National Mission for Sustaining Himalayan Ecosystem (NMSHE)

National Mission for Sustaining Himalayan Ecosystem was launched in Jun 2010. It received formal approval from the Union Government in 2014. The Himalayan region has 51 million people who practice hill agriculture and remains vulnerable. The Himalayan ecosystem is vital to the ecological security of the Indian landmass and it is now vulnerable to the adverse impacts of climate changes. Hence it is imperative to protect the Himalayan ecosystem.

This topic would be of importance in the IAS Exam for both Prelims and Mains.


Primary Objective of National Mission for Sustaining Himalayan Ecosystem

  1. Assess the vulnerability of the Himalayan ecosystem in the short term and long term due to variations in climate and weather, through scientific study.
  2. Formulate policies to protect the fragile ecosystem based on the scientific study.
  3. States in the Himalayan region have to execute programmes in time bound manner in order to protect the Himalayan ecosystem.

Secondary Objective of National Mission for Sustaining Himalayan Ecosystem

  1. Build a knowledge network with the help of institutions involved in the study of Himalayan Ecosystem.
  2. Predict the future impacts that Himlayan regions would have to face with the help of sound research.
  3. Formulate appropriate strategies for the growth of the economy in the mountainous regions by assessing the ecological and socio-economic consequences of environmental change that is prevalent globally.
  4. Analyse the traditional knowledge and traditional health care systems in tackling climate change.
  5. Generate awareness amongst all stakeholders.
  6. Assist the states with the necessary information to protect the Himalayan ecosystem.

Issues Addressed by NMSHE

  1. Himalayan glaciers and associated hydrological consequences
  2. Prediction and management of natural hazards
  3. Biodiversity conservation and protection
  4. Wildlife conservation and protection
  5. Traditional knowledge societies and their livelihood
  6. Capacity in the regulation of science and critical peer evaluation to help governance issues related to sustenance of the Himalayan ecosystem.
  7. Assist in the restoration and rehabilitation process of Uttarakhand.

How many states are covered under this mission?

The mission covers 12 states.

Which are the states covered under this mission?

  1. Jammu and Kashmir
  2. Himachal Pradesh
  3. Uttarakhand
  4. Sikkim
  5. Arunachal Pradesh
  6. Nagaland
  7. Manipur
  8. Mizoram
  9. Tripura
  10. Meghalaya
  11. Assam
  12. West Bengal

Who implements NMSHE?

The Department of Science and Technology implements the NMSHE.

Since there is a wide range of objectives in this mission, the Government had appointed 6 task force institutions for the implementation of this mission.

Institution Task Force
Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (Department of Science and Technology) Natural and Geological Wealth
National Institute of Hydrology(NIH) – Ministry of Water Resources Water, Ice, Snow resources including glaciers
G.B Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development (GBPIHED) Forest Resources and Plant Biodiversity
Jawaharlal Nehru University Traditional Knowledge Systems
Indian Council of Agriculture Research(ICAR) – Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Himalayan Agriculture


Some of the Relevant Topics related to the above article are listed below.


The above details would help candidates prepare for UPSC 2020.

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