Climate change and Archaeology in Bhutan

Video | 28 November 2011

Climate Change advocates say a glacial lake outburst nearly cost Bhutan one of its most stunning fortresses.

Transcript

Title: Climate change and Archaeology in Bhutan

Description: Climate Change advocates say a glacial lake outburst nearly cost Bhutan one of its most stunning fortresses.

VO: The massive fortress of Punakha Dzong – the religious and administrative center of Punakha district in western Bhutan – was nearly annihilated in 1994 when the two rivers surrounding the stronghold swelled.

The rivers’ rapid rise was caused by a glacial lake outburst in the Lunana region. The speedy rate of ice and snow melt, possibly brought about by global warming, caused lakes to fill to their banks, resulting in overflows – and then floods.

Environment experts say Bhutan, where 7 in 10 families depend on agriculture, faces a potential catastrophe from climate change.  

The government of Bhutan – with the assistance of the Asian Development Bank – is addressing the global warming threat, not only developing ways to prevent disasters brought about by climate change, but also tapping renewable sources of energy.

With assistance from ADB, Bhutan is tackling modern problems in contemporary ways, in order to save the ancient kingdom’s precious heritage – and its future.