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July 21 meetings and excursions in Moscow

July 22 transfer to Barnaul

July 23 plenary meeting sectional meetings

July 24 meetings of IGU Commissions and Working Groups

July 25-28 field excursions

July 29 transfer to Moscow and departure of participants from Moscow

July 30 departure of participants from Moscow

Information on Registration

Participants intending to take part in the Conference are invited to send the filled in Registration Form by mail, Fax or e-mail to:

General Secretary of the Conference

Dr. Larisa Mokrushina

109017 Moscow, Staromonetny per. 29

Institute of Geography

Russian Academy of Sciences

Fax: (095) 959 00 33

Ph: (095) 959 00 29


The deadline for receipt of abstracts of papers was December 31, 2002.
Preparation of abstracts:

Length: maximum of A4 page. Type in Times New Roman, single spaced, with all margins 2,5 cm.

Title of paper: Centred, upper and lower case, bold, 12-point font.

Leave two lines

Author(s): Centred, lower case (first letter of name or initials caps), normal, 12 point font. First or given names first, then surname or family name.

Leave one line

Authors’ afflications and email address: Centred, lower case (first letter of afflication caps), not bold, 10-point font.

Leave two lines

Text, 10-point font, single spaced, justify right and left hand margins.

Leave one line between paragraphs.
The registration fee is to be paid after the registration is confirmed by the Organizing Committee. Registration fees of delegates and students ensure:

  • all Circulars of the Conference,

  • participation in all scientific sessions,

  • copies of all materials of the Conference,

  • transfer from airports and back in Barnaul,

  • transfer from hotels to the place of the meeting,

  • coffee and tea during meetings,

  • receptions on the occasion of opening and closing of the Conference.

Registration fees do not include the price of the air fare Moscow-Barnaul-Moscow and payment for excursions. The air fare Moscow-Barnaul- Moscow is $200.

Accompaning persons who filled in the registration form and paid the registration fee may take part in the opening and closing ceremonies of the Conference, social program and excursions.
Organizing Committee:

Chairman of the Organizing Committee

Academician Vladimir Kotlyakov

Director, Institute of Geography, RAS

Chairman, National Committee of Geographers of Russia; Honored President , Russian Geographical Society

Phone: (095) 959 00 32

Fax: (095) 959 00 33

e-mail: igras@igras.geonet.ru


Prof. Yurii.Vinokurov

Chairman, Altai Regional Section, Russian Geographical Society

Phone: (385 2) 36 78 55

Fax: (385 2) 24 03 96

e-mail: iwep@iwep.ab.ru
Prof. Nikita Glazovsky

Member, Russian Academy of Sciences

IGU Vice-President

Phone: (095) 959 00 40

Fax: (095) 959 00 33

e-mail: nikita@ntserver.cis.lead.org

Prof. Nikolai Kasimov

Member, Russian Academy of Sciences

Vice-President, Russian Geographical Society

Phone: (095) 939 20 17

Fax: (095) 939 22 38


Prof. Yurii Seliverstov

President, Russian Geographical Society

Phone: (812)315 8535

Fax: (812)315 6312

e-mail: rgo@spb.org.ru
Conference Secretariat

General Secretary

Dr. Larisa Mokrushina,

Dr. I rina Rotanova

7.12 Ladakh Art, Culture and Languages

11th IALS Colloquium at LEH and KARGIL,

21-27 July 2003
We are happy to announce the details of the 11th Colloquium of the International Association for Ladakh studies. The conference will be hosted by Jammu & Kashmir Academy of Art, Culture and Languages from 21st to 27th of July 2003 in Leh. The theme of the colloquium will be Art, Culture and Languages of Ladakh, and we encourage abstracts of papers and proposals for panels on these topics, although other themes are welcome, too.

IALS Colloquia have been held regularly, usually every other year, since 1981. The proceeding of the first eight conferences have been published and those of the 9th and 10th are in preparation. Past conferences have provided a valuable forum both for formal and informal discussions and debates. In order to promote broad participation from all over Ladakh, the colloquium will consist of two consecutive sessions with one each to be held at Leh and at Kargil. The first three days of the colloquium i.e. from 21st to 23rd of July, 2003 will take place in Leh. On the 24th, participants will move to Kargil, where the second part of the colloquium will take place on 25th and 26th of July.

The normal registration/participation fee will be US $50, but reduced to Rs. 250 for participants from SAARC (South Asian) countries. Participants are asked to register their interest in attending the colloquium by filling and returning the enclosed application form by January 31, 2003. Those who wish to present papers are required to submit an abstract of their proposed papers to the Academy and to Hon.Sec. John Bray by 31st of March, 2003 (See Bray's contact details on the inside cover of this issue). Papers should be based on original research. All participants should be paid up members of the IALS. You are welcome to join or renew at the conference itself. Only those who are pre-registered can be sure to receive future communication regarding the conference. Limited support is available to subsidize participants' travel expenses. Subsidies will be awarded on the basis of need and presentation of a substantial paper at the conference is a precondition for such support. Free local transportation will be provided by the hosts.


