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Climate change is affecting the hydrological system of Northern India, which is based on two main phenomena: the monsoon precipitation in summer and the growth and melt of the snow and ice cover in the Himalaya, also called the "Water Tower of Asia". Increasing greenhouse gases are expected to change these phenomena and, in particular, will have a profound impact on snow cover, glaciers and its related hydrology and water resources availability. 

Himalaya glacier

Especially the perennial rivers in the north: Ganga, Indus and Brahmaputra, are susceptible to climate change as they originate from the Himalayas. Snow and glacier melt run-off form a great part of the rivers’ flow. 
Climate change is projected to have a short term and long term impact on the hydrological system. On the short term discharge of rivers in the north will increase due to the melting of snow and glaciers. On the long term the snow and glaciers will have melted for a great part and their contribution to the rivers’ flow will decrease.

The principal aim of the EU FP7 HighNoon project (which is a compound word derived from high (high on the top of the Himalayas) and from noon of Monsoon, referring to the western film High Noon) is to assess the impact of Himalayan glaciers retreat and possible changes of the Indian summer monsoon on the spatial and temporal distribution of water resources in Northern India and to provide recommendations for appropriate and efficient response strategies that strengthen the cause for adaptation to hydrological extreme events.  
Problems with the Monsoon


Archive with Project News

HighNoon Science and Policy Brief - Adaptation to Climate Change in the Ganges Basin, Northern India Science and Policy Brief with findings and recommendations for policy makers. 'Moors, E. J. and C. Siderius, 2012. Adaptation to Climate Change in the Ganges Basin, Northern India: A Science and Policy Brief. Alterra, Wageningen UR, Wageningen, the Netherlands, p48'.
HighNoon Secretary, Thursday 31 May 2012
Report of HighNoon Open Science and Policy Seminar Delhi, 4 April 2012 (D7.5) Meeting report of the HighNoon Open Science and Policy Seminar, which took place in Delhi on April 4, 2012.
HighNoon Secretary, Tuesday 15 May 2012
Changing monsoon patterns, snow and glacial melt, its impacts and adaptation options in northern India: Synthesis This paper gives a synthesis of this special issue on the sensitivity to climate change of the main bio-physical processes in the Hindukush–Karakoram–Himalayas. It also describes the impacts on the water resources with a special focus on the Ganges. Consequences of changes in water resources and possible adaptation measures for different sectors are discussed.
Eddy J. Moors, Markus Stoffel in Science of the Total Environment, Thursday 28 November 2013