Greenpeace and the World Heritage Centre’s revelation that Nepal Himalayas, since 1970s, have warmed about one degree Celsius — almost twice the global average — affecting hundreds of glaciers and glacial lakes cannot be dismissed lightly. The rise in temperature has resulted in the retreat of 67 per cent of Himalayan glaciers, posing risk of outbursts and in the process, wreaking grave economic and environmental havoc. Therefore, the listing of the Everest and the Sagarmatha National Park in the ‘In Danger’ list merits serious attention if these sites are to be protected from further damage.

National and international experts, after conducting a study on Nepal’s glacial lakes, should be called upon to come up with suggestions on damage control and management thereafter. On its part the government needs to create awareness on the harmful impact of degradation in natural resources such as deforestation on the one hand and the manifold advantages of preserving the country’s unique biodiversity on the other. Both industrial and developing nations, by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, need to act more responsibly. Forcing the Third World countries in particular to suffer the negative consequences is unfair. Lastly, the industrialised nations like the US, which have thus far refused to respond to the international outcry against pollution should ungrudgingly embrace the Kyoto Protocol and cut down substantially on release of greenhouse gases so that the planet earth becomes, for all, a healthier and safer place to live in.