Roundup: Fieldwork in the Mustang Region, Cannabis Used for Ritual, and Sustainability in Mountain Ecosystems

Tracking Fieldwork in the Mustang Region of Nepal

From ICIMOD: “Rikha Samba Glacier is one of the seven glaciers where ICIMOD and its partners are carrying out long-term monitoring activities. A new automatic weather station (AWS) was installed on the glacier at an elevation of 5,800 masl during the field expedition from 24 September to 10 October 2018. As there is limited field data from the region, this high-altitude AWS will provide much needed data for climate change studies. Installing and maintaining a network of weather stations at higher altitudes is a challenge given the topography and remoteness of the field sites in the region.”

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Residue from Cannabis used for Ritual Activities Found in the Pamirs

From Science Advances: “This phytochemical analysis indicates that cannabis plants were burned in wooden braziers during mortuary ceremonies at the Jirzankal Cemetery (ca. 500 BCE) in the eastern Pamirs region. This suggests cannabis was smoked as part of ritual and/or religious activities in western China by at least 2500 years ago and that the cannabis plants produced high levels of psychoactive compounds.”

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Encouraging Sustainability in Mountain Ecosystems

From Earth’s Future: “Mountain social‐ecological systems (MtSES) are vital to humanity, providing ecosystem services to over half the planet’s human population. Despite their importance, there has been no global assessment of threats to MtSES, even as they face unprecedented challenges to their sustainability. With survey data from 57 MtSES sites worldwide, we test a conceptual model of the types and scales of stressors and ecosystem services in MtSES and explore their distinct configurations according to their primary economic orientation and land use.”

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