Indian Academy of Science’s (IAS) journal Current Science published a report saying, agriculture in 115 districts across 15 states in India, is ‘highly vulnerable’ to climate change.
The first to analyze 38 meteorological, agricultural and social data across all of India's 572 rural districts, the study also creates a climate vulnerability index for agriculture. Scientists divided the vulnerability into five categories - Very high, high, moderate, low and very low.
The vulnerability index has already been used by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research to demonstrate climate-resilient agricultural practices in 121 districts that was found either ‘very high’ or ‘high’.
Co-author of the study, Alok K Sikka, who is also India's representative and principal researcher at New Delhi's International Water Management Institute said, “The study is possibly the most comprehensive yet and inadequate to inform local decision-making on climate change.”
The study confirms that most of the ‘very highly vulnerable’ districts come from India's western and peninsular regions. Rajasthan has 25 ‘highly vulnerable’ districts, the most in this category nationwide.
Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar also exhibit ‘very high’ and ‘high’ vulnerability.
Least vulnerable to climate change are districts along India's west coast, northern Andhra Pradesh and the northeastern states. Assam has the highest number of districts, 13, of ‘very low vulnerability’.