Changing weather patterns
Kashmir has been witnessing an unprecedented weather patterns over the past several years now. This change in the weather patterns have led to various concerns among experts and the common masses here.
January this year did not witnessed any rain or snowfall, the first time since 1980, which raised concern about the availability of water during the ensuing summer. Even the experts suggested that farmers should avoid all those crops which need a higher amount of water for cultivation. Even paddy was a no no advice for the farmers this year as the availability of water for the crop was believed to be a major issue.
However, the subsequent months and later the autumn season this year proved quite opposite to what it used to be. November witnessed a severe downpour breaking records as this month the valley relieved more rainfall than what actually the valley was used to get.
The downpour has also meant that the winter chill has set in quite early and the night temperature has been touching minus during this part of the year, which is quite early. On Friday night the temperature touched -0.8 degrees Celsius in Srinagar.
The early snowfall does not augur well for Kashmir valley is a well known fact. Not only does the agricultural activities come to a standstill but the horticulture activity also suffers a setback. The early downpour also leads to loses as orchards get damaged due to November snowfall.
Snowfall during December and January — the 40-days of harshest winter period known as ‘ChillaiKalaan’, when the chances of rain and snowfall is the highest — is critical for agriculture and horticulture sectors in Kashmir Valley.
This is because, snow accumulated in higher reaches of the Valley melts during summer, feeding many rivers and streams which ultimately gets used for irrigation purposes. However, the early onset of winter may create an imbalance in this set norm which will in the long run cost us dearly.
The key sectors like agriculture, horticulture and power generation therefore, may witness quite a few pullbacks if the weather pattern holds its present status. While, the people here are not expecting major changes in the present weather patterns, we need to introspect as to what has gone wrong on the environmental front.
The alarm that has just been sounded regarding the changing weather patterns needs to be taken seriously as it concerns us all. We as a nation have to think collectively and without wasting any time have to think about the remedial measures that are needed to be taken. We have to act now, tomorrow may be too late.
We are too dependent on sectors like horticulture and if the weather pattern are any indication, the sector may witness tremendous stress in the coming years.