In Peru’s Deserts, Melting Glaciers Are a Godsend (Until They’re Gone)
VIRU, Peru — The desert blooms now. Blueberries grow to the size of Ping-Pong balls in nothing but sand. Asparagus fields cross dunes, disappearing over the horizon.
The desert produce is packed and shipped to places like Denmark and Delaware. Electricity and water have come to villages that long had neither. Farmers have moved here from the mountains, seeking new futures on all the irrigated land.
It might sound like a perfect development plan, except for one catch: The reason so much water flows through this desert is that an icecap high up in the mountains is melting away. [ read more ]