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Water and Climate Specialist,
Water and Air
I work as a Water and Climate Specialist and lead the Climate and Hydrology Group within our Water and Air Theme. My role is to design and implement climate change and hydrological assessment for different projects of ICIMOD. These include climate change projections, impact on hydrological regime, hydrological assessment, flood modelling and predictions, a better understanding of upstream-downstream linkages and integrated water resources management across different river basin scales. I supervise a group of young professionals who provide crucial information about climate change in the HKH region and how it will impact the water resources of major river basins. I have contributed to various initiatives of ICIMOD namely: Koshi Basin, HI-AWARE, SWaRMA, Climate Services, Kailash Sacred landscape, Indus initiative, Cryosphere and Kanchenjunga.
To gather this crucial information, our group uses state-of-the-art tools and technology for climate change projections, downscaling, hydrological modelling and environmental simulations. We help to quantify the environmental changes so that other groups and experts at ICIMOD can design adaptive solutions to the problem. We truly believe that ‘we cannot manage something if we cannot measure it’.
How do you protect the pulse of the planet?
Climate change is affecting every corner of the HKH region from the mountains to the plains and including the vastness of our biodiversity and the diversity of our livelihoods. In this context, mitigation and adaptation are essentially important to protect the pulse and my role is to quantify these changes, especially projecting how climatic changes across the HKH may happen in the future. As a hydrological modeller, I contribute to better understanding of hydrological system dynamics, of climate change impacts on the hydrological regime and how future hydrology will evolve at various scales of the HKH river basins. This information is crucial to design adaptation strategies for people, industries and all water-dependent sectors.
What is your favorite part of the work you do at ICIMOD?
I enjoy working with the multidisciplinary teams in ICIMOD and among our partners, where one can learn from other disciplines. Coming from a mountain hydrology background, I feel proud to see my work contributing to the life of mountain people. This is only possible working with diverse groups of socio-economists, agriculturists and environmentalists. ICIMOD provides that opportunity to see the connections between complex scientific knowledge and local realities.
What are you passionate about?
I enjoy reading and watching things related to cosmology (universe or multiverse). Within this vast space, a tiny blue dot is our home which is the only known living planet and I wonder why and how we are here!!
My main areas of expertise include hydrological modelling and system dynamics, climate change and its impact, upstream-downstream linkages, impact analysis, integrated water resource management and integrated river basin management. I have a PhD degree from the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, Germany on mountain hydrology with focus on upstream-downstream linkages and two Master’s degrees in Environmental Management (Pokhara University) and Anthropology (Tribhuvan University) from Nepal.
Throughout my career, I have sought to understand the upstream-downstream linkages of land and water management in the Himalayan region. I had a previous period of work with ICIMOD when I focused on integrated water resources management, disaster risk reduction, and wetland related issues. I also have prior work experience as an environmental officer in the Butwal Power Company Ltd on environmental impact assessments for hydropower projects, with Nepali NGOs on river conservation, agriculture, environmental management and consultancy work for the World Bank on environmental impact assessment of livelihood related projects.
In 2019, I have contributed to the Special report of Ocean and Cryosphere (SROCC) by the Intergovernmental panel on climate change (IPCC) where I served as a contributing author and chapter scientist for Chapter 2: High Mountain Areas. I also contributed as a contributor author to ‘Water in the Hindu Kush Himalaya’ chapter to the HKH Assessment report.
I have received ‘Nepal Bidhya Bhusan Medal Ka’ from the President of Nepal Dr Ram Saran Yadav in 2013 for my contribution in the field of mountain hydrology and upstream downstream linkages. Similarly, in 2016, I also received prestigious Young Science and Technology Award’ from Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) from the prime minister of Nepal for my scientific contribution in climate change, water resources and its impact on the Himalayan region.
River basin management approach could increase agricultural and hydropower productivity to improve Nepal’s economic status