The Reality Of Climate Crisis - Eastern Mirror
Monday, April 15, 2024

The Reality of Climate Crisis

By The Editorial Team Updated: Aug 31, 2023 12:26 am

India is already reeling under the El Nino effect as is evidenced by the fact that this August has been the driest since 1901, the year the country began recording scientific data related to temperature, annual rainfall, etc. With barely a day to the end of the month, the rain deficit in the month of August stands at 33 per cent, beating the earlier record of 25 percent deficit rainfall during the same month in 2005. Although the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) is hopeful that rainfall will be normal in September, it is uncertain whether it will be enough to make up for the deficit caused by more than 20 days of dry spell in the midst of monsoon season. Such a scenario is highly alarming as the deficit in annual rainfall may have far reaching consequences, especially on the country’s economy. If the month of September fails to considerably bring down the deficit, India in all probability will face a drought-like situation. Already, the sowing of Kharif crops has been hit considerably due to shortage of rain. As the sowing of pulses has gone down by over 10 per cent, prices of pulses have started going up in the market, a rise that may keep food inflation above comfort levels. Moreover, lack of rainfall in between June and September, may also affect the rainfall forecast in production of Rabi crop too as prolonged dry spell will mean that there will not be enough moisture in the soil, needed for healthy growth of seeds, which will hamper wheat production. So, the overall situation in both the agriculture and economic sectors look grim.

Scientists have been warning of the El Nino effect on the Indian monsoon this year. The effect is causing waters in the Pacific near South America to get warmer which in turn weakened monsoon air and is causing dry spell in India. The said phenomenon occurs every two to seven years’. So to minimise the effect of El Nino, major supply-side initiatives are required to prevent the prices of food grains from rising further. Moreover, fresh efforts are needed to safeguard the interests of farmers as they will be worst affected in a drought-like situation. An important task is to ensure that potable water is made available for the people to quench their thirst. Water levels at the 146 major water reservoirs have already started receding. The country needs to be prepared to face any eventuality. Amidst such gloom, IMD had predicted that monsoon will occur in early September as a cyclonic cycle may develop in North Bay of Bengal, which will create a low pressure system and cause rainfall. But, the question here is whether the amount of rainfall will be sufficient to keep the Indian economy and agriculture in good shape. If the rainfall is insufficient, the country may have to go though one of its toughest periods until the arrival of the next monsoon. The earth’s climate is fast changing and we must work together to fight the climate crisis.

By The Editorial Team Updated: Aug 31, 2023 12:26:07 am
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