Climate Change and its Impact on Agriculture

Climate Change refers to all the variations in the patterns of the Climate that last longer thanthe individual weather phenomena and largely increased levels of Carbon Di-Oxide in theatmosphere produced by the use of Fossil Fuels. The Earth’s average temperature is increasingsince The Industrial Revolution. There is a broad word in the scientific community that thiswarming has been largely related to increases in atmospheric Green House Gases, particularlycarbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O).Agriculture is a science and process of producing food, feed, and fiber and art of cultivatingplants and livestock. Agriculture contributes 15.19% share in the GDP of the South AsianRegion. The share has steadily declined from 1960(42.30%) to 2018(15.19%) (The WorldBank, 2019) Even though the share is less in the GDPbut Agriculture is still one of the mainsources of Income in the South Asian countries especially in SAARC countries,Over 70% ofits population live in rural areas, the majority of whom make their living by depending on thenatural resources that surround them (land, freshwater, coastal fisheries). Temperatures arerising, leading to disruption in atmospheric patterns. Such disruptions affect the rainfallpatterns and over the course change the cropping seasons and disrupt the crop yields.

Agrarian activity is largely dependent upon the mercy of the weather. As far as Indian farmingis concerned it is still largely reliant on the monsoon. The followings phenomena of climatechange are the causes that may disturb the monsoon cycle and the average temperature: –

Erratic Rainfall – When a rainfall happened without season it will prompt a huge lossinfood grains. Climate change is influential enough to change the rainfall pattern of any region,that change is very much unpredictable.

Soil Health – Acid rain12 and other factors affect the nutrient level in the soil. Acid rain leaches aluminium content from the soil. Acidic fog can cause the same damage at high altitude.

Extreme Temperature – Slowdowns or even damage13 the crops. This problem is largelyspotted in northern and southern India. Research shows that this trend will continue andpredicted to be more critical than today.

Rising CO2 Level– Studies suggest that a high concentration of CO2 can affect crop yield.This can reduce the protein and nitrogen levels in alfalfa and soybean plants. Increased levelof CO2 fasts the weed growing process and insect proliferation.

A large portion of crops is degraded or never full-grown due to unmitigated climate change,and the small percentage of remaining yield got spoiled due to bad procurement channels. Inthe end, only an insignificant portion is left for consumption purposes. A variety of privateintermediaries at the local level are involved in the procurement process which violates theprice regulations policy at large, due to this a small farmer never got the right price for hiscrops. Agreeing to the law of supply & demand farmers must get a judiciousprice for the harvest, But the general economic loss is to be swallowed by farmers. This causesthe domino effect in the trade and industry cycle. To cover those losses and to prepare himselffor the next harvest It will become necessary for him to borrow money from agricultural banksor from peasants. From that money, he brought seeds, fertilizers, pay farm labourer’s, fuel usedby machinery, and repay the previous debts. This is an endless practice done by above 120million16 farmers. Paying the debt is an unfortunate deal for the farmers because of everyseason17 the volume yield is more or less the same. Simultaneously he wasn’t able to returnthe borrowings, due to this money supply got disordered and an inflation situation occurred,but majorly the personal and working life of a farmer get impeded.

From 2011 to 2018, Real agriculture and allied gross value added (GVA) grew by 2.9%.National agriculture policy suggests that the GVA growth must be 4% to attain an overalleconomic growth of 8%. Climate change events like drought, unprecedented rainfall, andextreme temperature disrupt the supply chain and eventually fueled inflation. To mitigate thiscountry must emphasize on sustainable development goals; In regions like South Asia and EastAfrican regions that are more vulnerable due to their agriculture dependence, strict laws mustbe enacted. 50% above the Indian population is engaged in agriculture; the majority of themwitnesses disguised unemployment. A modern structure is needed to track down the disguisedunemployment; For improved results, there is also a need to go back to regional crop planningand Agro-climatic zones model for the highest possible growth.

By Mr. Gaurav Bhardwaj

Assistant Professor

Department of Management Studies

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