Tibetan Plateau

The geographically defined highlands of Tibet and officially Qinghai- Tibet Plateau (in Chinese青藏高原, Pinyin Qīng - Zang Gaoyuan ), and High Asia, includes not only the entire habitat Tibetan- speaking peoples, the even smaller historical Tibet, or today's Autonomous Region Tibet ( AGT ) of the People 's Republic of China, but also it confining high mountains Himalayas, Kunlun Shan, Qilian Shan, etc.

After the plateau in the early Miocene was, it reached the present height before about eight million years ago. Over time, erosion and weather dug valleys and formed steep walls and cliffs.

The highlands, which is about 4000-5500 meters above sea level and about 2 million km ² is large is bounded on the north by the deserts of the Tarim Basin and Qaidam Basin, to the south and west by the mountains of the Himalayas, Karakoram and Pamir. Although the highest peak is 7010 meters high, the level is the highest plateau in the world. Here there are numerous salt lakes in the canyons as the Tilicho Lake, which lies on 4920 meters, making it one of the highest lakes in the world, further open plains, dense forests and deserts. These natural areas provide many animals - including endangered - protection, such as yaks, Saigaantilopen, Asiatic black bears, sheep and Kiang.

Accordingly to include the highlands of Tibet and the areas Ladakh, Zanskar, Lahaul and Spiti, North Sikkim and large parts of Arunachal Pradesh in northern India, as well as large parts of Bhutan and the north of Nepal. Within the People's Republic of China next to the Tibet Autonomous Region are also the entire province of Qinghai, southwest Gansu and border areas of the North West of the province, the western Sichuan and northwest Yunnan part of the highlands, while the Aksai Chin in the far west of the plateau in the Autonomous Region Xinjiang carries over to the Pamirs.

Climate change has been conducted annually since the mid- 1970s to a melting of the glaciers in the region of 130 km ². Forecasts assume that the glaciers could be reduced to half by 2090.

The desertification advances since then advanced. In many parts of the highlands affects already from a certain dryness to the sparse vegetation: once good grassland desertification threaten to fall prey which threatens in particular the livelihoods of the nomadic population.