Kachin snowfields are characterised by perrenial snow and ice that do not entirely melt over the warmer summer months. They therefore consist of masses of snow and ice that accumulate and compact over many years, but unlike glaciers do not become thick enough to flow with gravity. They are crucial for regulating water availability for ecosystems occuring downstream and at lower altitude.
No data were used to assess trends in snow cover, despite data possibly being available to develop time-series estimates of snow cover change in the region where our remote sensing models suggest perennial snowfields occur (Not Evaluated, A1, A2a, A2b). Our map data suggests this ecosystem is broadly distributed and does not meet category thresholds for Criterion B1 or B2. However, climate warming is expected to impact this ecosystem at its single threat-defined location (see assessment information), and it is therefore listed tentatively as Near Threatened – Vulnerable under B3. We recommend urgent further work to refine this assessment based on analyses of time-series earth observation data.