Climate Change; Adaptation and Mitigation in Himachal Pradesh (HP) The increase in global temperature has attributed to global warming, which became one of the major issues towards the end of 20th century. It is said to increase over the next hundred years and even greater increase is expected in Indian sub continent. Torrential rainfall and cloud outburst generate very high magnitude of flash floods in the mountain regions of the Himalayas during rainy season. During the last few years such uneven occurrences have occurred frequently in northern part of India particularly in some parts of Uttarakhand, Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh.
Himachal Pradesh is a mountainous state in Northern India situated in the western Himalayas. The elevation ranges from about 350 m to 7,000 m above the sea level. There is great variation in the climatic conditions and biodiversity due to great differences in elevation. It is said that the two changes that could take place in HP in next 20 years are, •
decline in the production of apples and
• decline in honey bee’s population
Apple is mainly produced in the hilly terrain ranging from 1600m to 2500m in six districts of HP i. e, Shimla, Kullu, kinnaur, Lahaul & Spiti, Mandi and Chamba. Evidences have shown that during the last twenty years snow fall has occurred in January or early February every year. However, the usual time for snowfall was in December prior to this (Climate of Shimla; page 6, para 3). This has shifted the winter season from December-February to January - March.
March is the month when pink buds followed by flowers appear in the apple plants and pollination commences. However, it has been proven that the low temperature minimizes the number of flowers to bloom. Hence the result is poor with less fruit production. This has declined the production of apples.
2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13, the volume of production apples during the last four years as follows:
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