Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Find 36O C hot? Could get hotter

Find 36O C hot? Could get hotter

Bangalore: If you are reeling under the blazing sun with temperatures ruling at 36 degrees Celsius, be prepared for worse days ahead. At 36 degrees Celsius, the maximum temperature this April has been nearly three degrees above the general trend for this month. Pollution and global warming seem to be the local and global factors at work, contributing to a temperature rise.
As saplings get a customary splash of water for the Earth Day to be observed on Tuesday, the message can’t be lost: global warming is far too real to be ignored. Rising mercury also tells the tale of how the green is mercilessly slaughtered at our own peril.
Not surprisingly, scientists expect this summer to be among the hottest ever. According to the Director of the Meteorology Department, Muttuchami, the current temperatures have been recorded in earlier years as well. April 2006 recorded a high of 36.3 degrees Celsius, while the mercury touched 37 degrees in April 2007.
Prof. M B Raje Gowda, agricultural meteorologist at GKVK, says the mercury rise has been gradual and, perhaps, a result of various factors. Global warming seems to be playing a big role, he said. The last north-east monsoon did not bring the usual amount of rain. Soil moisture came down, leading to a rise in temperature, he explained.
“Incoming radiation is more than outgoing radiation from earth. Atmospheric pollutants, increasing by the day, are holding the heat in the temperature. This is causing a flux in temperature and it will continue till we have heavy rainfall, which usually occurs after May 15,’’ explained Raje Gowda. If the heat wave continues, scientists predict it could hamper agriculture production; there could be seasonal changes like advancement or delay in rainfall this year.
Karnataka’s average maximum temperature is 33.2 degrees Celsius, three degrees less than current temperatures, which could rise further. The most affected would be North Karnataka and coastal regions, he said. MIDSUMMER TALES
From 1961, almost every alternate year recorded 36O C during April 1998 and 2004 recorded 37O C
Expected rainfall after May 15 could bring some relief


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