Please note that it is the responsibility of all the delegates to ensure that they have the appropriate visa. Letter of invitation will be provided as required. Please send all communications by post, e-mail or fax to the convenors:-
Balwant Thakur, Secretary

Nawang Tsering Shakspo, Cultural Officer,

Jammu and Kashmir Academy of Art, Culture and Languages,

Canal Road Leh-Ladakh 194101

Jammu 180001

Tel/fax +91(0)1982-52088

Tele/fax: +91(0)191-542640&579474

e-mail: sntsering52@yahoo.co.uk

7.13  The Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment (GMBA) of DIVERSITAS

Second GMBA Symposium on

"Linking mountain diversity with fire, grazing and erosion"

20-23th August 2003

La Paz (Bolivia)
-Patronage: DIVERSITAS; AMA Andean Mountains Association

-Sponsors: Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation; FAO; UNESCO

-Organizers: Eva Spehn, GMBA Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment, Switzerland

Maximo Liberman Cruz & Eduardo Palenque, University of La Paz, Bolivia

Elisabeth Huber-Sannwald, IPICYT, San Luis Potosí, Mexico

Alejandro Velázquez, UNAM, Morelia, Mexico

-Aims of the GMBA symposium:

The main objective of this GMBA symposium is to summarize existing knowledge and to identify approaches to sustainable agriculture in montane/alpine areas for both, sustainable carrying capacity and biodiversity in subtropical and tropical countries. According to the GMBA scope, we seek contributions with a focus in the uppermost zone of the montane forest or its substitute range land and the tropical-alpine zone.

The symposium will have paper presentations and group discussions. We are looking for contributions from the Andes, but also from other mountain ranges, specifically on:

- land use effects on biological richness of mountains

- functional importance of biodiversity for ground cover, soil stability, pasture quality,

- links between biodiversity among organismic groups (plants vs. animals)

- information on sustainable carrying capacity of the uplands for grazing (comparison of ways of pasturing or fire cycle management)

- Sustainable use/restoration of upper montane forest (food, fiber, energy)

A thematically parallel GMBA symposium in cooperation with the 6th International Conference of the African Mountains Association took place in August 2002 in Moshi, Tanzania, collecting knowledge on Mountain biodiversity and sustainable land use mainly in African Mountains – which should now be compared to experiences in the Andes. We therefore encourage participants from the Andes and S and SE Asia in particular. Plans exist to lump the results of both workshops into one state of the art assessment product.

Sponsorship for a limited number of participants to the conference is available, especially for participants from Andean or other developing countries. See attachment for conditions and application form.

-Languages: English and Spanish will be the languages at the symposium.
Please send all correspondence to GMBA@unibas.ch

15th January 2003 - Submission of registration form and outline of paper

15th January 2003 - Submission of financial application form for those requesting funding (obligatory written contribution)

15th April 2003 - Submission of final paper

Please note: Right after the GMBA symposium the 2nd Congress of Conservation of Biodiversity in the Andes and the Amazon Basin and IV Ecuadorian Botanical Congress takes place in Loja, Ecuador (25-30 August 2003). For more information and registration please see the official website: http://www.biodiversidad.utpl.edu.ec or directly contact Dr. Rainer W. Bussmann:


Contact by e-mail to gmba@unibas.ch or by mail or fax (+41 61 267 35 04) to GMBA office, Institute of Botany, University of Basel, Schönbeinstrasse 6, 4056 Basel, Switzerland
For a number of participants from developing countries, GMBA can offer financial support to attend the symposium.

Please fill in the form below and send it to gmba@unibas.ch before 15th January 2003.

Please provide the following information:

1. Surname: First names:

2. Date of Birth: Place of birth:

3. Sex:

4. Nationality:

5. Academic qualifications:

6. Institutional affiliation and address:

7. Telephone: Fax: E-mail:

8. Brief summary of professional career:

9. Brief summary of work experience relevant to the sxmposium theme:

10.Title of contribution:
Abstract (please add abstract of your contribution here if not previously sent):

Relevance of contribution to GMBA symposium theme (please specify in a short paragraph):

Please note: Forms must be fully completed and sent before 15th of January 2003 to be considered for funding.
Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment (GMBA)

Dr. Eva Spehn, GMBA office

Institute of Botany, University of Basel

Schoenbeinstr.6, 4056 Basel, Switzerland

Tel: ++41 (0)61 267 35 11, Fax: ++41 (0)61 267 35 04

email: gmba@unibas.ch


7.14  Rural Development In Upland Landscapes: Environment, People, Constraints And Opportunities

(RGS-IBG Annual Conference, Royal Geographical Society)

3 - 5 September 2003

London, UK

Contact: rhys.evans@abdn.ac.uk, Martin.Price@perth.uhi.ac.uk

URL: http://www.cms.uhi.ac.uk/rgsmrg/mrgmeetings.htm#2003


Dr. Rhys Evans [RGRG]

