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Climate change and water resources of Himalayan region—review of impacts and implication

  • Mir, Bintul Huda1
  • Kumar, Rohitashw1
  • Lone, Mohd Akbar1
  • Tantray, Fayaz Ahmad1
  • 1 National Institute of Technology, Srinagar, 190006, India , Srinagar (India)
Published Article
Arabian Journal of Geosciences
Publication Date
Jun 04, 2021
DOI: 10.1007/s12517-021-07438-z
Springer Nature


Himalayan region is a fragile zone rich in water resources and biodiversity. The critical balance between the hydrological parameters and the flora and fauna makes it susceptible to larger implications due to the warming rates of climate. This zone comprises about 12 river basins, out of which the Indus forms the most important and extensive river system along with its tributaries and water bodies spreading over several countries. Indus River plays an important role to fulfill the water requirement of agriculture and domestic use in the Himalayan region. The present study was conducted to evaluate the impact of climate change on water resources in the Himalayan region and its sustainability. An in-depth inventory of the basin was discussed in the light of the changing climatic conditions. Research carried out in the Himalayan region on water resources in climate change scenario is reviewed and the effects of climate change on precipitation, river flows, glaciers, and extreme hydrological events have been discussed. The change in climate often leads to higher rates of evapo-transpiration, lesser rainfall, and drying up of the basin. The researchers have clearly indicated adverse changes in the hydrological cycle, water reserves, biodiversity and the quality of human life in the region because of the global warming. The study of the warming trends, decreasing precipitation, increased climate-induced disasters such as floods and Glacier Lake Outburst Floods (GLOFs) will help in minimizing the adverse impact of climate change on hydrology and water resources of the basin by developing strategies to attain sustainable development and management of the whole region.

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