Warmer winter to affect crop production, increase pollution
KATHMANDU, Dec 28: The country is likely to witness a substantial decline in winter crop production and an increase in pollution, mainly in urban areas, thanks to warmer winter and no rainfall even by the end of December.
According to weather experts, it usually rained two to three times by the end of December which kept agricultural production at normal level and also checked air pollution to some extent.
But as "western disturbance" has not reached Nepal, it is least likely to rain, particularly in the central region, even in the coming days.
According to Shrestha, western disturbance or the low pressure system originates over the Mediterranean Sea and moves eastwards causing rainfall in the Indian subcontinent, including Nepal.
“We had observed such winters in 2007 and before that in 1996,” said Rajendra Shrestha, senior meteorologist at the weather forecasting division of the department of hydrology.
While Shrestha did not like to include it among the reasons behind the warmer winter, another senior meteorologist Mani Ratna Shakya stated that global warming or climate change could be a factor responsible for pushing out normal winter rains. “But only a thorough study can establish whether global warming is the real cause,” Shakya said.
According to him, normally 3 to 4 winter disturbances passed through Nepal, but there are no signs of that this time around. “Due to the lack of rain, the weather is not as cold in Humla, Jumla or Mustang as it used to be. The dry spell is sure to reduce crop production,” he said.
Shakya, however, hoped that some parts of the country might receive rain in a week or two. “It might rain in the western hills, though I am less sure about the central region. Then it will drag the mercury down and the cold spell will last a bit longer affecting agricultural production.”