An example of a favourable phase of EQUINOO, with clouds over the western equatorial Indian Ocean, but none over the eastern equatorial Indian Ocean, on May 24, 2014. (Image by Sulochana Gadgil / Naval Research Laboratory)

Newly found wind oscillation may keep drought at bay

A recently discovered meteorological phenomenon in the Indian Ocean, called EQUINOO, can fill in the gaps in the monsoon-El Niño link and explain why an El Niño year is not necessarily a drought year

The great Indian monsoon hit mainland India in early June and, as feared, hasn’t quite delivered. Meteorologists, farmers and economists, who have been waiting with trepidation for what is expected to be a below par rainfall year….Read more

Farmers preparing their fields for multi cropping in Madhya P:radesh (Image by Development Alternatives)

Farmers in Madhya Pradesh scale up efforts to fight climate change

Farmers in 23 villages in Datia district of Madhya Pradesh are quite aware of the risks that the changing climate is likely to bring; and in response have started adopting simple yet effective local solutions that stood them in good stead last winter

The first two months of 2014 witnessed unseasonal rains and devastating hailstorms in semi-arid regions of central India. Such weather extremes and unexpected events have increasingly…Read more

With water tanks at hand even if monsoon is not, Bangari Sisa, high on motivation, tends to the Lady's Finger saplings even as the sun has set in Gulel village. (Image by Manipadma Jena)

Erratic monsoon? No problem, say these subsistence farmers

While India is trying to deal with an erratic monsoon that is still sub-normal, some farmers in Odisha show how to adapt to it

Bangari Sisa, 40, cannot remember seeing so few monsoon clouds in early July over her village Gulel, which nestles amidst the high hills of Koraput district in India’s eastern state Odisha. “As a child I’ve touched clouds,” she says laughing, “they’d glide low and shower every so often this time of…Read more

A potential shift in China’s position toward emission caps will be tectonic. Picture shows the chimneys from a coal-burning power station in China. (Image by Mingjia Zhou)

A map and compass for climate talks

India needs both a principled approach and a strategic vision to take its negotiating position forward

An interesting recent public duel over India’s past approach to climate negotiations and tactics illustrates both the dissonance of Indian climate policy and the opportunities lost for a creative strategy. Former Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh wrote in The Hindu…Read more

Rainfall in the current South West Monsoon has been 40% below normal so far, according to Indian Meteorological Department. Image by Mahesh Basedia)

India cannot keep relying on monsoon

As India braces for the fallout of a sub-par monsoon, experts stress that Asia’s third largest economy needs innovative thinking to reduce its unhealthy dependence on the annual rain

Despite its globally-acknowledged prowess in the science and technology sectors, India breaks into a sweat each time the southwest monsoon – the subcontinent’s tenuous lifeline which showers its benediction between June and…Read more

Low carbon strategy report shows there is no free lunch for India (Image by Emma Jespersen)

Low carbon strategy report shows there is no free lunch for India

The report on low carbon strategies for inclusive growth shows there is no free lunch for India, according to an economics professor and IPCC author. The report, which is well over three years late, is a good first step, but there is a need to go beyond its simplistic analysis

In January 2010 India’s Planning Commission constituted a 26-person expert group headed by Kirit Parikh to prepare a report for low…Read more

The US-China climate change working group added new projects to its to-do list at last week's bilateral talks in Beijing (Image by The Danish Wind Industry Association)

China-US climate talks could end up being game-changing

US and China are using bilateral talks to push ahead with concrete climate cooperation and chip away at old divides over principles

US and Chinese leaders just wrapped up the sixth annual U.S.-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue. As in previous years, energy and climate cooperation was a key focus of the strategic track, which is headed up by US secretary of state John Kerry and Chinese state councilor Yang Jiechi…Read more

Wind turbine installed in the Sundarbans, West Bengal (Image by Joydeep Gupta)

Wind power becalmed in translation

The last few years have been challenging for the wind energy sector in India, especially with regard to policy issues. However, hope reigns despite confusion created by two versions in two languages, in the recent budget

India’s new Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced a slew of mega solar power projects in his recent budget. But when it came to wind energy, there was more confusion than certainty…Read more

A woman drying cattle dung for household fuel in West Bengal, India (Image by ILRI/Stevie Mann)

Millions die as most Indians still cook with wood and dung

Over two-thirds of Indians still burn wood and dung-based fuel for cooking, leading to a million deaths a year from indoor pollution

“The walls of my house are covered in black soot and my eyes sting when I cook,” says Pratibha Devi, 36, a resident of Mamura village in India’s northern state of Uttar Pradesh that has a small population of 302 people…Read more

Children in the village of Tebikenikora, on Kiribati’s main Tarawa atoll. Will they have to move one day as a result of climate change? (Image by UN Photo/EskinderDebeb)e

Should international refugee law accommodate those displaced by climate change?

Upto 250 million people may be displaced due to climate change by 2050. Will the world demonstrate a political will to acknowledge and protect climate refugees legally?

Can the United Nations help to protect people seeking safety abroad if their homes and jobs are destroyed by prolonged drought, rising sea levels or other climate change-related phenomena in the same way as if they were displaced by…Read more

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