the world has recently witnessed some of the devastating faces of nature, many thought that its effect will come in limelight soon, but yeah! there are incidents happening in Antarctica, in the western countries and in INDIA.
before we move to the climate risk topic — let’s have a look at some definitions.
What is Global Warming:
in simple words; warming of Earth Atmosphere, because of excess amt of GreenHouse gases ( like – CO2, methane, chlorofluorocarbons) in our Atmosphere.
Predictions made back in the 1980s about Climate change are starting to come true
What is a Man-Made disaster:
These are the disaster which is influenced by Man, eg A flood is caused by nature But due to Human Activities like – excessive Deforestation & unstructured Urban planning the Damage caused by the flood is Multiplied.
Some eg man Made Disasters are- Bhopal gas Disaster, Punjab Agrarian crises, Chernobyl nuclear disaster, Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill
all these events could be mitigated if current measures were taken back in time. but there were ignored by the people & policymakers thus — worsening the present state.
Challenges to India:
Since India is one of the fastest developing nations in the world, with the world’s 2nd largest Population. Regions in India is well-diversified.
Back from the time after post Independence, India only concern was regarding-> Border protection, make Economy stability, Health & facilities, Infrastructure development, empowering Rural India…
Presently we have shown great achievements in these targets, but a new kind of Risk/threat is being faced by not only India but all over the world.
Indian States like – UK , Delhi , Punjab, TN & other Coastal region like Orrisa have become more prone to climate risks
Uttarakhand Climate Risks:
Uttarakhand is a State prone to flash floods & floods & It has experienced heavy floods in the last 40yrs.
recently in the early week of Feb 2021 encountered a flash flood.
Environmental experts point the melting of Glacier to Climate Change, the result of Global warming
; Increase in Earths temperature caused by the emission of Greenhouse gases (Carbon dioxide , nitrous oxide, methane…etc) impact the Himalayan region As the Glaciers covered in ice are prone to melting.
the flash flood was caused due to the Ice & water released into the Rishiganga river as it runs down mountainsides, it had done massive destruction & washed away at least two hydroelectric power projects.
a similar disaster was seen in the 2013 Glacial Lake Outburst Flood, which killed over 5.7k people.
Some Good steps that can be taken:
- Improvements in flood forecasting via Remote Sensing Satellites to study flood patterns.
- structural engineering solutions like – Flood Defense Structures are needed to be constructed to protect the river banks.
- Flood Plain Zoning or Regulating the land use in flood plains to restrict human activity near a flood plain, to mitigate the damage caused by flood
- since State of Uttarakhand is severely prone to floods, State must have Standard Operating Procedures(SOPs) for extreme events like Flash flood.
New Delhi Air pollution:
New Delhi being World’s most polluted capital in the world (according to IQAir, a Swiss group based on the concentration PM2.5)
the Lack of Active monitoring & Appropriate steps by authorities; Overpopulation; 9million Vehicles on the Street; stubble burning & unchecked emission from Coal Power Station causes Delhi to be World’s most polluted Capital 3rd in a Straight row.
Overall India’s raking as 3rd most polluted country after Bangladesh and Pakistan.
Initiative taken by Govt :
- 1600Km long Green Wall of Aravalli green ecological corridor – planting 135 Cr native trees in 10yrs to tackle Air pollution problem.
- the SC of India banned the sale of firecrackers in Delhi to reduce pollution.
- extremely polluting Badarpur Coal power plant was permanently shut down on October 2018, since it produces less than 8% of city electricity & produces upto 90% of the particulate matter in Air.
PUNJAB Agrarian Crises:
Currently Punjab problem of declining soil productivity, groundwater depletion, productivity crises, declining profits & dependent on paddy-Wheat monoculture
in the mid-1960s Green Revolution took off, At that time India was facing a food-crisis, struggling to buy food grains from abroad and depended on US aid.
