Monday, December 24, 2007

Greener areas in city feel the chill more
Amit S Upadhye | TNN

Bangalore: When parts of Bangalore experienced a minimum temperature of 12.60 C recently, the GKVK and Hebbal areas were shivering at 8.40 C.
Varying temperatures in different cities is natural, but differences across areas in the same city is not all that common. Travel from the thickly urbanized areas of central Bangalore towards Hebbal, IISc or the ring roads, and you will notice a marked variation in the temperature. Shrinking tree cover, concretization and vast plain lands are some of the reasons for these changes.
Scientifically, the presence of vegetation is the key reason for variation in the temperature. Sadly, such vegetation is shrinking in Bangalore.
“Apart from helping the temperature go down, the trees act as filters, cutting dust down by almost 60%. This apart, the congregation of tree cover in a specific area absorbs sound and carbon gases, thus creating a healthy environment around them,’’ said former IFS officer S Gopal Rao Neginhal. Neginhal was instrumental in mass tree-planting in Bangalore in the late 1970s.
Weathermen attribute the dip in temperature in vegetated pockets to less radiation emission.
“In urban areas, most of the radiation is reflected by the roads, buildings and other structures. In the vegetated areas, the energy that is received by the sun is absorbed by the vegetation for photosynthesis, making it cooler,’’ explained M B Raje Gowda, from the department of agro-meteorology, GKVK.
Spread across 1,400 acres of lush green cover, GKVK records the lowest minimum temperature every year. A fortnight ago, the automatic weather station in GKVK campus recorded 8.40 C whereas the city was at 12.60 C.
In the early 1980s, the same place recorded a temperature of 7.60 C, possibly the lowest minimum temperature recorded in Bangalore so far. In the ’80s, the areas towards Hebbal were underdeveloped and had vast stretches of farmland with several water bodies. Cut to the present, GKVK is still one of the wettest areas, though the minimum temperature has gone up due to the urban sprawl. But the minimum temperature continues to be at least four degrees less than that in the city.
From the pages of history
For centuries, Bangalore’s weather has always been pleasant Former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who spent his youth in Bangalore, has spoken highly of the salubrious climate and flora and fauna of Bangalore in his biography. Around his bungalow on South Parade (present MG Road), he had collected about 45 butterfly species, which says a lot about the vegetation The famous artist-couple Roerich and Devika Rani chose to shift from Naggar in Kulu Valley to Bangalore, primarily because of the weather
Air-conditioned areas of Bangalore
Gandadha Kote Forest Guest House, adjacent to Sankey Tank Indian Institute of Science Bangalore University Cubbon Park Lalbagh Bangalore Golf Course Bannerghatta Road, after Gottigere Lake Tataguni Estate on Kanakapura Road GKVK campus on Bellary Road Jalahalli Airforce area Ulsoor Lake surroundings


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