The Assam government is concerned that 15 districts in the state are among 25 in the country identified as most vulnerable to climate change. State Minister for Science, Technology and Climate Change Keshab Mahanta said that out of these 15, based on survey reports from two top-tier institutes – IIT Guwahati and IIT Mandi, Karimganj tops the list.
Karimganj falls in the Barak Valley border region of the state. The district used to witness a large amount of rain each year, but recently, this has decreased. In fact, after two spells of monsoon flooding in Assam, Karimganj has received very little rain in the last two months.
The other two districts in the Barak Valley, Cachar and Hailakandi, also fall into the most vulnerable category.
Apart from these three districts, the 12 others include Goalpara, which comes second in the list, whereas Dhubri and Sonitpur are in the third and fourth places, respectively.
The others are Darang, Golaghat, Barpeta, Kokrajhar, Tinsukia, Baksa, Morigaon, Dibrugarh, and Sivsagar.
Silchar, the second most populous city in Assam and the seat of Cachar district, faced its worst flooding in June. But since mid-July, the rains have also decreased in Cachar, which has sent a red flag to environmentalists.
He said the government launched the Chief Minister’s Institutional Planting Program to enhance carbon stocks through planting native species and raise awareness among government officials on climate change mitigation.
“The uniqueness of the program is that the planted saplings have been geotagged to track their growth for three years. So far, 50,780 state government institutions have participated in the program and 2,43,451 saplings have been planted,” Mahanta said.
“Under the Chief Minister’s Climate Resilient Villages Fellowship Programme, 100 fellows will conduct a study in 100 villages to develop specific climate resilient models for these villages that could be adopted to develop as climate resilient villages,” Mahanta said.
Citing the Assam Climate Change Action Plan report, he said: “The temperature in Assam has seen a continuous rise over the past few years. Along with that, rainfall has decreased considerably. This has an adverse effect on rural households. totally dependent on agriculture.
The report further states that between 1951 and 2010, the temperature in the state increased by 0.59 degrees each year.
After monsoon floods hit many districts of Assam in May and June this year, a drought-like situation has now occurred in at least five districts of the state, the minister said.
The report further states that between 1951 and 2010, the temperature in the state increased by 0.59 degrees each year. After monsoon floods hit many districts of Assam in May and June this year, a drought-like situation has now occurred in at least five districts of the state, the minister said.
The Assam Climate Change Action Plan report has estimated a 75 per cent increase in the drought situation in the coming years. It also assessed that Assam may witness an increase of around 25 per cent in flooding.
In 2021, many districts in Assam were affected by drought due to a 21% decrease in rainfall in June and July, affecting agricultural production. Mahanta reported that the government is preparing an action plan to deal with the climate change situation in the state.
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