National, Back Page

Drought-like situation prevails in Rajshahi

Published : 15 Apr 2022 11:55 PM | Updated : 16 Apr 2022 02:25 PM

Drought-like situation has been prevailing in the region including its vast Barind tract for the last couple of days posing a serious threat to the living and livelihood condition of the people, particularly the poor and marginalized ones.

Local Meteorological Office recorded a temperature of 41.2 degrees Celsius at 3 pm today saying the temperature has been rising continuously for the last couple of days.

Since the beginning of this year, only 42 millimeters of rainfall was recorded so far, said Rezwanul Haque, senior observatory staff of Rajshahi Meteorological Office.

"We've not seen any significant rainfall in the region since January last because of the adverse impact of climate change," said Professor Rezaur Rahman of the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences in Rajshahi University (RU).

He opined that the prolonged rainless condition has created a detrimental condition in overall public health in terms of drinking water as well asecosystem and biodiversity.

Illustrating his academic and research expertise on the issue, Prof Rahman said global warming has been escalating gradually due to various reasons including carbon emission resulting in climate change. There is no way but to reduce global warming.

Massive afforestation can be the effective means of substantial and sustainable reduction of carbon emission, he added.

Besides, utmost importance should be given on transforming the existing  irrigation system in the Barind area into surface water-based instead of the groundwater ones to mitigate the existing water-stressed condition. Promotion of less-water consuming crops can also be the best way in this regard. 

Prof Bidhan Chandra Das of the Department of Zoology in RU mentioned that adverse impacts of climate change have triggered recurrence of natural calamities, posing a serious threat to the farming of summer fruits including mango and litchi and the living conditions of farmers in Rajshahi.

Volume of rainfall has reduced remarkably in the last couple of years which is detrimental to both summer and winter crops farming. Currently, immature mangoes are falling off trees across the region due to prolonged drought frustrating the farmers and traders.

He mentioned that the ongoing climate change has severely affected farming and the biodiversity creating a real threat to food production. The developed countries should fulfill their commitment towards climate funding and ensure transparency in use of this fund.

He said legitimate rights of the farmers and others concerned should be protected rightly for the sake of encouraging them towards boosting  agricultural productions to meet up its gradually mounting demands.

Prof Bidhan Das said the region's annual rainfall has never exceeded 1,400mm in seven years till 2018, which is 45 percent less than the national average of 2,550mm.