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Human Development Report 2007 : Climate change and human development – risk and vulnerability in a warming world : Country Case Study-Nepal
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Climate refers to the average weather and represents the state of the climate system over a given time period. Climate changes over time may be due to natural variability or as a result of human induced increases of greenhouse gases in the atmospheres and is reflected in the variation of the mean state of weather variables including temperature, precipitation and wind (Orindi and Eriksen, 2005).
The impact of global warming is already being felt by the most vulnerable-the world’s poorest people and countries and its impact is severe on Nepal because of the geographical and climatic conditions, high dependence on natural resources and lack of resources to cope with the changing climate. Developed countries are mainly responsible for global warming and they need to take concrete steps and actions to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. However, as climate change will effect everybody, the entire global community needs to work together to address this major problem (CEN, 2003). A series of summits and conferences have stressed the urgent need to combat the threats arising from the anthropogenic emission of GHGs in the atmosphere. UNFCCC is one of them. It has recognized pertinent issues and put emphasis on the capacity building and technology transfer of environmental friendly technologies in developing countries.
Nepal has a negligible share in the global emission. According to the National Communication Report recently prepared by HMG, net emission of CO2 was about 9.747 tonnes and the net emission of methane was estimated to be 0.948 tones in 1994. In addition, annual emission of carbon monoxide (CO) rose slightly from 0.638 million tons/year (mt/yr) in 1990 to 0.693 mt/yr in 1996 with the exception of 2.14 mt/yr in 1994. This fluctuated for sulphur dioxide (SO2) with 0.11 mt/yr in 1994 and 0.028 mt/yr in 1996. A similar situation has been observed for nitrogen oxides (NOx) and TSPs (CBS 1998). Based on these estimates, there is no change in the amount of carbon (only 292 tons/yr) released by deforestation activities. However, carbon released from fuel burning increased by over 60 per cent (from 4.7 to 7.4 mt/yr) between 1985 and 1998. Estimates also indicate that while the total emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) was only 0.2 mt in 1990, it will reach 2.07 mt by 2030. This indicates that the per capita emission of 42.6 kg of CO2 in 1990 was from the use of petroleum products such as kerosene and diesel and this will reach 220.6 kg by 2030 (CSMT 1996 in MOPE, 2000). It is also estimated that Nepal consumes about 12.5 mt/yr of fuelwood, which could roughly emit 5 mt of carbon into the atmosphere. Furthermore, Nepal uses about 30 tons of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and 23 tons of hydro-chlorofluorocarbon (HCF22) in refrigerators, and CFC consumption is increasing at the rate of 10 percent in dairy and commercial refrigeration.
Nepal has a considerable stake in climate change activities. The first is due to its own vulnerable situation and the second is due to international donor driven interests. About 85. 8 percent of the total population reside in rural areas of Nepal and meet their energy demand from biomass combustion, particularly firewood, while about 15 percent of the total population living in urban areas is exposed to different levels of concentration of gases, including greenhouse gases (GHGs). The Himalayas constitute a threatened ecosystem in the world. Himalayas in Nepal are geologically young and fragile and are vulnerable to even insignificant changes in the climatic system. This system is threatened through anthropogenic activities such as farming practices and natural resource consumption patterns.
Publisher:
UNDP ,   (2007 )
Type / Script:
Progress Report in English
Keywords:
CLIMATE CHANGE, GLOBAL WARMING, CLIMATE, CLIMATOLOGY, HUMAN DEVELOPMENT, ATMOSPHERIC TEMPERATURE, WEATHER, GREENHOUSE GASES, CLIMATE CHANGE, CHLOROFLUOROCARBONS, GLACIERS, BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY, FORESTS, WATER RESOURCES, MINERAL RESOURCES, NATURAL RESOURCES, AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, CROPS, HEALTH, DISASTERS, IRRIGATION, FOOD SECURITY, DROUGHT, HUMAN RESOURCES, SANITATION, DEVELOPMENT, ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT
Thematic Group:
 UNDP : Social and Institutional Developoment
Thesaurus:
16.07.00  -  Meteorology
Reference Link:
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