Nepal-Japan Cooperation In Research on
Glaciers and Climates of the Nepal Himalaya
College of International Studies, Chubu University, Kasugai, Aichi, 487 Japan Abstract The Glaciological Expedition in Nepal (GEN) has been continued by Japanese scientists since 1973 with the cooperation of His Majesty's Government of Nepal. The main objectives of GEN are to clarify such characteristics of glaciers in the Himalayas as the relations between distribution and variation of glaciers and climatic conditions, and also to obtain basic data for water resources development. In Phase I (1973-1979), the role of the Asian summer monsoon in the glacier regimen in Nepal was intensively studied. In particular, continuous meteorological records at a station at 4420 m asl in Khumbu were obtained for three and a half years, in addition to the observations of glaciers. In Phase II (1981-1982), ice core studies and
hydrometeorological observations were carried out in Langtang Valley. Hydrometeorological data have been obtained almost continuously in Phase III (1985-1992). Through all phases, ground and aerial observations were carried out on the distribution and variation of glaciers in Nepal Himalaya. These results in the fields of glaciology, meteorology, hydrology and geomorphology have been published as about 140 papers.
Glaciological and meteorological observations in the Nepal Himalaya have been carried out as the "Glaciological Expedition in Nepal (GEN)" since 1973. The main part of the project was supported by a grant-in-aid for International Scientific Research Program from the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, Japanese Government (head investigator: Keiji Higuchi), with the kind cooperation of His Majesty's Government of Nepal.
GEN is also a contribution of Japan to snow and ice projects in the International Hydrological Decade (IHD: 1965-1974) and the International Hydrological Programme (IHP: 1975-), coordinated by the International Commission on Snow and Ice (ICSI).
Activities of GEN were initiated on the basis of experiences related to glaciological studies by Japanese scientific and mountaineering expeditions to 30 K. Higuchi
Table 1 Prehistory.
Hokkaido Univ. (HU)
Kyoto Univ. (KU)
Nagoya Univ. (NU)
Establishment of Data Center for Glacier Research in Japanese Society of Snow and Ice
Nepal during the period from 1963 to 1973 as shown in Table 1 and Fig. 1. Preparatory data collection on the glaciers in the Nepal Himalaya was made during the period from 1968 to 1973 mainly by a research group of the Water Research Institute, Nagoya University and the Disaster Prevention Research Institute, Kyoto University. On the basis of these activities, the Data Center for Glacier Research was established in the Japanese Society of Snow and Ice. The first GEN was dispatched by this Center.
Main objectives of GEN are to clarify the characteristics of Himalayan glaciers in comparison to glaciers of the world, with special attention to the relations between the distribution and variations of the glaciers and climatic «f-71
KHUMBU 7 3 - 7 8
( Chomo Lungaa )
Fig. 1 Observed areas and years in the Nepal Himalaya by Japanese glaciologists.
Nepal-Japan cooperation in glacier and climate research 31
conditions, especially during the summer monsoon season; to obtain basic data for the development of water resources in glacierized...