Establishment of a regional flood information system in the HKH-region (HKH-HYCOS) Date:09-02-2012


Recurrent riverine floods are a major water hazard, which often leads to disasters, affecting the vulnerable populations of the Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) region.The incidence and intensity of water-related hazards and disasters are expected to increase in the HKH region as a result of climate change. It is causing more frequent and damaging cycle of floods and droughts and adversely affecting the lives of millions. Non-structural flood management by provision of end-to-end flood forecasting and warning services is one of the cost effective means of reducing flood vulnerability.As most of the rivers in the HKH region are transboundary, flowing through two or more countries, effective flood management calls for meaningful co-operation of the riparian countries for exchanging real time hydrometeorological data to improve flood forecasts.

In this connection, the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in collaboration with the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and six partner countries Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal and Pakistan have initiated a project on establishment of a regional flood information system. The first phase of the project ended in December 2005 and since December 2009 the Government of Finland has supported the second phase of the project. The second phase of the project ends in December 2012.

Goal and purpose of the project

Theoverall objective of the project is to minimiseloss of lives and livelihoods by reducingflood vulnerability in the HKH region with specific reference to the Ganges-Brahmaputra Meghna and Indus river basins. TheProject’s purpose is to create timely exchange of flood data and information within and among participating countries through an established and agreed platform which is accessible and user friendly. In order to achieve this, the project is upgrading 28 stations in the participating countries by installing modern instruments that are capable of measuring and transmitting vital information in real time.


HKH-HYCOS in Nepal

Recognizing the problems of floods in the Koshi river basin, the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology (DHM) of Nepal has selected 9 stations from this basin for upgrading and transmitting real time hydrometeorological data.

The 9 stations will become part of the national real-time hydrometeorological network which is displaying real-time data from 39 rainfall and 18 hydrological stations placed by DHM all over Nepal. The real-time data obtained from these stations will be transmitted simultaneously to ICIMOD and the DHM. The DHM will display the real-time data on its national flood forecasting system available to the public user on


DHM has also shown its commitment to the regional HKH-HYCOS project by sharing all of its real-time data on the regional flood information system hosted by ICIMOD.


Key activities:

1.    Selection of hydrometeorological stations for upgrading based on a criteria

2.    Pre-installation of the hydrometeorlogical stations

3.    Civil works and installation of the hydrometeorological stations

4.    Upgrade of the national flood information system and interface with the regional flood information system.

5.    Capacity building and training at various levels from the observers and technicians to national level professionals.


For more information please contact:

Rocky Talchabhadel

Hydrologist Engineer, Department of Hydrology and Meteorology