Kathmandu to Copenhagen…climate change in South Asia
For anyone who has been to the Himalaya over the years, you can't help but notice that things are, well, warming up. In the nearly 20 years since my first visit to Nepal, I've seen evidence of glacial recession in the high mountain valleys, and it has been the subject of much study in recent years. (See The American Alpine Club's press release about Climbatology, featuring the work of Alton Byers from The Mountain Institute.)
I recently was sent an article about climate change and glacial recession in the Himalaya…and it was pretty frightening, underscoring what I have already seen, heard, and read. As just one example, take a look at the photo below showing the growth of the Imja Lake below the popular Imjatse, or Island Peak, near Mount Everest:
And, check out this YouTube video for some idea of the size and scope of the water crises in South Asia:
But, on a hopeful note, the Nepali government, in cooperation with several INGO's, has initiated the "Kathmandu to Copenhagen" Conference to begin addressing the unique threats of global warming to the populations of South Asia.
I'm keeping my fingers crossed that some good action – not just words – can come from this conference.