February 7, 2012
Man Arrested For Stealing Bits Of Glacier For Designers Ice Cubes
Chilean authorities arrested a man for stealing ice from the Jorge Montt glacier. The stolen ice was being taken to Santiago, Chile in order to be used as designer ice cubes in upscale restaurants and bars.
The stolen goods were found in the back of a refrigerated truck in Patagonia containing nearly six tons of ice worth an estimated $6,200. The crime is reported as simple theft, but authorities may tack on charges of environmental or national heritage crime.
The Jorge Montt glacier is located on the Southern Patagonia ice field and is one of the fastest shrinking glaciers in the world, retreating at a rate of around one-half mile per year. It is the third largest frozen land mass behind Antarctica and Greenland.
Margareta Wahlstrom, head of UNISDR told UPI, “The authorities in Chile are to be congratulated on clamping down on this illegal activity. The Jorge Montt glacier and other major ice-fields are a precious part of our common world heritage and important yardsticks by which we can measure how man-made global warming is threatening the world´s water supply and damaging the environment.”
According to CBS News, Juan Eduardo Barrientos, regional forestry director, wouldn´t identify any of the suspects, but he said the company was looking to liberate the ice through various public officials. Barrientos said, though, that the ice was put into irrigation tanks to help water farms suffering from drought.