Bioengineering for landslide mitigation in Nepal

Landslides in deep weathered soils are a major concern for roads and other infrastructures in Nepal. The Risk group has developed a multi-disciplinary research program in the mid-hill areas (West and East of Kathmandu) for these last five years: slope stability and floods assessment, hazard and risk analysis, vulnerability and resilience of rural population, conflict of populations with hydroelectric programs. Since 2012, the group is involved in pilot studies on using bioengineering to increase the stability of some critical sites. This project is done with local engineers (S. Devkota) and several sites have been prepared, mostly with Vetiver plants. Karen Sudmeier, Ivanna Penna and Geoffroy Leibundgut are presently in the field to monitor these site by terrestrial laser scanning and to assess the potential of these methods (as well from a technical point of view than from a social one).

Nepal April 2014