Team Blitz India
NEW DELHI: Warning of a potential catastrophe in the Himalayas where the glaciers are melting at an alarming rate, UN chief Antonio Guterres said the ongoing annual climate talks here must respond to the needs of the developing nations, especially the vulnerable mountain countries that need urgent help.
Almost 240 million people depend on the glaciers and 10 major rivers, such as Indus, Ganga, and Brahmaputra, originating in the Himalayas. Another billion people living downstream of these rivers across eight countries, including India, are also dependent on the glacier-fed rivers.
Addressing a meeting with mountain countries at this year’s Conference of Parties (COP28), UN Secretary-General Guterres emphasised that nearly a third of Nepal’s ice had vanished in just over 30 years, and it was directly linked to greenhouse gas pollution that heats the planet.
Guterres, who visited Nepal, including the Everest region, in October last week, called for developed countries to clarify the delivery of $100 billion and produce a plan to double adaptation finance to $40 billion a year by 2025.
But those sums are dwarfed by the scale of what’s needed, he said and advocated for reform in International Financial Institutions (IFIs) and Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs) to better cater to the needs of developing countries like Nepal.