Climate change threatens India's economy, food security: IPCC

Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:46am EDT

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NEW DELHI, March 31 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - India's high vulnerability and exposure to climate change will slow its economic growth, impact health and development, make poverty reduction more difficult and erode food security, a new report by scientists said on Monday.

The latest report from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) stresses the risks of global warming and tries to make a stronger case for governments to adopt policy on adaptation and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

"This is the most extensive piece of science done on climate adaptation up until now," Aromar Revi, one of the lead authors of the report, told a news conference. "The key issue as far as India is concerned is vulnerability and exposure."

The report predicts a rise in global temperatures of between 0.3 and 4.8 degrees Celsius (0.5 to 8.6 Fahrenheit) and a rise of up to 82 cm (32 inches) in sea levels by the late 21st century due to melting ice and expansion of water as it warms, threatening coastal cities from Shanghai to San Francisco.

Experts say India is likely to be hit hard by global warming. It is already one of the most disaster-prone nations in the world and many of its 1.2 billion people live in areas vulnerable to hazards such as floods, cyclones and droughts.

Freak weather patterns will not only affect agricultural output and food security, but will also lead to water shortages and trigger outbreaks of water and mosquito-borne diseases such as diarrhea and malaria in many developing nations.

"All aspects of food security are potentially affected by climate change including food access, utilisation of land, and price stability," said Revi, adding that studies showed wheat and rice yields were decreasing due to climatic changes.

The IPCC lead authors said India, like many other developing nations, is likely to suffer losses in all major sectors of the economy including energy, transport, farming and tourism.

For example, evidence suggests tourists will choose to spend their holidays at higher altitudes due to cooler temperatures or the sea level rises, hitting beach resorts.

India ranked as the most vulnerable of 51 countries in terms of beach tourism, while Cyprus is the least vulnerable in one study which was examined by the IPCC scientists.

Extreme weather may also harm infrastructure such as roads, ports and airports, impacting delivery of goods and services.

"The world has realised mitigation is absolutely critical and probably the most effective form of adaptation but adaptation processes have to be accelerated, especially in ... lower middle-income countries like India," said Revi.

(Editing by Gareth Jones)

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Comments (6)
Chickenlips wrote:
Climate change is happening but man is not the cause. Look at the Greenland 4000 year mapping that was recently completed and you will see this cycle of warming has happened dozens of times over the years. It’s like there are people in power that want us all to believe that we are the cause so they can justify the additional taxes we all will be forced to endure.

Mar 31, 2014 11:35am EDT  --  Report as abuse
smithers_j wrote:
A quote from this article (Note the last 5 words in upper case, emphasis mine):

“A new report by scientists…from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change…predicts a rise in global temperatures…and and a rise of up to 32 inches in sea levels BY THE LATE 21ST CENTURY.”

Seriously? How does this qualify as news? Everything up to the last few words is stuff everyone knew by now (as being generally predicted), but they usually refrained from predicting it 80 years out… But do they have any idea what they’re talking about even a year out? Considering that for the last 17 years a predicted rise in temperature never happened it’s completely lacking credulity to talk about what’s going to happen in 80 years!

A simple question: Do media outlets get paid to produce “news”?

Simple answer: Yes. And the more you produce the more you earn.

Mar 31, 2014 11:36am EDT  --  Report as abuse
BB777 wrote:
Top MIT Prof. (Ethos here does not get any greater)
Speaking in regards to Massachusetts’ new $50 million climate change
proposal, MIT Professor Richard Lindzen, a leading figure in the climate change movement, pointed out the absurdity of blaming every weather event on global warming and climate change.“The changes that have occurred due to global warning are too small to account for,” Lindzen told WBZ-TV. “It has nothing to do with global warming, it has to do with where we live.” Although supporting the theory of man-made global warming, Lindzen admitted that rhetoric from the political class and green movement has been nothing more than over-the-top “catastrophism.”“Even many of the people who are supportive of sounding the global warning alarm, back off from catastrophism,” Lindzen said. “It’s the politicians and
the green movement that like to portray catastrophe.”
Even more surprising, Lindzen goes on to point out the government’s obvious use of climate change alarmism to push greater state control, even warning over politicians’ use of “crony capitalism.”
“Global warming, climate change, all these things are just a dream come true
for politicians. The opportunities for taxation, for policies, for control, for crony capitalism are just immense, you can see their eyes bulge,” Lindzen said. Lindzen has frequently been attacked by climate alarmists for refusing to give into political pressures regarding climate The growing number of failed predictions from the global warming crowd has only cooled the public’s belief in recent years.

Mar 31, 2014 12:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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