The Brahmaputra is a key river in the region that encompasses India, Bangladesh, the Hindu Kush Himalaya mountain range and the Tibetan Plateau, widely known as the Third Pole.
Around 2,900 kilometres long from its origins in the glaciers of Tibet, one of the world’s most earthquake prone regions, to its confluence with the Ganga in Bangladesh, the Brahmaputra drains most of the eastern Himalayas. In one 400 kilometre mountain stretch, the river drops more than 2,000 metres in altitude, as it takes what is known as the Great Bend. It carries a volume of water greater than the combined flow of the largest 20 rivers in Europe, second only to the Amazon and the Congo rivers, supporting the livelihoods of millions of people.
Today the river is threatened both by climate change and the race between India and China to build dams and other major infrastructure projects on its higher reaches. These plans could severely damage the river’s ecosystems and its capacity to sustain the livelihoods of the people who live along it, and have become a source of severe tension between India, China and Bangladesh.
In Brahmaputra: Towards Unity, independent experts from Bangladesh, China and India highlight the crisis on the Brahmaputra and challenge governments as well as academics and civil society to adopt a fresh approach to preserve the river for all its peoples.[Source] or [Source]