Lat/Long: 44° 56′ 39″ N 93° 5′ 35″ W
Weather Conditions: 45F (7C) Cloudy
Heading to the land of Everest!
We are excited to launch Earthducation Expedition 6: Nepal!
It’s hard to believe the Earthducation team has already completed five expeditions spanning five continents: Africa, Europe, Australia, South America, and North America! Now the team is preparing to travel to Asia, with a focus on a small landlocked country that is home to some of the world’s most majestic geographical wonders: Nepal. We will depart Minneapolis, MN, on April 27 and head to Kathmandu, traveling into the urban center and capital of Nepal before making our way west and north to visit several small mountain villages, and then on to the farm-strewn plains of southern Nepal.
During Expedition 6, we will interview a broad array of people as we investigate intersections between education and sustainability in Nepal. We’ll experience remote village life in Nangi and Okhareni, trekking on foot between the villages and spending time at the village schools learning about the unique educational challenges they face. We’ll learn about the innovative work being done by the Nepal Wireless Internet Project, a community initiative led by Mahabir Pun that has brought Internet access to more than 150 remote mountain villages and for which Mr. Pun was just inducted into the Internet Hall of Fame in Hong Kong.
The team will also discuss tourism and its impact on the mountain ecosystems as they travel through Pokhara, a tourist mecca and popular gateway to the high Himalayas. And we’ll showcase the farm-strewn southern region of Nepal as well, where the flat, near-sea-level topography offers a stark contrast to how most envision Nepal, with its towering mountains, including of course, the tallest in the world, Everest. Finally, we’ll meet with climate and environmental experts and organizations in Kathmandu, as we explore Nepal’s capital and biggest city. Kathmandu Valley has the highest population density in the country, and is home to about a twelfth of Nepal’s 27.5 million population.
The environmental focus of Earthducation 6: Nepal is glacial melt. The Himalayas have the largest concentration of glaciers outside the polar region, earning them the nickname the “Third Pole.” These glaciers are a freshwater reserve that provide the headwaters for almost all the major river systems in Asia, a lifeline for over 1.3 billion people.
Pressing sustainability topics pertinent to Nepal that will be investigated include deforestation, the impact of tourism on mountain ecosystems, educational innovations in remote villages, climate change, and the importance of the Himalayan glaciers to the environmental health of Asia. We will also highlight stories, contributions, and contemporary issues of some of the many ethnic communities within this diverse and ecologically rich land.
The Earthducation team has been working nonstop from the Learning Technologies Media Lab (LTML) at the University of Minnesota to prepare for expedition 6. From planning the team’s itinerary and establishing contacts abroad, to researching and writing about the issues, to gathering and prepping the gear and electronic equipment needed to support the team in the field, and setting up the expedition 6 website, the team has kept busy.
Once the expedition team is in Nepal, the basecamp team back at LTML will receive all of the updates that are sent from the field to be posted online, while the expedition team are out conducting interviews, capturing stunning footage of the natural environment, and talking with locals to learn about unique issues and innovations in each community they visit. The Earthducation team is ready for yet another expedition to gather a tapestry of stories to share with the world on education and sustainability! Are you with us?
Share Your Sustainability Story!
Become part of the Earthducation team on the Environetwork!
Our mission is for people ALL AROUND THE WORLD to share their sustainability stories, giving their perspective on how education and sustainability intersect in their lives. Where you live changes your experience.
Browse through the Environetwork to view current perspectives and stories, and then add your own. Together, we can explore how education can influence a healthier future for our planet.
Just for Educators
Earthducation provides a number of educational activities and resources you can use within your K12 classroom that complement the Earthducation project. We have shared lessons, activities, curricula, videos, websites, and other resources that address the topics of sustainability, climate change, glacial melt, and culture generally and specifically to Nepal. We encourage you to dig in!
Please note that these resources can be used at any time during the expedition. The learning and experiences are NOT limited to when the team is out in the field gathering interviews. Instead, we encourage engagement with the activities, media, and Environetwork at any time.