NASA launches Himalayan monitoring system in Nepal

Oct 05, 2010
A new system that will allow scientists to monitor the impact of climate change in the Himalayas using images from NASA satellites has been launched in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu.

A new system that will allow scientists to monitor the impact of climate change in the Himalayas using images from NASA satellites was launched in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu on Tuesday.

Around 1.3 billion people depend on the water that flows down from the , which experts say are melting at an alarming rate, threatening to bring floods and later drought to the region.

But relatively little is known about the impact of on the vast region, which environmental campaigners describe as a "third pole" because of its huge water reserves in the form of ice and snow.

The web-based system, called SERVIR, will allow scientists, governments and aid agencies to access of the Himalayas, giving them early warning of floods and other disasters and aiding research on climate change.

A statement said SERVIR, launched in partnership with the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu, could be used to address threats to biodiversity as well as risks from flooding, forest fires and storms.

"The whole of the Himalayan region is something of a black hole for scientists and we hope to use this system to bridge the data gap," said Basanta Shrestha, a senior ICIMOD executive.

"We can use this to monitor the dynamics of the cryosphere (ice systems) in the light of climate change, which is very important in terms of both disaster management and future water availability."

Explore further: Asbestos likely more widespread than previously thought

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Glaciers feeding Ganges may melt down

Jul 01, 2005

Indian scientists say carbon dioxide and other emissions will cause the melt down of glaciers feeding the Ganges River before the century's end.

Study: Climate change alters water supply

Nov 17, 2005

U.S. researchers studying global climate change say hotter temperatures are melting glaciers will have a detrimental effect on the environment and economy.

Study: Shrinking glaciers to spark food shortages

Jun 10, 2010

(AP) -- Nearly 60 million people living around the Himalayas will suffer food shortages in the coming decades as glaciers shrink and the water sources for crops dry up, a study said Thursday.

NASA Develops Central American Monitoring System

Feb 05, 2005

A state-of-the-art environmental monitoring facility in Panama is the first to employ NASA Earth science research and space-based observations to provide Central American decision makers with early warning about a variety ...

Recommended for you

NASA image: Fires in the Egypt River Delta

11 hours ago

This NASA satellite image is of the Egyptian River Delta. Actively burning areas, detected by MODIS's thermal bands, are outlined in red. Each hot spot, which appears as a red mark, is an area where the thermal ...

Terra Satellite sees Tropical Storm Ana over Hawaii

11 hours ago

Tropical Storm Ana made a slow track west of the Hawaiian islands over the last couple of days, and by Oct. 20 was moving westward away from the main Hawaiian islands and heading toward the northwest Hawaiian ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

ChiRaven
not rated yet Oct 05, 2010
Those glaciers are going to be gone by 2035, so why did they bother?