State Centre on Climate Change
under aegis of the State Council for Science Technology & Environment
Himachal Pradesh

   


To understand climate change and its impact on the Himalayan Eco-System by developing and implementing mountain spicific adaptation plans based on vulnerability,risk scenario and by enhancing capacity of all stake holders to combat the threat of climate change.
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NCHG-Abstract Vol.

Snow & Glaciers:

Glaciers in the Himalayas have been reported to be in the retreating phase and in future, this will result in water scarcity for the people living in the mountain region and in downstream area who depend on glaciers and snow as a source of fresh water and water for other requirements such as agriculture, industries, domestic sector even in the months of summer when large tracts of the country go dry. The total amount of water flowing from the Himalayas to the plains, and then on to the Indian subcontinent is estimated to be about 8.6 million cubic meters per year.This water supports approximately more than a billion people. Decreases in snow accumulation and glacial retreat might lead to acute water shortages in the future.Therefore, it is important to monitor and assess the state of snow and glaciers and to know the sustainability of glaciers in view of changing global scenarios of climate and water security of the nation. Any information pertaining to Himalayan glaciers is normally difficult to be obtained by conventional means due to its harsh weather and rugged terrains.

Retreating glaciers, depleting snow cover and Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) are of immediate concern in the mountain environment as GLOFs can have a devastating impacts on people, livestock, forests, farms and infrastructure. The retreating glaciers may affect the discharge sustainability in the Himalayan region affecting hydro power generation in the long run. Climate induced hazards emanating from these frozen masses are another area of concern in the Himalayan region which requires attention of the Government as well as public awareness. Another area of concern in mountain environment is the occurrence of snow avalanche which may increase or decrease in the changing climate scenario.

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A Government of Himachal Pradesh Initiative to combat the effect of Climate Change on Himalayan ecosystem
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