Arkleton Centre For Rural Development Research, University of Aberdeen

St. Mary's, Kings College,

Old Aberdeen, AB24 3UF

Tel. 00 44 (0)1224 481 328



Dr. Martin Price [MRG]

Centre for Mountain Studies, Perth College, UHI Millennium Institute

Crieff Road



Tel: +44 (0) 1738-877217

Fax: +44 (0) 1738-877018


This set of three sessions uses upland landscapes as a focus for exploring interrelationships between human action (society, culture, economics, politics and policy, etc.) and biophysical environments (forests, agricultural land, moorland, 'unmanaged' and 'protected' ecosystems etc.) in upland areas. It builds on a series of four sessions at the 2002 RGS-IBG Annual Conference in Belfast, titled "Upland Landscapes". We welcome contributions from researchers dealing with upland landscapes with regard to any of the themes above (or others). In particular, we challenge you to look to your own work to identify the ways in which research and/or policy are challenged, compromised or empowered by the intersection of multiple influences which do not fit easily within a single academic or policy discipline. WE also challenge to think of ways in which interdisciplinary working might offer greater opportunities for understanding the production of mountain landscapes, and therefore, their utilisation, preservation, regulation, and regeneration. Specific topics of papers may include (but not be limited to) the particular opportunities and challenges facing the rural development of upland landscapes in terms of: environmental issues; the economic development of communities and land; social and cultural capacity building; the regulation of, and financial instruments related to, upland environments and activities; and cross-border collaboration in development and management. We also welcome critical reflections upon the practice of research and policy making in these areas.
Please send titles and abstracts (up to 200 words) by the 28th February 2003 to one of the two e-mail/ mail addresses above.

7.15  Worlds of Mountains. Biannual Meeting of German Geographers


Berne, Switzerland
Panel: Local Strategies of Resource Management: Development, Constraints and Potentials for the Sustainability of Water and Energy Supplies

Water and energy significantly determine the setup of production and reproduction within rural communities and mountainous

regions of developing countries and even in developed societies. There, highly differentiated and also sustainable strategies for the management of common property resources had been developed at the local level. However, indigenous and especially external forces eventually lead to increasingly fragile and vulnerable livelihood systems.

For this panel, we except either "state of the art"-presentations or case studies regarding local strategies of sustainable resource management, including the often conflicting issue of access to resources as well as the generally diverse political and economical frameworks.

Our own focus is on the periphery of developing countries and on mountain regions and we invite scholars and practioners to submit abstracts (max 3,000 characters) until Sept. 30th, 2002 by email, preferably in German, but English will also be o.k.

jclemens@sai.uni-heidelberg.de For more information please check the conference-website: www.geotag.ch

Dr. Juergen Clemens

South Asia Institute,

University of Heidelberg,

Germany jclemens@sai.uni-heidelberg.de

7.16  Enhancing the Southern Appalachian Forest Resource

2 - 3 October 2003

Hendersonville, NC, USA

Contact: susan_moore@ncsu.edu

URL: http://www.ncsu.edu/feop/symposium

7.17  Implementation of the Alpine Convention through the example of transportation

(Annual conference of CIPRA 2003)

23 - 25 October 2003

Vienna, Austria

Contact: cipra@umweltdachverband.at

7.18  International Year of water International workshops and exchange of experiences

Topic: Climatic changes. Integrated water management

November 2003, Valais/Switzerland

Organized by: Foundation for the Sustainable Development of the Mountain Regions in partnership with the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC).
At this occasion, the Foundation will invite 20 to 30 participants (professionals working in the field of development, local political decision makers, representatives of local development organizations, researchers) coming from various mountain regions of the world (in particular countries of Eastern Europe and of the South). Field visits, workshops of discussion and exchanges with Swiss and European professionals will be programmed.

On February 25, a working group will meet to define the detailed program of these workshops by taking into account the needs of the mountain countries concerned and what the experiment of our region (the Swiss Alps) can bring.

Within this time, we would appreciate that you inform us any topics which concern you in the field of managing of water or any case studies which could have value of examples for other mountain regions. All your information will be useful for us to define the contents of our workshops. In return, we will be happy to inform you about the workshops results or to invite you to take part at them, once the conditions of participation will be defined.

In your answer, we would be grateful to you to be as concrete as possible and to detail your proposal. On our side, we already thought of the following general topics:

  • Climatic changes impacts: hydro-electricity, tourism, drinking water, agriculture

  • Experiments, reflexions in the field of participative water management

  • Water management : catch system, sanitation, distribution of water or access to water

  • Water management: drinking water, water of irrigation, purification, use of water as sources of energy.

