The Andes´ influence extends well beyond its own geographical range and contributes significantly to the GDP of the Andean countries. For example, apart from serving the needs of the millions of people in the region itself, water from the Tropical Andes is of crucial importance for at least a further 20 million people living downstream. Almost all of the major cities on the western Pacific slope of the Andes rely heavily on water and the energy produced from hydropower, which the Andes mountains provide (Devenish & Gianella, 2012). The Andes are vital as a source of mineral resources and agricultural land. Agriculture and mining have long traditions in the region, and continue to play a significant role in several of the national economies (Borsdorf & Stadel, 2015). Between 15 and 17 per cent of total cropland within the Andean countries is located within the Andes mountains, with
the larger proportion of mountain cropland being in the north: Peru, Colombia and Ecuador (Devenish & Gianella, 2012).
From collection: The Andean Glacier and Water Atlas