Silver Linings of Climate Change !
Yes, there are ‘some’ silver linings of climate change found out by us. Grossly Ten or Fifteen years back I used to see Summer Nor’wester a very regular phenomenon in West Bengal in the Bengali months of Vaisakha and Joisthya ( First two months in Bengali calender ). Summer Nor’wester in the West Bengal (State) of India is a Storm which appears from the North-Western horizons in the afternoon , generally in between 4.00 to 5.00 pm. Sometimes it would happen at even 1.00 pm and also after 5.00 pm. The storm generally would start off from deep dark clouds with intermittent lightnings and thunders. Dust whirlwind storm was its initial phase followed by rain, sometimes hailstorm.
The Nor’wester had been a regular phenomenon then. Just five decades back it was rather a welcome phenomenon that we would enjoy in many instances. For example, we would go out of our houses, along with our friends to pick up mangoes shedded out of moderate to medium storms. In case of higher severity of storms we used to come back to our houses or take shelter in common places when we could not make it to our houses from a longer distance.
During Nor’wester there had been a lot of lightnings laced with thunderstorms , but I had not heard so much casualties struck out of these as we see nowadays! I think this has a lot to do with the level of Nature’s degradation and pollution associated with rampant, ruthless industrialization, mechanisation and so-called modernisation.
The Nor’wester had not been quite regular but not so ‘dangerous’ as we find today. People used to make it a point to return home before the Nor’wester hours as it had been a regular phenomenon. Nowadays Nor’wester is not as regular. In some years it had been just about absent, but in most of the years it is irregular and devastating!
Most important is the fact that boundary lines of the seasons are becoming less distinct, overlapping. Rainy season is starting late for long two to four decades. It has become customary now to transplant paddy with underground irrigation water. Even after late start rainy season is interrupted with intermittent as well as prolonged drought. Transplanted paddy suffers from lack of water as it is dependent on irrigation water with scarce rainfall in between.