  • Natural dangers: dryness, floods, etc

  • Integrated water management : the best use of the water to provide maximum benefits

The discussion is opened and we are sure that the stakes related to this international year of water will concern you.
Jean-Marc Page

Coordinateur de projets

Fondation pour le développement durable

des régions de montagne

Pré d'Amédée 17 - CH-1950 SION

Tél. +41 27 323 06 85 / Fax +41 27 323 06 86

info.fddm@netplus.ch / www.fondation2006.ch

7.19  Banff Mountain Summit 2003 - Mountains As Water Towers

23 - 26 November 2003

Banff, Canada

Contact: paula_rondina@banffcentre.ca

7.20  Invitation for inputs to the Compendium of "Success Stories from the Mountains of Vietnam"

Mr. Christian Sloth. Forestry Specialist

FAO Representation

3 Nguyen Gia Thieu


Ph.: 844 9424208

Fax: 844 9423257

Email: sloth@fao.org.vn

For more information on the IYM2002 please visit http://www.mountains2002.org

30th International Geographical Congress

IGU Commission C00.24. Diversity in Mountain Systems

Three special sessions on mountains are scheduled.

15-20 August 2004

Glasgow, Scotland

Tentative sessions:

"Biotic and natural landscape diversity in mountain systems" (Convenor: NN)

"Political and social diversity in mountain systems" (Convenor: Joerg Stadelbauer)

"Integrated approach to the diversity in mountain systems" (Convenor: Martin Price)

Congress website: http://www.geog.nau.edu/igust/Glasgow2004.html

Prof. Dr. Jörg Stadelbauer

Institut für Kulturgeographie


D-79085 Freiburg i. Br.

Fax +49 761 203 3575

E-mail: joerg.stadelbauer@geographie.uni-freiburg.de

8 Bibliography, Recent Publications

[Some 60 stories can be accessed online at or from http://www.spinybabbler.org/young_minds_of_20_nations/index.php Feel free to forward the above link to your kids, nephews, nieces, brothers, sisters and whoever. Thanks to ICOD/ICIMOD

for making the following brief available.]
'Mountains Forever', Para Limbu (ed)

Kathmandu: ICIMOD, Helvetas, Spiny Babbler. December 2001

'Mountains Forever'is a book of stories about mountains by young mountain people from 20 nations, written for their counterparts in other mountain countries across the world. It is the final outcome of the 'The Twenty Nation Essay and Short Story Program', a consortium of young artists and writers based in Kathmandu who focus on the creative use of art to improve people's lives, with the support of a small grant award from the Swiss-funded ICIMOD 'Asia Pacific Mountain Network' project. Publication of the book was co-sponsered by Helvetas Nepal, as a contribution to the celebrations of the IYM 2002.

The stories range in tone from light-hearted to the poignant; many borrow from local religions, legends, and cultures, some tell of threatened environments, some of challenges, some of joys. There are stories of birds migrating from Siberia - and being shot at in Bangladesh; encounters with Bigfoot and the Yeti; the joy of 'summitting'the Great Wall of China; a magic mountain in Fiji; a mountain quest in India; a wise fox in Iran; the wonderous creature Kappa on Mount Fuji; a stairway to heaven in Kazakhstan; a baby leopard defending its mother in Sri Lanka - and a boy from Bhutan who asks his father why they live so far away from the plains and is told "Mountains Forever!" A group of hearing-impared children from the Philippines recount the joy of bringing a degraded mountain side back to life with new trees, and the special symbolism of this has for them; a student from Sri Lanka imagines life as a Sherpa child, and recounts a family trek to Mount Everest and the death her father in an avalanche. The result of this wealth of stories is inspirational, they will lift your spirits - these young writers clearly love their mountains and plan to protect them when they are adults.

The book is richly illlustrated with more than 60 full-cover plates of artwork by Param Myangbo, a young woman artist from Nepal. Every story is accompanied by a vibrant painting. Thick black lines emphasise oversize animals, people and plants in vibrant reds, greens, and yellows. Thumbnail sketches of the contributors complete the volume. The pictures match the short, direct-style of writing: straight forward and powerful - a wonderful book for people of all ages.

'Mountains Forever', Para Limbu (ed)

Kathmandu: ICIMOD, Helvetas, Spiny Babbler. December 2001

182p, 61 full-color plates


Price: US$25.00 [Developed countries]

US$20.00 [Developing countries]

US$ 15.00 {ICIMOD member countries]

POB 3226, Kathmandu

Nepal Ph: +977-1 525313


online: http://www.icimod.org

The Geographical Review Volume #92, no. 2 (April 2002)

Special Issue: Mountain Geography

One of the leading journals of geography in the United States has just published a special issue devoted entirely to "Mountain Geography" that I think worthy of your attention. One editorial and seven articles chronicle mountain topics ranging from the health of women and children in the Himalaya, through human influenced treeline in the Andes to environmental change in and cultural perceptions of mountains in North America. All the pieces are of the highest quality writing, are well illustrated and are on the cutting edge of mountain research. The full citation and table of contents can be found below along with information for ordering the entire issue if you so choose.

