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Too Much-Too Little Water: Adaptation to Climate Change in the Hindu Kush Himalayas and Central Asia

25 Aug 2010

The feasibility study concludes that time is limited in terms of coping with dramatic challenges to livelihoods in the region. A cross-boundary collaborative programme needs to prioritize and focus on adaptation already by 2011–2015. Strengthening and developing national and cross-boundary adaptation strategies to too much and too little water is urgent, particularly with regard to foods, drought and subsequent food security.

The Norwegian MFA have funded a feasibility study 2007 - 2009 entitled Hindu Kush-Himalayas climate impact assessment (HICIA). The pilot study investigated the feasibility and need for establishing a programme on adaptation and assessment of climate change in the Hindu Kush-Himalayas given scientific, institutional and political challenges in the region. The study was led by CICERO (Center for international climate and environmental research), UNEP GA (United Nations Environment Programme GRID-Arendal) and ICIMOD (International Center for Integrated Mountain Development).

The project has revealed great need for improved coordination and involvement of adaptation strategies to too much and too little water in the region. The pilot study has successfully relied on the approach of building and strengthening existing approved channels of collaboration between Nepal, India, People’s Republic of China and Pakistan through ICIMOD and fieldwork was conducted in all countries involving 12 key institutions.

The study furthermore concludes that the institutional, scientific and technical capacity in the region is diverse, but deemed as sufficient for undertaking a large scale assessment, pending support and cooperation with a community of international scientific experts and institutions. The study has also ascertained that it is politically feasible to conduct a large scale study in the Greater Himalayan Region with ICIMOD as a legitimate and well recognized hub and coordinator of activities in the region in collaboration with relevant international expertise and the UN.

Status: Completed

Type: Monograph

Author: Björn Alfthan, Tina Schoolmeester

Year of publication: 2010

Publisher: GRID-Arendal

Tags: climate change mountains Central Asia Himalaya polar water

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