At that time under the Intensive Agricultural Districts Programme (IADP) -> high yielding seeds, more productivity fertilisers, insecticides and pesticides along with assured prices for Wheat-paddy was introduced, & this results in Punjab high agriculture growth model. it helped India to come out of food crises &
also, contribute a huge % to the GDP of Punjab.
The Real problem started taking places
when instead of growing Multiple crop patterns,
because of huge Demand + Government Assured prices & free Electricity gave a push in growing more & more Wheat & paddy.
since they are required a large amount of water & are soil exhaustive;
this eventually results in overstressed Ground Water levels & Soil productivity in Punjab.
Currently Groundwater level in Punjab is depleting at an alarming rate & because they are Incentivised to produce Rice & Wheat ( which is not Punjab’s traditional crop cycle)
As Generation after Generation Landholding has become smaller, Cost of living has increased, farmers are forced to grow more Rice & Wheat for this they, Extract more ground Water using tubewells use more Chemicals fertilizers, take more loans. this results in Debt traps.
Due to global warming, the Changes in the Circulation of air & jet streams can cause Climate Change & thus may increase the chances of droughts.
The agronomist Suggested that there must be diversity of the cropping pattern &
An incentive of Rs 10k/acre can be given to farmers in Punjab for growing pulses & other crops to avert agrarian distress in the state.
Coastal Regions Water level problem:
Countries over the world whose boundaries touches Oceans are threatened by the increasing level of water.
Since the Countries (especially Developing countries) are struggling hard to keep the Earth temperature
below 2 degrees Celsius and to reach near 1.5 degrees (the pre-industrial levels) Under the 2015 Paris Climate Accord.
Coastal states are constantly threatened :
Coastal states like – Orrisa, Kerela, TN are constantly threatened by Climate Change as:
- rising sea level
- increase in frequency and intensity of storms
- since emission of CO2 in atmosphere is increasing , those are absorbed by oceans ; thus become more acidic, which impacts the Coastal & marine ecosystems & eventually the Marine related industry like fishery.
destruction faced by indian Coastal Areas :
- Cyclone ‘Nisarga‘ (Orrisa ): the damage caused by Cyclones are becoming more devastating, due to Global warming, sea surface temperatures are increasing which make cyclones more powerful.
- plus the Unplanned urban development & destruction of mangroves make Cyclone Nisaraga more intense
- 2015 TN flood: TN saw once in a Century flood as a result of heavy rainfall which burdened the Adyar river
- leading to Diasastorous floods in the city. which was 3 times of Average disastrous level.
- CAG held TN for it, Criticises the government’s handling of the Chennai floods. categorise it as a “man- made disaster”
- Flood management & response in Chennai & it’s suburban areas the Lack of Warning System of Flood, poor Disaster management in the City.
Initiative taken by Indian Govt to address Climate Change:
- Indian Government has set a target to reduce emission intensity of Gross Domestic Product by 20-25% by 2020 from the 2005 level
- Indian Government has set a target of generating renewable energy to 175 GW by 2022 capacity addition of 100GW Solar, 60GW Wind, 10GW Biomass and 5 GW Small Hydro Power.
- Since in India Greenhouse emission from Energy sector constituted 58%, in which Industry sector accounts for 22%, Agriculture sector -17% and Waste sector – 3% of the net CO2 emissions
- Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change has strict norms and standards for compliance by various categories of industries
- such as the Sugar Industry, Paint Industry, Pulp and Paper Industry, Fertilizer industry, Cement plants with Co-processing, Brick-kiln industry and Textile industry etc.
- with the objective of bringing energy efficiency, Control pollution, better solid waste management, water conservation and zero liquid discharge.
- Indian Government is also promote manufacturing & adoption of Electric Vehicles via :
- National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, FAME-I and II
- National Mission for Transformative Mobility and Battery Manufacturing,
as our Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said in Parliament ( March 15, 2021)
” Climate finance of USD 100 billion a year and green technologies for mitigation actions promised in 2009 under the Paris agreement are still “not on the table” for developing countries”
since India is a developing nation. The key going forward is to figure out how to achieve such a High target of mitigating Global warming without hurting the economy.
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