Table of Contents:

Donald A. Friend: Mountain Geography in 2002: The International Year of the Mountains, p. iii-vi

Kevin S. Blake: Colorado Fourteeners and the Nature of Place Identity, p. 155-179

Mark W. Williams, Mark V. Losleben, and Hillary B. Hamann: Alpine Areas in the Colorado Front Range as Monitors of Climate Change and Ecosystem Response, p. 180-191

Andrew Bach: Snowshed Contributions to the Nooksack River Watershed, Noth Cascades Range, Washington, p. 192-212

Fausto O. Sarmiento: Anthropogenic Change in the Landscapes of Highland Ecuador, p. 213-234

Brad D. Jokisch and Bridget M. Lair: One Last Stand? Forests and Change on Ecuador’s Eastern Cordillera, p. 235-256

Sarah J. Halvorson; Environmental Health Risks and Gender in the Karakoram Himalaya, Northern Pakistan, p. 257-281

James S. Gardner: Natural Hazards Risk in the Kullu District, Himachal Pradesh, India, 282-306
Ordering Information:

The American Geographical Society

120 Wall Street, Suite 100

New York, NY 10005-3904

Tel: 1-212-422-5456

Fax: 1-212-422-5480

Email: AGS@amergeog.org

Web: http://www.amergeog.org

$30.00 (USD) per issue in the USA; $4.50 (USD) additional to ship overseas
Donald A. Friend, Ph.D.

Advisory Board, Mountain Geography Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers

US Representative, International Geographical Union, Commission on Diversity in Mountain Systems

Associate Professor of Geography

Director of Earth Science Programs

Department of Geography, Minnesota State University

Armstrong Hall 7; Mankato, MN 56001, USA

507-389-2618 office; 507-389-2980 fax



Himalayan Environment Trust : Himalaya online

(India's largest circulated monthly internet newsletter for the mountaineers and environmentalists)

Volume 2, No.1: January-February 2003
Board of Trustees

Chairman:Captain M. S. Kohli

Founder Trustees: Sir Edmund Hillary (Patron), Sir Chris Bonington, Junko Tabei, Maurice Herzog, Reinhold Messner, Richard Blum, Kazbek Valiev and Sushil Gupta.

Advisors:Dr. Karan Singh, Ko Yoshida, Dick Smith and Ken Chamberlain

Ex-Officio Trustees: President UIAA, Chairman Outward Bound International, President UAAA, President Indian Mountaineering Foundation, President Nepal Mountaineering Foundation, President Chinese Mountaineering Association, President Pakistan Alpine Club, Director General ICIMOD, Director King Mahendra Trust for Nature Conservation, Director Sagarmatha Pollution Control Committee, Director Tourism Royal Government of Bhutan, Director GB Pant Institute for Himalayan Environment and Development, Director HET Lt. General Sushil Kumar; Honorary Jt. Director HET R.S. Somi, Director Eco Tourism Mandip Soin, Director Conferences Captain Swadesh Kumar, Director Technical Raj Gujral, Director Forestry Dr. T.P. Singh, Legal Advisor Rakesh Munjal, Editor Yogendra Bali, Travel Photographer and Graphic Designer Dushyant Parasher.

Editorial Board: Yogendra Bali, R.S Somi, Hony Editor

Gandhi & Environment

New Delhi: Mahatma Gandhi's entire life and dead, indeed, is an environmental bequest for the whole mankind. This is not because, he wrote big volumes of books on environment, led a people's movement to oppose the construction of large-scale-dam project or spent his life- time for cleaning Ganga or whatsoever; rather because, he was a true practitioner of environmentally sustainable development in the real sense, by his very personal life-style, he has adopted in his day-to-day life. Here is a being, who is in harmony and peace with environment and himself, although his whole life was spent locked in an unequal battle with a mighty empire. His strength came to him on account of his spirituality and practice of non-violence and truth. In wider sense, these are the critical elements for the success of practicing sustainable development in true spirit. His whole life, was his message and a lesson on "Protecting and Conserving Environment along with the Development Process", not only for Indians, but also for the whole world to follow at large. (Yj Oct'02)

Dr. Karan Singh and Nature

New Delhi: "Nature is an intrinsic part of my being. As I grew up in the valley of my dreams, Kashmir, being with naturecame naturally. Since the last few years, I have been trying to save the green belts, wildlife and environment. I feel that's the least I can do for something that's so valuable in my life." (TOI - 241102)

Initiatives to protect world’s mountain ranges

New York: The world's mountain ranges, so vital to sustaining life, face unprecedented challenge which must be met by a concerted international response, UN Secy Gen Kofi Annan said on 29 October. "More than half of humanity depends on mountains for safe water to grow food, to produce electricity, to sustain industries and, most important, to drink", Mr. Annan said in message to the Global Mountain Summit, held in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. "Mountains also host more biodiversity than any other part of our planet - more even then lowland rainforests". Despite their important ecological contributions, fragile mountain ecosystems are in danger, he warned, "Every day, climate change, pollution, exploitive mining and logging, and unsound agricultural practices take a heavy toll." Urging participants to deepen the partnership, he pointed out that all people have a stake in ensuring the health of the planet's mountain regions. "This is a challenge the world's peoples can and must scale together", he said in the message, which was delivered by Johannes van Ginkel, the Rector of the UN University. (UN Weekly Newsletter 281102)

