Global warming due to GHGs and Ozone depletion may have following adverse consequences:
Faster snow melting and glacier depletion
Melting of glaciers will put close to half of world’s population under threat from flooding in short term and draughts, water and power shortages in long run. Siachin Glacier has retreated by around 1 km in past 25 years.
Sea Level Rise
Water levels will rise due to melting of glaciers and thermal expansion of waters. Over the last century, a rise of 10-25 cm has been recorded and it put in danger the low lying islands and areas. Small Island Developing States (SIDS) have expressed strong concerns over this phenomenon. In India also 6,500 km area is low lying and IPCC has identified India as one of the 27 most vulnerable countries to sea level rise. Coastal paddy fields, onshore exploration and coastal infrastructure is most vulnerable to the sea level rise. It is estimated that 12% of Bangladesh will submerge.
Predictions of water wars in Asia has already been made. Global warming is affecting the hydrological cycle and availability of fresh water. Variability in monsoons (which causes rains over 100 odd days only) can lead to sever water stresses. Ministry of Water Resources has already declared that nine states including Rajasthan, Gujarat, Haryana and Punjab are already facing major water deficit.
Impact on Mangroves and Wetlands
8% of our coastline is occupied by Mangroves. They are more prominent on eastern coast as it is wider and has many big rivers. They act as carbon sinks, barriers against soil erosion due to sea waves, help in mitigating tsunami waves and cyclones and provide a habitat to a large number of species. Climate change affect salt content and hence affecting flora and fauna also.
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