India Vulnerable to Crop Loss, triggering Food Insecurity

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In the years to come, India will face food insecurity largely driven by extreme climatic conditions, according to latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report.

The report states that India will see a fall in the production of rice, Maize in the coming years, that could impact food security of the country. In India, rice production can decrease from 10% to 30% whereas maize production can decrease from 25% to 70% assuming a range of temperature increase from 1º to 4°C.

RIVERS

The IPCC also points out that the international transboundary river basins of Indus, Ganges and Sabarmati river basin could face severe water scarcity challenges with climate change acting as a stress multiplier by mid-21st Century.

It said that China will surpass the US in about 10 years to become the world’s largest oil consumer. However, by 2040s, India will replace the US to be the second largest consumer.

OTHER FINDINGS

The report states that fire risk will increase in Central Asia, Russia, China and India under a range of scenarios.

Another finding is that the Himalayan region, which is susceptible to floods and related hazards, will see more of the dangers.  Himalayan rivers are frequently hit by catastrophic floods caused by the failure of glacial lake. In Kedarnath, a flash flood was triggered by GLOF released from the Chorabari glacial lake in June 2013 which caused extensive flooding, erosion of riverbanks and damage to downstream villages and towns, as well as the loss of several thousand human lives in the state of Uttarakhand.

With respect to ground water, the report said that India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and China together account for more than 50% of the world‘s groundwater withdrawals. A study conducted in Shahpur and Maner district of Bihar in which drinking water sourced from groundwater of 388 households was tested, shows that 70 to 90 percent of the sampled household’s drinking water contained either arsenic or iron or both.

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