UNEP’s Sasakawa Prize

Nairobi: The UN Environment Programme's Sasakawa Prize for outstanding contribution to protecti on of the global environment was awarded to Dr. Ashok Khosla of the Indian NGO, Development Alternative. Dr. Khosla was among the first who taught about the environment at Harvard University. (TOI 221102)

Wilds of Rudyard Kipling’s ‘The Jungle Book’ named the Indira Gandhi Priyadarshani Pench National Park

Bhopal: The Madhya Pradesh (M.P.) State Government renamed the Pench National Park after the late prime minister of India on her birth anniversary on November 19, 2002. Pench is the place where Mowgli, Kipling's 'human cub' was found and nurtured by a pack of wolves. The beautiful geographical landscapes of this jungle in Chhindwara district of south M.P. finds elaborate mention throughout 'The Jungle Book' where Bhaghera (the tigress) and Balu (the bear) played with Mowgli, and Sher Khan strutted with arrogance. (TOI 181102)

Restore Everest's Tibetan Name

Guilin (China): "It is time for the world to rectify the error made by British Colonialists over a century ago", Chinese and Tibetan experts were quoted as saying by Xinhua News Agency. Westerners continue to refer to the peak as Mount Everest rather than Tibetan's Goddess Qomolangma, the peak's original name. (T 201102)

India slips from No.1 rank in Tourism

Guilin (China): India which held the top spot among the list of fastest growing travel and tourism economies in the world in 2000, has yielded the position to Turkey this year with China surging ahead to take the top spot in 2003. This fact was disclosed here by the President of the World Travel and Tourism Council. (T 201102)

Canada Assistance to Uttaranchal

Dehradun: Mr. Robert Woodhouse, Head of the Community Based Economic Development (CBED) Project, Canada who is currently in India to attend a symposium on mountain farming, said that the Canadian International Development Agency was keen on rendering assistance to Uttaranchal in agriculture, industry and tourism development. He met Chief Minister N.D. Tiwari and apprised him of the various ongoing funding as well as technical assistance schemes in Uttaranchal. (Tribune 231102)

'Roof of Africa' snow meltdown

Tanzania: Known as the 'Roof of Africa', Mt. Kilimanjaro's snow cap is melting fast and could be gone in two decades. The spot attracts 20,000 trekkers every year, many of whom this year were disappointed to find no snow on its peak. Researchers say that the glaciers on the top of Kilimanjaro measured 12 sq km in 1912 but had shrunk to just 2.6 sq km by 2000. Although scientists say glacier elsewhere are melting due to global warming, they feel further work needs to be done to establish the cause of Kilimanjaro's meltdown. (DTE 301102)

Siachin - Peace Park or a science centre?

New Delhi: Siachin glacier region is the longest non-polar glacier in the world. Temperatures plummet to a mind and body freezing minus 40 degrees centigrade; fierce winds blowing at speeds in excess of 150 km p. h. penetrate even the most modern protective clothing, and the deprivation factors can be morale shattering. On the Indian side, in this highest battleground in the world, at any rate, it is reported that 80%, of the casualties are weather and avalanche/ crevasse related. There is another casualty, one with far greater ramifications on human existence, that has been given the complete go-by; damage caused to, and sustained by the environment. Convoys of trucks, helicopters, artillery shelling, empty fuel containers, discarded tetra-packs and aluminum packaging, and human waste in metal drums dropped into deep crevasses could do damage to pristine environs. The glaciers and melting snows contribute 70 percent of the water that feeds the rivers. Will these rivers eventually dry up and become seasonal flows? A possible solution is establishment of a 'trans-frontier peace park' in the Siachin area. First and foremost, this would preserve for posterity the world's most spectacular mountain region. It would also enable both countries (India and Pakistan) to demilitarise and withdraw their forces, without losing face. There are 169 such 'peace parks' in 113 countries. Some of these were conceived specifically with the intention of providing a peaceful solution to conflict zones. An example is the La Amistad Peace Park between Costa Rica and Nicaragua. In 1998, Kent Biringer of the Cooperative Monitoring Centre, Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico, USA, proposed that the Siachin area be demiliterised and converted into a vast scientific laboratory that he called 'Siachin Science Centre'. Protocols in the Antarctic Treaty with modifications can be adopted in this case. This mountain range is the portal to the southwest monsoon, on which the entire sub-continent is dependent. This assault on the Himalayas spells disaster to India and Pakistan both if the Siachin glacier does dry up, as also to other immediate neighbours. (DTE 301102)

Environmental Awareness campaingn in J&K

Srinagar: The volunteers of NOOR (Nature's Oath to Obtain Reliance) are deeply engrossed in a mission that started about a year ago as part- time activism: creating awareness about activities harmful to the environment, particularly among people living in remote areas. Their concerns range from wildlife protection to solid waste management. They tried to prevent the use of plastics through viable alternatives, like jute and paper bags which they purchased inscribed with information and slogans on environment protection, and distributed among shopkeepers. Shopkeepers commended their campaign but say that the initiative to ban use of plastics must come from the government. Although the situation in Kashmir does not permit them to be fully engrossed in this work, they are doing all they can. (DTE 301102)

