IMPHAL, May 10 - Temperature is projected to rise by over 1.7�C by the end of the 21st century in Manipur, the scientists of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) centres say.
Trend analysis of weather variables in Imphal under National Innovations on Climate Resilient Agriculture revealed that the mean annual maximum temperature (1954�2014) has been increasing by 0.1�C per decade, said the scientists in their research paper published in Current Science journal in 2018-end.
The 20-page report called �Climate resilient agriculture in Manipur: status and strategies for sustainable development� is the result of a year-long work by eleven ICAR scientists who have reviewed more than 40 sources of information.
Stating that as evident from the last 30 years� climate data analysis, precipitation rate in northern parts of Manipur is expected to increase, the scientists said. It is also projected that the extreme rainfall events (100 mm/day) will become more frequent while the southern districts are expected to experience higher temperatures than that of the northern districts. Similarly, the greenhouse gas emissions have also increased in Manipur from 1980 to 2005, the report said.
Interestingly, there are enormous gene pool of rice (more than 269 local varieties), maize, legumes, tuber crops, turmeric, ginger and chillies in Manipur which also houses more than 500 orchid varieties, 1200 species of medicinal plants, 50 species of fleshy fungi, 121 algae and a few moses, 200 plus fish species, 73 different types of birds, 31 endemic mammals, more than 53 species of bamboo, etc.
But high summer temperature can impair reproductive growth, yield and quality in different vegetables; while high winter temperature limits the cold hardiness and thus, hampers seed production and ultimately hit the small and marginal farmers.
Projecting the loss of bio-diversity and extinction of rare/threatened flora and fauna besides decline in crop yields by 10 per cent in 2030 in view of the said climate variability, the scientists estimated that food grain production and requirement of the State would be 77,105 tonnes and 79,323 tonnes respectively by 2050. Hence, there will be a deficit of 2,218 tonnes of food grain by 2050, they warned.
It may be mentioned that the total food grain production in Manipur during 2014-15 was 594.28 thousand tonnes from the cultivated area of 2,92,950 ha.
Otherwise, the total gross cropped area in the State is 3,50,290 ha, which account for 15.24 per cent of the total land area. About 65.93 per cent of the cultivated area is under rice cultivation.
Hence, there is an urgent need for devising climate proof plan and climate ready policy for climate compatible agricultural development in Manipur, the report said. Location-specific climate smart technology baskets need to be devised or introduced and should be demonstrated through participatory approach, for ensuring a climate resilient production system, and a climate resilient ecosystem.
Sustainable intensification of climate change action in Manipur requires introduction of climate ready varieties/species/breeds, organic nutrient management, increase in water availability especially during lean period and integrated farming system-based approach with special emphasis on carbon sequestration and waste management, it added.
Adaptation is considered a local phenomenon. Hence, there is an urgent need for seamless blending of traditional wisdom and modern scientific technologies to devise locally suitable adaptive strategies for agriculture.