West Bengal's coastline suffers the worst erosion while Goa's remains stable
The recent National Centre for Coastal Research (NCCR), Chennai, data shows that 34 percent of India's coastline of 6,907.18 km is facing erosion, while 26 percent is accreting, and the remaining 40 percent is stable.
States with stable coastlines are Goa (67.1%), Maharashtra (64.6%), Daman and Diu (53.7%), Gujarat (53%) and Karnataka (50.1%) which are all on the West coast. In contrast, West Bengal, Puducherry, Kerala and Tamil Nadu are experiencing erosion of more than 40 percent, with West Bengal being the worst affected.
Accretion is highest along the Odisha coast at 51 percent followed by Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. A number of coastal protection measures have been undertaken by the government, including Integrated coastal zone management plan, prevention of soil erosion, shelterbelt plantation, mangrove plantation, etc. (News 18, The Hindu)
2022 to experience a normal monsoon, predicts IMD
Using climate models, the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has generated a long-range forecast for the upcoming southwest monsoon season, which brings rainfall across the country from June to September. According to the forecast, the monsoon in 2022 will likely be normal with 96-104 percent of India's long-period average (LPA). The seasonal precipitation is predicted to be 87 cm.
As per the spatial distribution for the four-month period, there is a possibility of normal to above-normal rainfall in parts of northern peninsular India, adjoining Central India, and along the Himalayan foothills and in some parts of Northwest India. In contrast, many parts of Northeast India, some parts of Northwest India, and some parts of the South Peninsula will be likely have below-average rainfall. (The Weather Channel)
Cost of destroying forests for Mekedatu project is estimated at Rs 8,160 crore: IISc
The Indian Institute of Science (IISc) has conducted the first-ever economic analysis of its kind on the destruction of forest resources due to the Mekedatu project.
It concluded that the submergence of 4,800 hectares of forest due to the project would cost Rs 8,160 crore. The Mekedatu project is a multipurpose (drinking and power) project, which involves building a balancing reservoir, near Kanakapura in Ramanagara district.
Net present value for the ecosystem assets of the forests to be submerged for Mekedatu has been calculated by factoring in a stream of income that will be earned in the future and discounting that income back to the current accounting period. The project is expected to impact about 3,000 hectares of forest land in Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary (CWS) which forms part of the elephant corridor connecting to Biligiri Ranganathaswamy Temple (BRT) Tiger Reserve. (News nine)
Heat waves cause fires in food-bowl states, destroying harvest-ready wheat
A combination of extreme temperatures and hot dry winds across northern Indian plains has led to unusual farm fires in the food bowl states-- Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Punjab and Haryana-- over the past two weeks. In these states, the fires have destroyed swathes of harvest-ready crops. As a preventive measure, the Punjab government has cut off electricity in high tension wires running through fields as a safety measure. Authorities in Rajasthan and Punjab have asked farmers to avoid smoking near fields or storing combustible materials.
Experts report that the extreme heatwave conditions and lack of moisture have made vegetation brittle and dry, which has made crops easily combustible. The northern part of the country will continue to experience severe heat waves in the coming days, according to the forecast. (Hindustan Times)
Fish deformities linked to microplastics in the Cauvery river: Study
The Indian Institute of Science (IISC) has published a study on the pollution at the Krishna Raja Sagara dam and its potential effects on fish. The study indicates that microplastics and chemicals containing cyclohexyl functional groups, commonly used in agriculture and pharmaceutical industries, are responsible for deformations in fish from the Cauvery River. There were two parts to the study, the first part was to analyse the physical and chemical parameters of the water samples, and the second part investigated whether pollutants in the water are affecting the fish.
Researchers found that microplastics and chemicals with the cyclohexyl group reduced dissolved oxygen in the water, which in turn triggered ROS (Reactive Oxygen Species) accumulation in animals like fish causing them to develop abnormalities. (The Hindu)
This is a roundup of important news published from April 5 - 18, 2022. Also read policy matters this fortnight.