The Indus Basin: A glacier-fed lifeline for Pakistan : HI-AWARE Working Paper 11 (2017)

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The Indus River is the 8th longest river in the world. It originates in the Tibetan Plateau and flows across the entire length of Pakistan. The Indus river basin is home to a population of nearly 200 million people. It passes through a variety of eco-climatic zones in Pakistan and supports the livelihoods of a large number of communities. The HI-AWARE project in Pakistan is focusing on the unique eco-systems and habitats associated with the Indus River. The project has undertaken research in three sub-basins – Hunza, Soan, and Chaj Doab, representing the upstream, midstream, and downstream – on aspects of hydrology, climate, water, agriculture, health, and urban management to document the existing situation and identify the vulnerability of the people in the basin. The study also documented people’s responses to the changing climate and adaptation potential with regard to the different sectors, and government policies related to climate change adaptation. This document presents and assessment of the current situation of these areas in the face changing climate. It provides an overview of the major characteristics of the basin such as hydrology, key climatic trends and socio-economic status of the resident communities. Climate change bears great significance on the livelihoods of the people which are excessively vulnerable to its impacts. Moreover, as a result of climate change the recent increase in the frequency and incidence of natural calamities such as floods, droughts, landslides and glacial lake outburst floods (GLOFs) have increased the risk of vulnerable communities living in the basin. The document assesses the current situation of these vulnerable communities to depict a clear picture for better mitigation and management of such hydro-meteorological disasters.
Language: English
Imprint: Himalayan Adaptation, Water and Resilience (HI-AWARE) Kathmandu, Nepal 2017
Pages: 42
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