This is a photo of a photo, taken at the Climate Plus Change exhibition in Kathmandu last year. Among the collection of poignant, climate-related photography, this exhibit showed a number of before and after pictures taken inside the Kathmandu Valley, documenting the developmental changes over a relatively short period of time.
Can you actually believe that this is the same scene across just 13 years? The only real clues are the shape of the background hills and a small building at the right-hand foreground of the picture. Truly unbelievable. I have been here two years and I know that the sprawl continues to grow, probably at the same rate, its just harder to see when it occurs incrementally around you every day. Its been four years since the lower picture was taken and the Swayambhu area now has literally no patches of green, other than the hill that overlooks it. All this sprawl is in unchecked, unplanned, and unsupported by any growth in roads or services. Its a sad reality.