Drought-like situation has been prevailing in the Rajshahi region including its vast Barind tract for the last couple of days posing a serious threat to the living and livelihood condition of the people, particularly the poor and marginalised ones, reports news agency BSS.

Local meteorological office recorded a temperature of 41.2 degrees Celsius at 3:00pm on Friday saying the temperature has been rising continuously for the last couple of days.

This was the highest temperature recorded in Rajshahi in the last eight years, said Rahidul Islam, assistant observatory staff of Rajshahi meteorological office. Earlier, the equal temperature was recorded in Rajshahi on 25 April 2014.

Since the beginning of this year, only 42 millimeters of rainfall was recorded so far, said Rezwanul Haque, senior observatory staff of Rajshahi meteorological office.

Prolonged rainless condition has created a detrimental condition in overall public health in terms of drinking water as well as ecosystem and biodiversity

“We’ve not seen any significant rainfall in the region since January last because of the adverse impact of climate change,” said Professor Rezaur Rahman of the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences in Rajshahi University (RU).

He said that the prolonged rainless condition has created a detrimental condition in overall public health in terms of drinking water as well as ecosystem and biodiversity.

Professor Rahman further said global warming has been escalating gradually due to various reasons including carbon emission resulting in climate change. There is no way but to reduce global warming.

Massive afforestation can be the effective means of substantial and sustainable reduction of carbon emission, he added.

Besides, utmost importance should be given on transforming the existing irrigation system in the Barind area into surface water-based instead of the groundwater ones to mitigate the existing water-stressed condition. Promotion of less-water consuming crops can also be the best way in this regard.

Drought-like situation prevails in Rajshahi

Professor Bidhan Chandra Das of the Department of Zoology in RU mentioned that adverse impacts of climate change have triggered recurrence of natural calamities, posing a serious threat to the farming of summer fruits including mango and litchi and the living conditions of farmers in Rajshahi.

Volume of rainfall has reduced remarkably in the last couple of years which is detrimental to both summer and winter crops farming.

Currently, immature mangoes are falling off trees across the region due to prolonged drought frustrating the farmers and traders.

He mentioned that the ongoing climate change has severely affected farming and the biodiversity creating a real threat to food production. The developed countries should fulfill their commitment towards climate funding and ensure transparency in use of this fund.

He also said legitimate rights of the farmers and others concerned should be protected rightly for the sake of encouraging them towards boosting agricultural productions to meet up its gradually mounting demands.

Professor Bidhan Das said the region’s annual rainfall has never exceeded 1,400mm in seven years till 2018, which is 45 per cent less than the national average of 2,550mm.