Skip to main content

Climate change affecting Snowfall in Himalayas- Red Flag for Kharif 2024 - By Dr. B K Singh & Purnima Nair


Fig. 1: Map Indicating Statewise Storage Position (Source: CWC)

Over the past five years, climate change has altered ground water availability, affecting the agricultural sector in India. Melting of glaciers in the Himalayan region and reduced snowfall has been witnessed.

In Kharif season,(April to September) rainfall , plays a vital role in India's agricultural calendar and the success of Kharif crops depends heavily on monsoon. In absence of rainfall, ground water plays a major role in irrigation.

The impact of climate change, coupled with the complex and variable nature of El Nino events, has led to a concerning pattern of reduced snowfall, affecting water availability for agriculture.

Last monsoon was 8% deficient due to impact of El Nino. Western disturbances this year has been far and few. Low snowfall could spell serious shortage in ground water availability.

As of January 11, 2024, data from the Reservoir Storage bulletin reveals that the total live storage of the country stands at 145.342 BCM, significantly below the estimated 257.812 BCM. Weak western disturbances have resulted in the absence of heavy snowfall and rains in the Himalayan regions, further exacerbating the situation.

The current scenario, with limited snowfall in the Himalayas, indicates that glaciers may run out, resulting in insufficient water availability for the rivers, dams, and reservoirs. This, in turn, poses a direct threat to the cultivation of Kharif crops, particularly in states heavily dependent on ground water sources. States such as Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, and Odisha are particularly vulnerable to the impact of reduced ground water availability. The cultivation of essential crops like paddy, jute, sugarcane, maize, pulses etc. will be at risk, potentially leading to significant economic losses for farmers and the economy.

Fig. 2: Region Wise Storage Position (Source: CWC)

This above graph delves into the concerning decrease in water storage observed in the southern region. The data presented in Figure 2 highlights the stark contrast between the water storage levels in the last and current years. The data reveals a substantial reduction from 37.01 billion cubic metres (BCM) in the previous year to 20.59 BCM in the current year. This drastic decline raises alarms about the potential implications on water availability, agriculture, and overall sustainability in the region.

Farmers are advised to regularly monitor the weather patterns of their village via Fasal Salah App and take timely actions suiting to their crops. Farmers are also advised to be ready to diversify crops and adopt resilient varieties that require less water can help buffer against the uncertainties in water availability.


Popular posts from this blog

कृषि क्षेत्र मे महिलाओं का योगदान

  आज महिलाएं हर जगह हर क्षेत्र में अव्वल स्थान पर है चाहे वो घर का काम हो या बाहर का काम वह दोनों चीजों में सामंजस्य बैठा के आगे बढ़ रही है और हर चीज़ को अच्छे से संभाल रही है। वह पुरुषों के साथ कदम से कदम मिलाकर चल रही है ऐसा कोई क्षेत्र नहीं जहाँ उन्होंने अपना नाम रोशन न किया हो। बात की जाए कृषि क्षेत्र की , कृषि क्षेत्र में जितना योगदान पुरुषों का है उतना ही योगदान महिलाओं का भी है ।   भारत की लगभग 70 फीसदी आबादी ग्रामीण इलाकों में रहती है जिनके आय का जरिया खेती से ही निकलता है। घरेलू कार्य के साथ साथ वह खेत का सारा कार्य अच्छे से संभालती है। अनेक कार्य जैसे पौधों को रोपना , बीज लगाना फसलों की कटाई आदि कामों में वह निपुण हैं साथ ही साथ अन्य कार्य जैसे पशुपालन , मुर्गी पालन , मधुमक्खी पालन आदि को भी वे बड़ी बखूबी से निभाती हैं अन्य कार्य जैसे दूध घी एवं दही बनाना , आचार एवं चटनी , पापड़ आदि बनाने से वह आमदनी अंकित कमाती हैं और घर संभालती हैं। आज के समय में वह नई तकनीकों को सीखकर अच्छा पैसा और काम दोनों कमा रही हैं और अपना योगदान कृषि में बखूबी दे रही है । कृषि क्षेत्र में महिलाओ

Technology - Advising Farmers and Crop Yield Assesment

Food security in the light of climate change is a global imperative. In developing nations, the problem is exacerbated by variable weather, lack of reliable extension services to optimize yield and fair market access. In India, most farmers do not have access to weather advisory forecasts that are hyper local to their field and timely in nature. As all farming activities are heavily dependent on weather, decisions on application of fertilizers and pesticide, irrigation, and even plucking of fruits & vegetables and harvesting cannot be taken efficiently. In addition, significant crop losses, that are entirely preventable, accrue through adverse weather events. Crop advisory services, where available, are generic and not pegged to a farmer's seed variety, date of sowing, and growing conditions and hence do not dispense timely, actionable advice, directly relevant to a farmer. Likewise, market trends pertinent to their particular crop and location


India is poised to have a good monsoon this year. It can be seen for the NOAA graph of Fig. 1 below. El Nino conditions are changing to La Nina from May June July. Fig. 1: ENSO Probabilities by NOAA This year, the Southwest Monsoon is anticipated to arrive in extreme parts of South-SE Bay around the first week of May, gradually progressing northward. Seasonal Forecast as given by IRI in Fig. 2 below. Fig. 2: Seasonal Forecast by IRI Regional Outlook: The monsoon season may extend into early October this year. Western and Northwestern India: Above-normal to excess rainfall is possible over most parts of Western and Northwestern India, including Gujarat, Rajasthan, Punjab, Maharashtra, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, and Chhattisgarh. This increased Rains is likely to raise concerns for potential flooding, especially during the peak and late monsoon seasons. Rains are likely to be favorable to all Kharif Crops. Fig. 3: Rainfall forecast by IMD Southern and Southeastern India: While the