villages of Peru, Ecuador, Chile, and Colombia. Many of these towns count glaciers as their sole source of fresh water.

Mathias Vuille, associate professor of Atmospheric and Environmental Sciences at the University at Albany, has been studying the retreat of these glaciers. Under the auspices of the Andean Climate Change Interamerican Observatory Network (ACCION), Vuille and other local scientists are working on ways to mitigate the catastrophe.

Students recruited from the Andes region have arrived at the University at Albany to work with Vuille and earn doctoral degrees, specifically to bring that knowledge back home. (Two students are from Ecuador, one from Peru.) The U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs recognizes that critical and timely action is required and provided a $990,000 grant to support Vuille’s efforts.

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