Initiatives so far
The Nepali government provided some support for the building of gabion walls in 2010 and 2011. For the support given, local villagers built walls at the side of the village, which helped retaining the water for some time, but the embankments were too short and too low to hold against the currents when the river grew bigger in the evening.
After the recent flood, the district authorities have also allocated rice and money for buying kitchen utensils to the two families who lost their houses. However, seven families will have to build new houses this winter and more funding is needed.
What can be done?
Immediate actions should include securing sufficient food supplies and funding for rebuilding the homes of the affected families. It is also important to rebuild and strengthen the embankments before the next flood.
In order to estimate the risks for future outbursts of the lake and resulting impacts and expert team should be mobilized and sent up to the glacier. The expert team should produce a detailed technical report assessing the risk for further flooding and develop long term strategies to minimize the risks of a future disaster.
Long term mitigation strategies may involve controlled drainage of the lake, building of further gabion walls to protect also the cultivated land and possible ways of diverting the water away from the village. Constructing a deep canal, fortified by embankments, might be the most feasible solution.