Abstract

The high-altitude desert landscape of Ladakh poses a number of obstacles and challenges to sustainable engineering, the development of natural resources, livelihood improvement and the protection of communities and infrastructure from natural hazards. Severe terrain, extremes of climate, floods, landslides and erosion are major factors to contend with and lessons can be learnt from the history of engineering management in the region. Geological and geohazard studies must be integral components of future development plans, combining remote sensing with field investigations. Engagement with local communities will provide valuable historical context concerning the behaviour of the landscape and will help define the land management approaches best suited to engineering intervention.

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