Nepal is no stranger to the threats of nature. The impacts of the devastating earthquake in 2015 still ripple through the country today, as the 900,0000-some people who lost their homes continue to rebuild their lives. With the average global temperatures on an upward trajectory, other threats come sharply into focus. The Himalayas is home to a plethora of glaciers and frozen lakes, which are steadily melting due to climate change. It is estimated that a glacial lake outburst from Imja Lake alone could affect up to half a million people.
The government of Nepal has prioritized adaptation planning to better preparation for such events, as well as life on a warmer planet through the formulation of its National Adaptation Plan (NAP) with support from UN Environment and UNDP and on the agriculture with the support of joint UNDP-FAO NAP-Ag programme funded by the International Climate Intiative (IKI). During the Gobeshona conference in Bangladesh, we met with Ajay Mathema - from the School of Environmental Science and Management at the Pokhara University in Nepal. Mr. Mathema has been following the NAP process since 2015, particularly for generation of knowledge and research. We spoke with Mr. Mathema to discuss how Nepal’s NAP experience is progressing and the role universities are playing in its development.