For the very first time, India and China will jointly survey up to the sources of the Brahmaputra and Sutlej, which is the largest water reservoir in the world outside the Polar region, and collect data that could be used for modeling climatic changes over glaciers. The waters from this region serve close a billion people in India and China. The Indian Mountaineering Foundation (IMF) and Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) will be responsible for data collection.
Traditionally, India has major concerns over Chinese usage and plans for the Brahmaputra that originates in Tibet, currently under Chinese occupation and this resolve to jointly survey the area is a very good thing for bilateral relations slowly being resuscitated to life. Further, because of greenhouse gasses and aerosol emissions, environmentalists who have studied and discovered monsoon oscillations have estimated 30 to 40 years of life to these glaciers. They say that these perennial rivers will become seasonal and nations depending on them as water source will have to think of future management of water.
The last known and recorded exploration to the sources of the two rivers was completed by British explorer Sir Young Husband. The current expedition is planned June-July next year and the duration of the study is expected to last four to five years.