India assesses climate change impacts

Friday 19th Nov 2010 by theWeather Club

As one of the world fastest growing economies and a future global superpower, India is often in the spotlight, accused of not placing a high enough priority on the climate change effects of its rapid industrial growth. However the country does appear to be keeping a close eye on the situation. The Indian Network for Climate Change Assessment (INCCA), has published a report detailing some of the issues the country could face as a result of rising temperatures.The report says that sectors like water, forestry, health and agriculture will be seriously affected due to the increase in temperatures of up to 2.2°C in another 20 years.

The report ‘Climate Change and India: a 4x4 assessment’ provides an assessment of the impact of climate change in the year 2030. Among its predictions are an increase of rain, snow and storms in areas such as the Himalayas, the Northeast parts of the country, and along several coastal regions. Other projections indicate that the frequency of cyclones is likely to decrease, but they will increase in intensity. On the agriculture front, the report says irrigated rice in all the regions is likely to gain in yields marginally due to warming, as irrigated rice tends to benefit from the CO2 fertilisation effect.

Science and technology minister Kapil Sibal, economist MS Swaminathan and environment minister Jairam Ramesh agreed that no other country in the world is as vulnerable to climate change as India. "I am glad that for the first time such a comprehensive assessment has been undertaken," Mr Sibal said. The INCCA was launched last year as a mechanism to engage and co-ordinate the country's institutions and  agencies already working in the area of climate change.