• Nepal drains dangerous glacial lake near Mount Everest

    Ramesh Tiwari
    November 1, 2016
    Nepal drains dangerous glacial lake near Mount Everest

    Kathmandu ( AFP) : Nepal has successfully drained part of a giant glacial lake near Mount Everest, averting risk of a disastrous flood that could have threatened thousands of lives, officials said on Monday.

    Scientists say climate change is causing Himalayan glaciers to melt at an alarming rate, creating huge glacial lakes which could burst their banks and devastate mountain communities.

    Imja Tsho, located at an altitude of 5,010 metres (16,437 feet), just 10 kilometres (6.2 miles) south of the world’s highest peak, is the fastest-growing glacial lake in Nepal.

    The Himalayan nation was devastated by a 7.8-magnitude earthquake last year, raising alarm about about the risks of flash flooding from glacial lakes.

    “Draining the lake was on the priority of the government because of its high risk. We have successfully mitigated a disaster right now,” Top Bahadur Khatri, the project manager of the Community Based Flood and Glacial Lake Outburst Risk Reduction Project, told AFP.

    Khatri said that the lake, nearly 150 metres deep, had its water lowered by 3.5 metres after six months of rigorous work — draining more than five million cubic metres of water.

    The Nepal government worked together with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to drain the lake.

    A team of 40 Nepal army personnel and more than 100 local high altitude workers worked in shifts since April to complete the project, airlifting or using yaks to transport the equipment.

    “A 45-metres long tunnel was constructed to aid outflow of the lake downstream. We have also installed a mechanical gate to control the discharge,” said Lieutenant Colonel Bharat Lal Shrestha, who led the army team.

    “Because of the wind, snow and thin air, we could work only two or three hours a day. It was a challenging task,” he told AFP.

    The surface area covered by the lake expanded from 0.4 to 1.01 square kilometres between 1984 and 2009, triggering concerns that it may breach its banks and flood villages downstream.

    Experts say that a flood+ would have a catastrophic impact on the lives of more than 50,000 people living in nearby villages and even in southern districts of the country.

    As part of the project, early warning systems have also been installed in villages downstream.

    “Our plan is to now replicate the work in other high-risk glacial lakes,” Khatri said.Nepal is home to some 3,000 glacial lakes.

    In 2014 a major international study warned that glaciers in the Everest region could shrink by 70 percent or disappear entirely by the end of the century, owing to climate change.

    A study published by the Kathmandu-based International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development used satellite imagery to show how Nepal’s glaciers had already shrunk by nearly a quarter between 1977 and 2010.

    Oct. 31 , 2016

    • Connecting you with the world of travel and tourism

      What they say

      Tourism is a people’s sector. One in 10 people in the world are directly or indirectly employed by tourism. Ours is the responsibility to ensure that tourism benefits each and every community, leaving no one behind.
      Tourism’s sustained growth brings immense opportunities for economic welfare and development. Yet, it also brings in many challenges. Adapting our sector to the challenges of safety and security, to constant market changes, to digitalization and the limits of our natural resources should be priorities in our common action.
      As we move towards a future guided by the universal 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), I take upon me to lead UNWTO with a strong focus on building partnerships with public and private sector, fostering jobs and opportunities for all, mastering technology and innovation and advancing sustainability and the fight against climate change.
      I trust that, together with our Member States and our partners from around the world, we can build a more competitive and responsible tourism sector for the benefit of all. I wish you a very happy 2018.
      Zurab Pololikashvili
      UNWTO Secretary-General

      Beautiful China – Year of Integrated Tourism 2018

      China has declared the year 2018 as “Beautiful China-Year of Integrated Tourism”. The slogans are “New Era, New Tourism, New Achievements”; “Region-based Tourism, Brand New Pursuit” according to CNTA.
      http://travelbiznews.com/china-to-observe-2018-as-beautiful-china-year-of-integrated-tourism/

      Travel Fairs ( Jan.- April 2018 )

       *Vakantiebeurs  -Tourism and Recreation Fair
      Utrecht, Netherlands, January 10-14 ,2018

      *Ferien-Messe Wien Int’l Tourism Fair Vienna Vienna, Austria, Jan 11-14

      * CMT / CMT – Die Urlaubsmesse Holiday, Caravanning, Motoring and Tourism , Stuttgart, Germany Jan. 13-21

      *FITUR – Int’l Tourism Trade Fair , Madrid, Spain Jan. 17-21

      *GO Int’l Travel Trade Fair                                          Brno, Czech Republic, Jan. 18-21

      *OTM Outbound Travel Mart ,Mumbai, India, Jan. 18-20

      *Adventure Travel Show , London  20-21 January

      *ASEAN Tourism Forum ( ATF) , Chiang Mai , Thailnd January 22-26

      *EMITT-  East Mediterranean Int’l Tourism and Travel Exhibition ,Istanbul, Turkey, Jan. 25-28

      *SATTE Travel Mart , New Delhi , India            Jan. 31- Feb. 2

      *IMTM – Int’l Mediterranean Tourism Market   Tel Aviv, Israel  , Feb. 6-7

      *India Travel Mart ITM , Ahmedabad, India          Feb. 9-11

      *Travel and Tourism Fair ( TTF) , Chennai , India Feb. 16-18

      *PATA ATRT Conference and Mart , Abu Dhabi , UAE , Feb 21-23

      *Travel and Tourism Fair(TTF) , Bengaluru, India ,Feb. 23-25

      *World Spa and Wellness 2018 , London , UK Feb. 25-26

      *Guangzhou International Travel Fair Guangzhou , China  March 1-3

      *ITB Berlin Berlin , Germany March 7-11

      *Moscow Int. Tourism and Travel Exhibition ( MITT) ,Moscow , Russia March 13-15

      *IT& CM China 2018 , Shanghai , China          March 20 – 22

      *GBTA Conference Mexico City, March 21-23

      *UNWTO World Conference on Snow and Mt. Tourism ,Andorra , March 21-23

      *Arabian Travel Mart –ATM   Dubai , 22-25 April

      Wildlife in Chitawan , Nepal

      Window of Nepal Tourism

      http://www.nepaltournews.com/