Environmental resource conflict – or the potential for it – is never far away in the Himalayas.
In the west of the region, arguments between Pakistan and India over vital water resources in areas bordering the two countries continue. In the east tensions are rising as India expresses concerns about a spate of planned dam-building projects by China on rivers flowing into Indian territory, particularly on the mighty Brahmaputra. Meanwhile Nepal and the north Indian state of Bihar accuse each other of mismanaging water resources that straddle the border.
Regional cooperation is limited and, in many areas, non-existent. In some countries data on vital environmental factors, such as river flows and management, falls into the category of national security and is closely guarded.