The Ev-K2-CNR Committee is an independent non-profit association, based in Italy, dedicated to technological and scientific research in mountain regions, with a particular focus on the Hindu Kush-Himalaya Karakorum, Italian Alps, Rwenzori mountain and Andes. Ev-K2-CNR maintains the Observer status to the UNEP Governing Council/Global Ministerial Environment Forum, it is included in the Observer Organizations in the UNFCCC framework and it is accredited to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) with Roster Status. Ev-K2-CNR is also a Task Lead in the Group on Earth Observation’s GEOSS 2012-2015 Work Plan.
Ev-K2-CNR is promoting the project SHARE – Stations at High Altitude for Research on the Environment aimed to contribute to the study of climate change and its impact in mountain regions, supplying unique information to international scientific community and decision-makers on sustainable development and adaptation strategies. In particular, this project provides information on atmospheric composition and climate, glaciology and hydrology, water resources, mammal and plant biodiversity, human health and indoor pollution.
In this framework, continuous measurements of aerosol, ozone and meteorological parameters, weekly samplings of particulate matter and grab air samples for the determination of halocarbons, were carried out at the GAW-WMO Station “Nepal Climate Observatory – Pyramid (NCO-P)”, the highest observatory of the UNEP-ABC monitoring program, located near the Ev-K2-CNR Pyramid Laboratory at 5,079 m a.s.l. In collaboration with UNEP, the installation of an ABC atmospheric station in Pakistani Karakorum is ongoing and the improvement of measurements in Mt. Rwenzori (Uganda) is also planned. Recently, an air quality monitoring station has been installed in the historical city of Multan, in the Pakistani region of Punjab. Data collected in the framework of the SHARE project are gathered in the portal SHARE GeoNetwork, a multidisciplinary catalogue which promotes the access to metadata, spatial data and geographic information on high altitude environments.
A research project to improve knowledge concerning indoor pollution effects on human health is ongoing in the population of high altitude villages in Khumbu Valley (Nepal) and actions to reduce the problems like improving the ventilation of local houses will be carried out in the near future. Another tangible action to reduce atmospheric pollution regards the installation of a waste disposal system, which meets CE safety standards, in the Sagarmatha National Park (Nepal). Ev-K2-CNR is also developing advanced technological systems for environmental monitoring in particular in remote environments, where the feasibility of the installation of permanent site will be extremely difficult.