River Basin and Cryosphere

Increasingly skewed and rapid development, along with climate change, has raised challenges in meeting water, food, and energy demands in the HKH.

about river basin and cryosphere
What do we do?

ICIMOD, through its River Basins and Cryosphere (RBC) Regional Programme

  • Addresses data and knowledge gaps in water and cryosphere science in the region by supporting robust monitoring systems and conducting scientific analyses
  • Promotes climate-smart gender-sensitive practices on water and disaster risk reduction through pilots, demos, and capacity building
  • Supports regional and transboundary cooperation in water and hazard management
  • Provides platforms for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers to talk and collaborate
  • Supports research and pilot outcomes for policy and planning processes in ICIMOD’s regional member countries
Our approach

The RBC Regional Programme aims to address current and emerging issues within the HKH. The programme, through all five of its initiatives, adopts a holistic, flexible and inclusive integrated river basin and cryosphere approach that transcends scale, borders, modalities, and disciplines in research and pilots. This approach includes managing water resources, prioritizing the sustainable use of water and land resources to enhance livelihoods, understanding the role of the cryosphere and scenarios for future water availability, improving the health of environments, and reducing water-related disaster risks in river basins.

Guiding principles for the RBC Regional Programme

The River Basins and Cryosphere Regional Programme operates on four pillars:

  • Adopting an integrated water resource management  and nexus approach to improve our understanding of upstream-downstream linkages and the links between natural resource management and sustainable livelihoods for poor people
  • Developing resiliency and climate change adaptation in the water sector, including mountain community water management benefit sharing, climate services (e.g., flood information sharing), and disaster risk reduction (e.g., floods, droughts, landslides) for poor and vulnerable communities
  • Supporting the implementation of important water and livelihood global agreements such as the Sendai Framework, the Paris Climate Agreement, and water-related sustainable development goals
  • Promote a transdisciplinary and GESI approach to strengthen inclusivity in sustainable water resource management practices
  • Supporting regional collaboration and building regional knowledge platforms and hubs to collate and share information throughout the region