A Scientific Assessment of the Third Pole Environment

The Third Pole covers the area of the Tibetan Plateau and surrounding areas including the Pamir-Hindu Kush mountain ranges in the west, the Hengduan mountains in the east, the Tien Shan and Qilian mountains in the north and the Himalayas in the south. This region has the largest ice mass outside of the poles and is important in regulating the regional climate, protecting biodiversity and most importantly, providing fresh water to over 2 billion people. 

Dr. Lonnie Thompson, Byrd Center Senior Scientist, Ohio State University Distinguished Professor, and honorary member at the Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research (ITP) and a foreign member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), is one of the lead authors of the United Nations Environment Program's (UNEP) recent publication titled A Scientific Assessment of the Third Pole Environment. Headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, UNEP is the global authority on the environment within the UN, advocating for environmental education, awareness and protection.

This report highlights environmental changes in the Third Pole and looks at threats affecting its future.

Review the report here.