Tibetan government-in-exile president Lobsang Sangay on Sunday said at a time when climate change is gaining momentum, Tibet’s climate and land use policies should not be treated solely as ‘internal affairs’ of the Chinese government.

 

Addressing a panel discussion on Climate Change and Tibet at University College London’s Darwin Lecture Theatre, he implored upon the strategic importance of the Tibetan plateau as the largest repository of fresh water outside North and South Poles.

 

“Tibet is a water tower of Asia with 1.4 billion people in downstream countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar depending on Tibet’s waters.

 

It is increasingly recognized that Tibet’s climate and land use policies should not be treated solely as ‘internal affairs’ of the Chinese government as the Tibetan plateau influences climate and atmospheric changes not only in Asia but also as far away as East Africa and even Europe,” he added.

 

Sangay expressed alarm at the latest report which found that the melting of the Himalayan glaciers has doubled over the last 40 years.