Big crisis awaits the world. There was 33% deficiency in monsoon rains in India at the end of June this year, leaving many places reeling under the scorching sun while several cities faced water scarcity during the summer. But the sky opened up out of the blue and made up the deficit in just a matter of few weeks. There was no rainfall deficiency in the country by mid-August, according to the India Meteorological Department (IMD) report. Widespread floods were witnessed in several states like Gujarat, Kerala, Maharashtra, Assam and Karnataka after a delayed monsoon. Places that were facing huge rainfall deficiency suddenly recorded excess rainfall during a span of few days. Cloudburst, flash floods and extremely heavy rains wreaked havoc, killing people and damaging properties in many places.
Nagaland too has been witnessing unusual monsoon for a few years now with this year being of no exception. While the IMD report said the state received excess rainfall in 2019, a skewed pattern of monsoon rainfall was recorded besides uneven distribution among the 11 districts. During the period of June 1 and September 4, the state recorded -25% depreciation, receiving only 715.4 mm of actual rainfall from the normal 953.9 mm. There was rainfall deficiency in all the districts except Peren during this period. This is a matter of concern for the state as farmers heavily rely on monsoon for paddy transplantation and other crops. For an agrarian economy like Nagaland, extreme deviation in rainfall and insufficient water during plantation season can drastically affect agricultural output and economy of the state. This calls for an immediate need for coming up with an alternative to relieve the farming community besides taking up long-term measures to tackle the issue permanently.
Distribution of monsoon rains between different regions of the country cannot be even but receiving an entire season’s rain in a very short period of time is disturbing and baffling. Scientists fear that this unusual rainfall could be due to the changing global weather patterns. If this trend continues, the world will witness more natural calamities, more loss of life and eventually lead to scarcity of food too. It has already created a strange situation wherein people face water shortage despite excess rainfall. This is what climate change has done to the world today. This is the price human beings have to pay for their irresponsible ways and indifferent attitude towards the environment. But the worst is yet to come as global warming is causing constant rise in the temperatures every year, melting down the glaciers, increasing the sea level and causing extreme weather events. Experts and environmentalists have made it crystal clear that pragmatic measures should be taken up to avoid a possible catastrophe in the future.
For the moment, a mechanism like innovative rainwater harvesting system should be adopted to help farmers fight water shortage during crop plantation season. The government too should take up measures and projects to conserve water bodies, extensively plant trees and develop watershed areas. If we do not help ourselves, nobody will, because climate change is real.