Climate change not sole cause, says Javadekar

A day after Union Earth Sciences Minister Harsh Vardhan blamed climate change for the unprecedented heat wave in May and the delay in the onset of the monsoon, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said here on Wednesday that climate change alone could not be cited as a cause for anomalous weather.

“Climate change is one of the factors, perhaps, but to say that heat waves and delayed monsoon are only because of it would be misguided,” he told The Hindu.

D.S. Pai, head of the Long Range Forecast Division at India Meteorological Department, Pune, said too much was being made of the delay in the monsoon as the variation of a week was normal. While a neat cause-effect link between climate change and freaky weather is debatable, Mr. Pai said, his own research had shown a spike in the occurrence of heat waves in the past decade in India.

A significant trend of a long-term increase in heat-wave days was observed in India during the analysis period (1961-2010), he says in a paper titled “Long-term climatology and trends of heat waves over India during the recent 50 years”.

Dr. Pai told The Hindu that the use of the term “unseasonal rain” for what was witnessed in March-April was wrong, although it was an “anomaly”. He said the warming of the ocean currents, referred to as El Nino, was common and no significant long-term variations were found in its occurrence.

Carbon sinks

The Centre is planning to launch of an urban forestry programme to be funded under the Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority (CAMPA) on World Environment Day, June 5, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said here on Wednesday. “The idea is to plant at least 4,000 trees in the next few months to help create more urban carbon sinks to tackle climate change,” Mr. Javadekar said.

The Union Environment and Forests Ministry has already piloted a Bill in Parliament to release nearly Rs. 35,000 crore under CAMPA to all States so they can invest in greening degraded forest areas to boost the Green India Mission.

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Printable version | Feb 29, 2020 8:55:33 AM |

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