Zuc'min Guiding is profoundly honoured to be part of Canada's UN International Year of Glaciers Preservation.
The United Nations has declared 2025 as the International Year of Glaciers’ Preservation to raise awareness of the critical role of glaciers, snow and ice play in local and global climate systems, and to recognize the social and economic impacts their changes will bring. The core objectives of the Year are to better equip decision-makers globally with the tools and information needed to address the consequences of deglaciation, and to ensure scientists and researchers have the capacity to provide that information. Achieving these goals requires global cooperation especially at the research level, something Canada is proud to contribute to.
The Year is about much more than just ice itself. The cryosphere (referring to water in all its frozen forms) is changing as the climate warms. Changing snowpacks, permafrost degradation, reduced lake ice, less snowfall and more rainfall – all of these have profound implications on our way of life not just in mountain regions, but also far downstream as several major Canadian rivers begin in the mountains. The Canadian Rockies are North America’s only triple point continental divide, meaning water from these mountains flows towards three different oceans. Water from snow and glaciers in the Canadian Rockies feed the Mackenzie, Columbia, Fraser and Saskatchewan-Nelson rivers to reach the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic Oceans, flowing across borders, supporting agriculture, ecosystems and hydropower on their way. Snow and glacial melt feeds irrigation for agriculture, drinking water supplies, hydroelectric power stations and precious aquatic habitats, it supports tourism and recreational activities, and can provide especially valuable water resources during times of drought.
Not only are snow and glaciers implicated in Canada’s water security but even more profoundly, losing our mountain cryosphere will mean losing part of our Canadian identity. This is what the Year is trying to do: recognize mountain snow and glaciers for more than just the frozen water that they hold; recognize them for their significance to our way of life.
Zuc'min Guiding endeavours to support the goals of the International Year by building awareness among our guides, partners and clients of the importance of the cryosphere. Further we aspire to develop and provide meaningful guiding and cultural initiatives that illustrate changes in the cryosphere. Please stay tuned to this page for upcoming events and please click on "Discover More" that will direct you to Canada's UN International Year of Glacier Preservation website to learn more.
Nordic Glacier, Northern Selkirks.
Photo credit, 2023 Patterson.
University of Calgary, One Health Summer Institute