Don’t Dam Every River, Warns Nepal’s ‘River Man’

Megh Ale is known as the "River Man" in Nepal, one of the world's richest countries in water resources. However, the country which has 3/4 of its land area in the Himalayas may not have a river left without a dam within the next two decades, Ale warns.

Elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2007, Ale is a river guide in Kathmandu and the founder and president of the non-profit Nepal River Conservation Trust. In this video, Ale shares the story of Nepal's rivers, as he walks along the banks of the River Bagmati in Kathmandu, which he describes as the country's “holiest and the filthiest" river, and raises concerns about another river, Karnali, the longest and the only “most pristine Himalayan river" left in the country. Karnali may not remain free flowing for long, as a private engineering firm in the neighboring energy-hungry India seeks to build a dam on it for hydropower.