Black Carbon, Sustainable Development and Regional Climate Change in the Himalayas


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Presentation made by Dr. Madhav Karki, Deputy Director General, ICIMOD

Outline of the presentation:
- Impact of climate change
- Key issues and knowledge gaps
- New phenomenon of Black Carbon
- Need for adaptation and mitigation for Sustainable Development
- Conclusion and way forward

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  • Only minor part of Tarim and Amu Darya river basins are within HKH region
  • Black Carbon, Sustainable Development and Regional Climate Change in the Himalayas

    1. Black Carbon, SustainableDevelopment and RegionalClimate Change in theHimalayas:Dr. Madhav Karki, DeputyDirector General, ICIMOD, Nepal International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development Kathmandu, Nepal
    2. Outline of the presentation• Impact of climate change• Key issues and knowledge gaps• New phenomenon of Black Carbon• Need for adaptation and mitigation for Sustainable Development• Conclusion and way forward
    3. Black Carbon – a harmfulaerosol to the atmosphere Accumulation-mode (0.1 - 1.0 µm)
    4. Source and impact of BC inthe Himalaya• Incomplete combustion of fossil fuels, wood and other biomass.• Absorbing sunlight and disturbing radiation balance and heating up lower atmosphere and surface cooling;• Major agent contributing to global warming and acceleration of glacier melting
    5. Findings of the UNEP Scientific Study on BC• Strong regional warming from BC and tropospheric O3• Himalayan regions highly prone to large positive radiative forcing by BC,• Glaciers and seasonal snowpack areas are likely impacted from large BC sources from South and East Asia.
    6. Multiple effects of BC in the Himalayas• Physical: Reduced visibility, deposition on snow reduces albedo, melts glaciers faster• Chemical: formation of methane, sulphur and tropospheric ozone (SLCF)• Physiological: Pulmonary
    7. Himalayas: water towers andecological buffer of south Asia • River basins – Indus – Ganges – Brahmaputra – Irrawaddy – Salween – Mekong – Yangtze – Yellow – Tarim – Amu Darya Sustaining over 600 million people in the Region 1.3 b including downstream populations in 8 countries
    8. Projection of Climate Changeimpacts • All of Asia is likely to warm; • Himalayas likely to warm 3-4 oC above baseline by the end of this century; • Extreme rainfalls as well as drought events are likely to increase; • Increased scenario of disasters, food insecurity; disease pandemics likely
    9. Expected change inhydrological regime• Melt water runoff will Human decrease• Water demand and water rY Ru ra l o ec t stress will increase S• Extreme events Upstream Downstream (floods/droughts) will Ecosyst em U rX increase o rb ct an• Water conflict likely to Se increase at all levels
    10. Retreat of Trakarding Glacier& Growth of Tsho Rolpa Lake
    11. Water related hazards Flood Landslide/Avalanche Famine Water rel. Epidemic Drought  Flash flood has the highest mortality ratesJonkman, 2005
    12. HKH region: hot spots toclimate change• Climate change impacts likely to be severe in the Indus and the Ganges basins• Contribution of melt water in dry season river runoff is high;• High population density makes the region highly vulnerable ( the Ganges Basin, 401; pop, 0.4 bn; the Indus, 165; pop, 0.2 bn)
    13. ICIMOD’s plan to addressBC issue in Himalayas• Black carbon is short-lived in the atmosphere, gradual reduction of the source is a approach• Awareness raising on its multiple livelihood and human health benefits• Use of alternative fuels for cooking, clean burning stoves; reducing emissions from smokestacks, coal and vehicles using, especially diesel fuel; and reducing open burning of waste and agri. biomass
    14. Satellite based Forest FireHotspots Increase in forest fires in 2009 year with additional 1000 new fire hotspots compare to the previous year 2008 MODIS Satellite Image – March 12, 2009
    15. Nepal Operational ForestFire Information System
    16. Detecting Forest Fire Proneareas 3 1 2 MODIS Temporal analysis between 2008 - 2009Fire affected parks 1. Chitwan National Park 2. Parsa Wildlife Reserve 3. Shukla Phant Wildlife Reserve
    17. Key messages• Livelihood diversification is a central adaptation strategy,• Early warning and decentralized disaster preparedness can save lives & livelihoods,• Climate `proofing’ of development projects necessary to achieve sustainable development• Climate change adaptation and mitigation (that has adaptation co-benefits) efforts needed.• Knowledge solutions and livelihoods benefits through collaboration and co-operation needed
    18. Thank you