The removal of the forests in the lower Himalayas which have mostly been replaced by farming and huge plantings of orchards individually small holdings. The reduction of the forests have changed the climate. The snowfall has lessened reducing the melt water and increasing the risk of fires.
It maybe a coincidence but something is happening; all the major snow fed rivers of India which originate from Himalayas and the Tibetan Plateau, including the Indus, Ganges (Ganga), Yamuna (the lifeline of Delhi), Brahmaputra and others such as the Sutlej have changed. It has been predicted that some of these major rivers could be dry within the next 50 years if the snow fall continues to reduce.
All the other rivers including the Kosi, the is 3rd largest in the Himalayas and the biggest tributary of the Ganges, are spring fed. Without the Oak forests, the springs dry up meaning a reduced water flow or none at all.
The HIMCON group is involved in the GPS mapping of all the springs near Almora feeding into the Kosi. They have found by planting trees, shrubs and grasses around these dried up springs, they rejuvenate and come back to life. We can with help, support this urgent, critical initiative.