CLIMATE CHANGE AND PEOPLE MIGRATION IN THE HIMALAYAS
Climate change is redefining the Himalayan Hindu-Kush region in a significant way with tragic consequences on the fragile mountain ecosystem. In particular, in Nepal, in Upper Mustang and in the Langtang valley, the phenomena of drought and the melting of glaciers are constantly increasing, with strong repercussions on small mountain communities, forced to abandon their villages along the Tibetan border and migrate somewhere else.
Among the places most affected by the climate crisis and rising temperatures are the small villages of Samdzong and Dhye, high altitude situations in the remote areas of Upper Mustang, and almost completely abandoned. The few remaining people struggle every day to save the small streams and divert them to the fields used for cultivation. The land in these villages is in fact in the surrounding area and requires a considerable supply of water, which puts the harvest and consequently the sustenance of the community in a pot.
The exodus to the new settlements began several years ago and within a couple of years, these lands will be completely abandoned. On the other hand, the melting of the glaciers in the Langtang valley alters its ecosystem and biodiversity, exposing the local population to the risk of avalanches, which are more and more frequent due to the new snow that struggles to freeze. Not only that, the melting of the glaciers could cause the return of parasites and bacteria of the past, causing serious for agriculture and new forms of epidemics.