Indian Monsoon 2019: If This Is Not Climate Change, What Is?

In Clean Facts, Environment, News, Sustainability

If there is any more evidence that deniers need about the existence of climate change, they should look at the 2019 southwest monsoon season in India.

The monsoon has played truant this year, with many areas now under floods, which were facing drought earlier. It began with a week’s delay after which it had a sluggish start with a decreased intensity up until the first week of July.

The delay may have been due to El Niño, which is the unusual warming of the equatorial Pacific Ocean and disruption of global wind patterns, affecting climatic conditions in tropical areas like Africa, sub-tropical areas like India as well as the extra-tropical areas like North America. 

It has a strong correlation with the southwest monsoon season in India but no direct cause and effect.

By June 18, the monsoon winds had not moved past Kerala and Karnataka. The slow progress of the monsoon winds was brought about by the development, propagation and dissipation of very severe Cyclone Vayu in the Arabian Sea over nine days from June 9 to June 17.

The formation of a cyclone during the monsoon season usually indicates warmer-than-usual sea surface temperatures.

After the extended period of lull, the rains suddenly changed character and heavy rains with isolated incidents of extremely heavy rainfall were recorded in the eastern and north eastern parts of the country.

These spells were intense and crowded over a few days which precipitated floods in many regions across the country killing hundreds of people, displacing millions and impacting their livelihoods.

The second spell of heavy rains began in the first week of August. Due to these, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa have suffered the fury of floods.

The usual nature of a monsoon with rains occurring frequently over an extended period in time can no longer be seen. This has pushed these areas to be either under drought or flood at any given point of time.

If this is not climate change, what is?

Reference- Down To Earth, India Meteorological Department (IMD), India Today, India Science Wire

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