Chennai: Chennai and other districts in Tamil Nadu are witnessing changes in climate, but not adequate research is done to assess the impact and take remedial measures, admit ecologists and scientists into agricultural research.
“National Innovations on Climate Resilient Agriculture (NICRA), a network project of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), launched a few years ago has been consistently proving through its research projects on seasonal crops that climate change is affecting farmers and livestock owners, but the public are yet to understand the significance of global warming and changing weather patterns,” warned an eminent professor from the Aquatic Environment Management fisheries Research Station, Ponneri. He has been studying the carbon footprint and its effect on marine organisms and is suggesting the growth of algae to absorb the excess carbon being released in to atmosphere.
Sensitive ecological places like Pazhaverkadu and ghat areas of Chengalpet are undergoing climatic changes. Fish catch is affected due to migration and there is a behavioral change in plants and fishes due to the increasing temperature indices and there are plenty evidential papers on the same. The carbon footprint in Tamil Nadu has certainly increased due to food consumption habits and nothing much is done to absorb the carbon emission, the professor rued adding that his institute will soon take up projects studying climate change and its effect on local marine ecology.
“The quality of forests is dwindling along western ghats and the recent studies at Kalakad Mundanthurai tiger reserve in TN has shown that rain forests have changed in to semi evergreen forest and this is a visible example of climate change. But we are yet to start on the mitigation measures”, said Ms. K. Brinda, conservation scientist, Biodiversity Conservation Foundation.
The impact is such that even high grasslands that provide water to rivers are running dry and the current conservation policies are inadequate to fight quarries and projects that degrades environment.
Admitting that Tamil Nadu is lacking behind in attending to ecological issues, a senior professor based in Chennai who has been attending the state environment and wildlife board meetings for the past six months rued that as much as 40 projects seeking environment clearances came up before the state authorities on Wednesday, not a single project was opposed by the state administrators. “Almost all quarry and mining project proposals were forwarded to the national board of wildlife and ministry of environment seeking clearances, so what’s the point in taking about climate change”, the professor quipped, when DC reached out to him.