IYM Celebrations in ITBP

New Delhi: Achievements of ITBP for the preservation of Himalayan ecological system and environment during the International Year of Mountain are praiseworthy. A few of the activities were plantation of 56,000 tree plants in Himalayan region, disposal of over 42,000 kg non-biodegradable garbage by cleanliness drive in mountains, organising more than 100 lectures on awareness on eco-system and environment preservation, 6 mountaineering expeditions with additional objective of cleaning the mountains, organised 40 awareness rallies of Himalayan eco-system, maintaining bridges and tracks in remote border areas etc. HET Chairman Capt. M.S. Kohli has been instrumental in introducing mountaineering in the force in its formative years and continues to advise them on matters relating to Himalayan environment. (TOI 311202)

Tourism Board constituted in Uttaranchal

Dehradun: Uttaranchal Tourism Development Board (UTDB), the first statutory body of its kind in the country, has been constituted as the highest body for the development of tourism in Uttaranchal with Tourism Minister, Chief Secretary, Tourism Secretary as Chairman, Vice-Chairman and CEO respectively. The Board has wide representation including non-government experts and representatives of the tourism trade. The Board, besides formulating and implementing development plans and projects, will frame norms, guidelines, regulations and bye-laws for different tourism activities. It shall also function as Regulatory and Licensing Authority. Its offices are located at 3/3 Industrial Area, Patel Nagar, Saharanpur Road, Dehradun - 248001 (email : nareshnp@sancharnet.in). (TOI 311202)

Diamond Jubilee of the HimalayanClub

Mumbai: The Himalayan Club is in its 75th year of establishment. The 58th Volume of its prestigious journal has been brought out. Members' List is also being updated. (For details visit the website: www.himalayanclub.com) (Circular 030902)

Khatri Water harvesting revived

Hamirpur: The people of Hamirpur in Himachal Pradesh realised that piped water is at best unreliable, they came together to revive the Khatris, their traditional water harvesting structures. The first kind of Khatris, the rainwater is collected from the roof through pipes and used for washing and bathing purposes. In the second type, water collects in the Khatris through seepage, and this water is used for drinking. These Khatris are properly washed and cleaned periodically. (DTE 250902)

Johar check Dams in Uttaranchal

Dehradun: To increase water supply in the springs, the villagers of Nahin-Barkot in Dehradun worked to construct seven Johars (earthen check dams for rainwater harvesting). This helped arrest the run-off, and ensured rainwater seepage into the earth. The villagers here also came together to file a public interest litigation in the Supreme Court to close destructive limestone mining in the area: Two dharas in the village perennial, a spring that has been dry for long has been rejuvenated. This has proved that water and the forests are inextricably linked. (DTE 250902)

Plunder of Aravalli Hills banned

New Delhi: The Supreme Court of India has banned mining activities in Aravalli range falling in Haryana and Rajasthan. A large part of the Aravalli area has forests protected by the Environment (Protection) Act which provides that the forest land cannot be put to any non-forest use like mining. From New Delhi to Mount Abu, the Aravalli hills have been denuded of vegetation and plundered indiscriminately for sand and silica used in construction activity. A study of the Central Pollution Control Board has found that mining has lowered the watertable in Delhi and Haryana areas, the shrinking forest area of Aravalli has disturbed the environmental balance, and the quality of air has gone down affecting the health of the residents in the area besides the noise pollution which has crossed tolerable limits. (T 221102)

Roads in Indian Himalayas

New Delhi: Major General B.C. Khanduri, Minister of State of the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Govt. of India informed the Upper House of the Parliament that the length of national highways in the Himalayan States is as follows: J&K-823, Uttaranchal-1075, Himachal Pradesh-1188, Sikkim-62, Arunachal Pradesh-392, West Bengal (Hilly Areas)-147 (all in kilometres). (Q. 2383 121202 R S)

Mountain Tourist Circuits

New Delhi: Delivering the inaugural address at a national seminar on 'India - Land of Mountains', Hon'ble Shri Jagmohan, Minister of Tourism, Govt. of India mentioned several mountain circuits in the Himalayas which would be developed to promote eco-tourism in the mountains. They are: Manali-Rohtang-Sarchu-Upshi-Leh, Shimla-Sangla-Kaza-Keylong-Leh, and pilgrim circuits in Uttaranchal - Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, Yamunotri, Joshimath, Hemkund Sahib. Rishikesh and Hardwar towns would also be improved. A national committee on Eco-tourism and Mountaineering had already been constituted by the Ministry. Efforts are afoot to establish inter-state and intra-country Himalayan Authorities. Possibilities of making Siachen glacier to develop into a high altitude national park will be discussed on a suitable occasion in future. (Outlook.com Nov 2002)

Workshop on Medicinal Plants in H.P.

