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21 glacial lakes out of 2,086 are at risk of outburst in Nepal


 |  Kathmandu

Birendra Lake, a glacial lake at Samagaun, Chumanubri Rural Municipality-1 in northern Gorkha has gradually started to return to its normal state. The lake was destabilized after a huge avalanche originating in the Mt Manaslu above it hit it on Sunday morning, leading to an overflow.

 "As a result of the overflow of the lake due to the avalanche, the excess water had flowed down into the Budhigandaki River. Now, the situation is normal and the lake is gradually returning to its previous condition," said Bhola Dahal, the Chief District Officer of Gorkha.

According to him, the overflow of the lake following the crashing of the avalanche into it did not cause any significant physical and human losses as there are no settlements near the lake. CDO Dahal informed that the falling of the avalanche in the lake from the mountain face has also stopped. "The increased water flow in the Budhigandaki River due to the overflowing of the lake has washed away a wooden bridge on the way to Samdo from Samagaun which is about half an hour's trek from the lake," said Dahal, the Chief District Officer, adding that except this there are no other humanitarian and physical damages due to the lake overflow. The avalanche has also stopped.

Dahal said that the security personnel have dug a deep trench from the lake and drained out the water. He insisted that the security personnel have been urged to remain alert for minimizing the possible risk from disasters.

A massive avalanche had fallen into Birendra Lake situated below Mt Manaslu on Sunday. Following the incident, the District Administration Office had alerted the people living near the Budhigandaki River to remain safe and to not to go near the river as the water flow in the Budhigandaki river increased after the occurrence of the avalanche. (RSS)

A study jointly carried out by the Integrated Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) has shown that a total of 21 glacial lakes are at risks of outburst.

“The study has shown that a total of 21 glacial lakes are at high-risk of burst,” said Dr Bimal Raj Regmi, the expert on climate change and disaster risk, “Necessary preparations are necessary to preempt the possible disasters in the future.”

 According to the study, there are a total of 2,086 glacial lakes in Nepal.



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