chapter  1
53 Pages

Uncertainty on a Himalayan Scale

WithM. Thompson, M. Warburton

A complex series of interactions between man and nature in the Himalayan region has many experts from various disciplines speculating about the probable course of events in the area. Analysis in terms of physical facts - the appropriate method of cis-science - has first to identify all the components of the Himalayan system and all the connections between those components. A great deal has been written about the accelerated ecological deterioration in the Himalayan region. Fuelwood consumption and supply, of course, is only one aspect of the Himalayan people-and-resources system and we should now move on to see whether the spectacular levels of uncertainty that surround it apply elsewhere in the system. There is great technical uncertainty and the quality of the data reflects this but, even more importantly, different people are approaching the situation with different perceptions and with different ambitions.