July 16, 2015 — Climate change is inherently a global phenomenon, but changing weather patterns are more often felt at the regional and local level. And as the United Nations and others have reported, the impacts of global warming will disproportionately impact those living in developing countries with adaptation costs in the range of US$70 billion to US$100 billion per year by 2050.
The video above by Chintan Gohil, an India-based photographer and filmmaker, takes viewers to one such location: Ladakh, a region in the far north of India at the edge of the Himalayas where the impacts of a changing climate are already being felt.
As Padma Tashi, director of the NGO Rural Development and You explains in the video, “Climate change and disasters have been associated with Ladakh for a long time. Over the past 10 to 12 years, different corners of Ladakh have been affected. Somewhere there is extreme water shortage and somewhere extreme flooding. It snows when it shouldn’t. It doesn’t rain when it should. Everything in Ladakh’s climate has been turned upside down.”
In the face of these changes, non-governmental organizations and government officials in the region are working with local communities to improve disaster preparedness and enhance climate resilience — by building “artificial glaciers,” for example — while also educating students and farmers about the science of climate change. Through these efforts, Ladakh could become a model for other parts of the world.