Kullu: In an international workshop on endagered medicinal plant species in Himachal Pradesh (18-19 March 02) held at Mohal-Kullu under the auspices of G.B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment & Development, forty experts from diverse disciplines gathered to discuss the subject in four technical sessions namely - Endangered species diversity characterisation and evaluation, Production through cultivation, Trade, Linkages, and Ethics, Conservation Approaches. Following four basic criteria were considered to prioritise species, viz. : Endangered status (based as literature and local perception), knowledge base (on population studies, multiplication technology and cultivation trials), Cultivation prospects (technical and economic feasibility), Marketability. (For more details contact email: badolahk@hotmail.com (G.B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment Development)

Community's involvement in Ecotourism

Dehradun: People who are connected with conservation regard tourism as a threat. Those who are involved in tourism look upon conservation as an impediment to development. No one is looking at the interface between tourism and conservation. As a result, the opportunity to use ecotourism as a tool to enhance conservation is lost. Worse still, detrimental tourism flourishes. The Corbett Binsar Nainital Ecotourism Initiative, in the leadership of Mr. Rajiv Bhartari, a LEAD (Leadership for Environment and Development) Fellow, is trying to address these issues. Much of the best natural wealth is under the government, whereas the cultural resources belong to the people. At times, the people themselves are the cultural resources. Tourist are not looking, for a location, but an 'experience' like walking or bird watching. A person doesn't need to go into the heart of the national park to enjoy that. The community such experience outside these reserves as well. In Australia, this is done by selling meticulous business-oriented research and data. Ecotourism is much more heavily inclined to learning and evolving than usual businesses. (DTE 250902)

News and articles about Himalayas, its various aspects, especially the environment and ecological matters are welcome from our members, readers and those who are interested in the Himalayas. The same can be sent to hetrust@del2.vsnl.net.in (a maximum of 400 words). The matter would be included in the forthcoming issues giving due credit to the sender. For previous issues of our Newsletter please visit HET website: www.himalayanenvironment.org
R.S. Mehta

Administrative Officer

The Himalayan Environment Trust

The Legend Inn, E-4, East of Kailash, New Delhi – 110065

Phone: 91-11-6215635 Fax: 91-11-6215635, E-mail: hetrust@del2.vsnl.net.in

website: www.himalayanenvironment.org

9 Scientific networks und projects

UNESCO's unique network of Biosphere Reserves is set to have a new role - monitoring global climate change. Out of the 408 biosphere reserves in 94 countries, 138 are in mountain areas. And mountains are proving to be extremely sensitive to global warming. Melting glaciers have recently unleashed deadly mudslides, rare ecosystems are threatened, and a lack of snow is crippling economies that depend on winter tourism. While the data from these sites will enable scientists to draw a more accurate picture of global climate change, they may also help to offset catastrophes when hazardous conditions develop.

The entire article is available on:


Zagros Mountains / Iran

We have recently embarked on the formulation of a UNDP-GEF mountain biodiversity project (incepted in November 2002). The initiative addresses the threats to the biodiversity-rich central Zagros mountains of Iran. In recent decades, demographic trends, population growth, an influx of large numbers of settlers and the breakdown of traditional management systems have combined to undermine the management of natural resources. As a result, a large chunk of Zagros forest cover has been decimated, and the productivity of the remaining forest, steppe and pasturelands reduced significantly. Many hillsides are now barren and totally unproductive. Soil erosion has increased several-fold, along with associated flash floods and localized droughts. This declining natural resource base is´a threat to both the sustainable development of the local communities and to the biodiversity in the region.

The full project will respond to these challenges by developing new approaches to work closely with local communities, managers and government officials in order to promote sustainable land use and rangeland management. It will facilitate access to and benefit sharing of biodiversity by local communities through measures to promote sustainable utilization of biodiversity and its components and develop a community-based, business approach to biodiversity conservation. The full project will also significantly strengthen management of the existing protected areas and improve coordination at all levels amongst the concerned governmental and non-governmental actors and will build on ongoing and recent initiatives to strengthen mountain ecosystem management within and around 2 or 3 biodiversity rich landscapes.

At present we're implementing the PDF Block B and looking to recruit two international experts (please find more details at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Zagros_TAN ):

- An International Expert on Participatory Appraisal will help develop the appraisal methodology as well as develop the capacity of the national experts undertaking the appraisal, and contribute to the first stages of the appraisal in at least one site.

- An International Expert on Financing Mechanisms will help design the project. He will ensure that the project is designed in an effective manner to address the identified threats through sustainable and innovative financial mechanisms and economic incentives (e.g. access and benefit sharing through establishment of a biodiversity investment facility).

(PLEASE REPLY TO: amfazel@yahoo.com )

Asghar M. FAZEL

National Project Manager

No:9 - Gha'em Magham Ave.

Tehran 15899 - I.R.IRAN

Tel:(21) 88 24 513

Fax:(21) 88 31 297

Mobile:(911) 225 13 08

New URL:

Thanks to the Mountain Forum for providing us with so many fruitful information on mountain activites all over the world!

Please send your informations for further issues of this Newsletter and any criticism to: joerg.stadelbauer@geographie.uni-freiburg.de

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