Projects Implemented by Hydrology Division:

Installation of GLOF Early Warning System in the Punakha-Wangdeu Valley Component


The project Reducing Climate Change-Induced Risks and Vulnerabilities from Glacier Lake Outburst Flood in the Punakha-Wangdu and Chamkhar Valleys funded by UNDP-GEF under LDC funding.  The project has three components:
 a.Lowering the water level of thorthormi lake (DGM)
 b.Installation of GLOF Early Warning System (EWS) in Punakha-Wangdue Valley DHMS (erstwhile HMSD under DOE) and
 c.Strengthening of Disaster Management and Communities Awareness (DDM,MoHCA)

The 2nd Component installation of GLOF Early Warning was handed over to DoE as per the directive of 1st project Board Meeting (23 July 2009) to establish a comprehensive early warning system for the Punatsangchhu basin that not only cater the needs of the people in Punakha-Wangdue valley but also to hydropower and other infrastructures projects downstream by combining with flood warning component of DOE.

The purpose of the GLOF EWS is to provide a real time early warning system to notify the people of approaching floods so that lives may be saved and property damage minimized.


An amount of USD 670,966.00 was allocated for GLOF EWS component from GEF/UNDP/Austrian co-financing. Since the fund allocated for the project component was not sufficient to set up a comprehensive EWS network in the valley, an additional co-finance Nu. 20.00 million was secured from Punatsangchhu Hydropower Project Authority (PHPA-I and II).

3.Outcome and Outputs

Outcome 3: Reduced human and material losses in vulnerable communities in the Punakha-Wangdi Valley through GLOF early warnings.

The Outputs to be delivered under Outcome 3 are: Output 3.1, Output 3.2 and (part of DDM, but handed-over to DoE in 2nd project Board Meeting) and Output 3.5. Details outputs are given below.

a. Output 3.1 :Technical components for a GLOF early warning  system in the Punakha-Wangdue valley installed and operational
               3.1.1 Development of a plan for an early warning system that incorporates climate         change risk management needs;
               3.1.2 Tender and procure components (sensors, siren towers, and communications     equipment) for the Punakha-Wangdue valley GLOF early warning system;
               3.1.3 Survey appropriate sensor and siren tower locations in the Punakha-Wangdue     valley and draft plan for construction works;
               3.1.4 Install and test siren towers;
               3.1.4 Prepare contingency plans, including backup early warning system, operationalize     the GLOF EWS maintenance schedule and mechanism.

b.Output 3.2 :Institutional Arrangement in place to operate, test and maintain the GLOF EWS
              3.2.1 Train DoE/DDM and other members on the functioning, testing, and maintenance     of the EWS;
              3.2.2 Train EWS focal points;
              3.2.3 Develop and operationalize the GLOF EWS maintenance schedule and     mechanism.
c.Output 3.5 - Technical knowledge and lessons in the installation and operation of GLOF early warning system captured and documented for use in future projects     
              3.5.1 Conduct an evaluation of the GLOF early warning system, with focus on the     operational lessons learned and potential for replication;
              3.5.2 Draft a manual on GLOF early warning system and evacuation;
              3.5.3 Disseminate project results through publications;
              3.5.3 Develop replication plans for early warning system in the Chamkhar valley.


The duration of project was four years (2009-2012). However the project time was extended till December 2013.

5.Project Status

Installation of GLOF EWS system in the Punakha-Wangdue was completed by DHMS in 2011. The whole system was commissioned in September 2011 and system was operation thereafter.

With the balance fund allocated, the DHMS is expanding the GLOF EWS on Mochhu sub-basin.


Mr. Karma Dupchu, Project Manager, Hydrology Division, Department of Hydro-Met Services, MoEA, Email at or Tel no.: 009752323632 or
Mr. Sangay Tenzin, Dy. Project Manager, Flood Warning Section, Hydrology Division, Department of Hydro-Met Services, MoEA, E-mail at or Tel. No.: 00975 2321924