Karnataka headed for warmer temperatures, less rain

Karnataka headed for warmer temperatures, less rain

present danger: Bidar, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Yadgir and Raichur districts of north interior Karnataka have borne the brunt with the temperature increasing by 0.6 degree Celsius. KPN

The action plan, prepared by the Bangalore Climate Change Initiative - Karnataka (BCCI-K), is perhaps the first comprehensive report on the issue of climate change in Karnataka. The report is being prepared following the Centre’s direction to effectively deal with the issue, in 2008. Several experts from prestigious institutions like IISc and ISEC are part of the Initiative.

Bidar, Bijapur, Gulbarga, Yadgir and Raichur districts of north interior Karnataka have borne the brunt with the temperature increasing by 0.6 degree celsius.

North Karnataka is expected to experience a warming above 2 degree celsius, while temperature in most parts of the State is expected increase between 1.8 and 2.2 degree C by 2030, the report stated.

A rise of 1.8 degree C is indicated for Dakshina Kannada, Udupi and Kodagu, while Mysore, Shimoga, Hassan, Chikkamagalur will be warmer up to 1.9 degree C.
Temperature will go up by 2.2 degree celsius in all other districts.

“Overall increase in the temperature leads to increase potential evapotranspiration. This leads to increased local convectional rains and thunder storms causing natural disasters,” the report warned.

“Hence there is a change in the rainfall pattern and amount of rainfall received during different months. Some parts are likely to receive south-west monsoon rains beyond July month, leading to variation in temperature”, the report says.

Monsoon rain in Bangalore, Raichur, Koppal, Bellary, Bijapur, Chamarajnagar, Gadag and Mandya districts are likely to be less by 12.5 per cent by 2035. Changes in temperature and rain will impact directly on the product of food grains, especially kharif crops. Most of the irrigated rice growing areas is projected to lose the yield up to 8.2 per cent, the report projected.

Rising temperature will lead to decline in river runoff and severe drought conditions are predicted in the Krishna river basin by 2050. The basin will witness a significant reduction in annual average precipitation (-6 per cent) and runoff  (-12 per cent). In the Cauvery basin, runoff will decrease by 2 per cent despite projected 2.7 per cent increase in rainfall.

Around 38 per cent of forest cover is projected to be impacted by climate change by 2030. Forests in Uttara Kannada, Chikmagalur and Shimoga are identified as vulnerable.
As per the report, Raichur ranks number one as far as demographic, social and occupational vulnerability index are concerned, Gulbarga tops the list in agriculture vulnerability and Bijapur is most vulnerable in climatic variability.

The report, however, said the projected impact can be mitigated by adopting various measures. It has recommended strategies the Government need to adopt in this regard. But the interim report has not been able to look at the economics of mitigation as it requires more complex analysis.

BCCI-K Chairman Prof B K Chandrashekar, who submitted the report to Chief Secretary S V Ranganath, told reporters that the final report will be submitted by September this year.

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