The striking and harsh Himalayan landscape is home to some of the warmest people on Earth, whose Buddhist traditions remain very much central to daily life. As the world's last remaining Buddhist Kingdom, officials are cautious to limit tourism and its influence on the Bhutanese way of life in order to preserve the uniqueness of their cultural and natural heritage. Isolated from the world until as recently as 1974, it is a place unlike any other. Television was first introduced to Bhutan in 1999, and there is still not a single traffic light to be found in the entire country. The Bhutanese are also intensely environmentally aware, and it is decreed by law that no less than 65% of the country's land surface must be covered by protected forest areas (unsurprisingly, it is the only country on earth that is a 'carbon sink', meaning that it absorbs more greenhouse gases than it emits). But perhaps the clearest indication of Bhutan's singularity is the fact that instead of measuring the progress of the country in terms of Gross Domestic Product, the Bhutanese use Gross National Happiness, which takes into account more than mere economic factors to measure the success of the nation and the well-being of its people.