Monday, March 24, 2008

Heavy summer rains sign of climate change

The Economic Times (India): The unusual summer rains that pounded Kerala last week, leaving a trail of misery could be a clear indication of climate change, according to experts here. While it was usual for the state to get an average of two cms rainfall in March, this year it has already touched 17 cm, the highest recorded in 25 years, according to the Meteorological office here.

Weather experts think that there could be more rains after a breather as the low-pressure in the Arabian sea is likely to persist for some more days. "This clearly is a sign of climate change and calls for detailed studies. So far, we have been clamouring that it is is round the corner. Now it is happening", Dr C K Rajan of the School of Marine Science of the Cochin University of Science and Technology, told PTI.

The persistence of the low-pressure was an indication of the ocean temperature rising, which has a direct bearing on cloud formation and precipitation. "The coastal areas could be vulnerable to even minute changes," he said. Analysis of recent data collected from the tropical belt showed that the ocean temperature in the region had been increasing, which could cause formation of low pressure areas and sustain them for a longer time, Dr Rajan said.

Photo of Linking Road in Mumbai by PlaneMad, Wikimedia Commons

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