Kathmandu University News

Prof. Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma,VC and Dr. Andreas Schild, Director (ICIMOD) signed in letter of agreement signed

isms | 03 August, 2011 09:23

Prof. Dr. Suresh Raj Sharma, Vice Chancellor of Kathmandu University (KU) and Dr. Andreas Schild, Director of International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) has signed Letter of Agreement (LoA) for “Monitoring and assessment of changes in Glaciers, Snow and Glacio-hydrology in the Hindu Kush - Himalayas with a special focus on strengthening the capacity of Nepalese organizations (The HKH Cryosphere Monitoring Project)” on 31 July 2011.

 The goal of the project is to contribute significantly to improved knowledge and understanding of the cryosphere by analysing changes in glaciers, snow and glacio-hydrology in relation to impacts of climate change on water resource management in the HKH region.

The Cryosphere Monitoring Project has been planned with the objective of achieving the following outcomes:

1)         Relevant and reliable cryospheric data (glacier and snow) timely produced and used for water resource assessments by operational services and research institutions.

2)         Relevant and reliable glacio-hydrological data and current and future water availability scenarios timely produced and used for water resource assessments by operational services and research institutions.

3)         The multi-level remote sensing system at ICIMOD fully operationalized for sustained mapping and monitoring of snow and glaciers for basins and sub-basins in the HKH region.                               

4)         Strengthened and acknowledged ICIMOD as Regional Cryosphere Knowledge Hub for storage, analysis, sharing and disseminating knowledge for relevant operational services and research in the HKH region and internationally.

5)         Enhanced institutional capacity and competence of national partners in Nepal and the HKH region for sustained glaciological monitoring, glacio-hydrological modelling and scenario development and remote sensing of the cryosphere.

The duration of the project is 5 years. The project is supported by Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The other national partners of the project are Water and Energy Commission Secretariat (WECS), Government of Nepal, Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (DHM), Government of Nepal and Tribhuvan University. As stated in the LoA the main responsibilities of KU in the project are to run M. S. by Research in Glaciology and conduct and monitor glacier mass balance of Yala Glacier, Langtang Valley, Rasuwa district and Rikha Samba Glacier, Hidden Valley, Mustang district. Beside glacier mass balance, hydrological and meteorological studies of the glacier basin will also be carried out. The M. S. by Research in Glaciology and glacier mass balance activities will be carried out by the Himalayan Cryosphere, Climate and Disaster Research Center (HiCCDRC) coordinated by Dr. Rijan Bhakta Kayastha under the Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, School of Science with the help of other national partners of the project.

Dr. Kayastha contributed in Glacial Lake and Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF)s in Nepal

isms | 03 August, 2011 09:21

Dr. Rijan Bhakta Kayastha, Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the Himalayan Cryosphere, Climate and Disaster Research Center (HiCCDRC) has contributed in the field based project report published by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) titled Glacial Lake and Glacial Lake Outburst Flood (GLOF)s in Nepal in March 2011. Dr. Kayastha has involved in the project from Kathmandu University and contributed in the project as thematic team leader of glaciology. The report was a product of the project “Hazard Assessment and Mitigation Study of Potential Glacial Lakes in Nepal” executed by ICIMOD with the financial support from the World Bank. The main aim of the project was to develop recommendations for adaptation to, and mitigation of, GLOF hazards (potentially dangerous glacial lakes) in Nepal, and contributing to developing an overall strategy to address risks from GLOFs in the future.

Dr. Rijan Bhakta Kayastha has also contributed in recently published Encyclopedia of Snow, Ice and Glaciers Edited by Singh, Vijay P.; Singh, Pratap; Haritashya, Umesh K. published by Springer (ISBN 978-90-481-2641-5; 1254 pages with 659 illustrations, 428 in color).

This encyclopedia mainly focuses on the various aspects of snow, ice and glaciers, but also covers other cryospheric branches, and provides an up-to-date information and basic concepts on relevant topics. It includes alphabetically arranged and professionally written, comprehensive and authoritative academic articles by well-known international experts in individual fields. The encyclopedia contains a broad spectrum of topics, ranging from the atmospheric processes responsible for snow formation; transformation of snow to ice and changes in their properties; classification of ice and glaciers and their worldwide distribution; glaciation and ice ages; glacier dynamics; glacier surface and subsurface characteristics; geomorphic processes and landscape formation; hydrology and sedimentary systems; permafrost degradation; hazards caused by cryospheric changes; and trends of glacier retreat on the global scale along with the impact of climate change.

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