Mountains Uncovered series: Insights into 100 selected global mountain ranges

Jul 25, 2023

Author: Miranda García (AEIDL)

The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) Mountains initiative, in collaboration with the Mountain Research Initiative and Geofolio, has launched the Mountains Uncovered series. This groundbreaking initiative aims to provide a comprehensive and easily understandable overview of the key characteristics of 100 selected mountain ranges from around the globe.

By compiling and visualising various open data products on a global scale, the series provides a consistent and comparative approach to understanding these mountain regions. The Mountains Uncovered Series can be used a valuable resource for researchers, policy-makers, environmental managers, educators, and anyone interested in gaining a deeper understanding of Earth’s major mountain regions. It covers essential aspects of mountain regions, including land cover and land use, topography, climate, hydrology, cryosphere, and the locations of measurement sites.

The initial version of the series focuses on 100 ranges across the world, with particular emphasis on mountain ranges in the focal regions of the Adaptation at Altitude Programme, including the European Alps, the Pyrenees, Caucasus, Balkan Mountains, Carpathian Mountains, Northern Scandes and much more at European and international level. Additional ranges were selected based on their extent and perceived relevance in various aspects, ensuring a diverse representation of mountain regions globally.

While this first version provides a solid foundation, plans for a prospective second version are already in motion. The creators of the Mountains Uncovered series aim to expand the coverage by including more mountain ranges and addressing data limitations in areas such as mountain biodiversity and agriculture. Efforts will be made to identify and develop suitable datasets to enhance the comprehensiveness and usefulness of the series. From GEO Mountains, they encourage the public to provide any relevant datasets through a dedicated form for consideration in future releases.

The Mountains Uncovered series promises to be an indispensable tool to inspire further exploration, analysis, and the generation of additional datasets and products to enhance our knowledge of mountain ecosystems and their significance. By shedding light on of these majestic ecosystems, this initiative contributes to our collective efforts in understanding and protecting the world’s mountains.

GEO Mountains (2023). The Mountains Uncovered Series: Intercomparable Maps and Statistics for 100 Selected Global Mountain Ranges (v1.0). doi: 10.5281/zenodo.8010166