There are a number of environmental issues in Bhutan. Among Bhutan’s most pressing issues are traditional firewood collection, crop and flock protection, and waste disposal, as well as modern concerns such as industrial pollution, wildlife conservation, and climate change that threatens Bhutan’s population and biodiversity. Land and water use have also become matters of environmental concern in both rural and urban settings. In addition to these general issues, others such as landfill availability and air and noise pollution are particularly prevalent in relatively urbanized and industrialized areas of Bhutan. In many cases, the least financially and politically empowered find themselves the most affected by environmental issues.
Through 2011, Bhutan experienced accelerated economic activities pressured natural resources such as land, air, and water. Development activities increased urbanization, industrialization, mining and quarrying, agriculture, and solid waste management projects. Land degradation, biodiversity and habitat loss, high fuel-wood consumption, and human-wildlife conflicts are some of Bhutan’s environmental challenges.Notwithstanding these problems, Bhutan remains overall carbon-neutral, and a net sink for greenhouse gases.
Within the Bhutanese government, the independent National Environment Commission (NEC) and Bhutan Trust Fund, as well as the executive Ministries of Health (for chemical and radioactive waste), Economic Affairs, and Agriculture and Forests (Department of Forestry Services) are tasked with addressing environmental issues. Waste disposal issues often fall to local governments, Bhutan’s dzongkhags and thromdes. Non-governmental agencies active in addressing environmental issues in Bhutan are the Royal Society for the Protection of Nature (RSPN), the only domestic environmental NGO, and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). More about Maldives