Drought analysis and management for Tamil Nadu: Science-stakeholder-policy linkage
R. GOWTHAM*, V. GEETHALAKSHMI, N. KUMAR, A. LAKSHMANAN, K. BHUVANESWARI, GA. DHEEBAKARAN and K. SENTHILRAJA
The complex and multi-dimensional nature of droughts in Tamil Nadu state and its impact on agricultural sector and farming community requires a thorough analysis for developing short and long–term adaptation and mitigation measures with institutional arrangement and policy support. In the present investigation, drought analysis was made for Tamil Nadu state using 148 years (1871 – 2018) monthly rainfall data obtained at district scale from India Meteorological Department (IMD) and Tamil Nadu Agricultural University by employing various drought indices. Larger co-efficient of variation (139 and 149 %) during the major growing seasons (Southwest and Northeast monsoon)evidenced highundependability of rainfall over Tamil Nadu. Drought Index (DI) analysis indicated a 51 per cent drought years in SWM and 48 per cent in NEM season, while Standardized Precipitation Index (SPI) exhibited 43 and 48 per cent of drought years in SWM and NEM respectively, indicating occurrence of drought once in every four years. More number of Consecutive Drought years (CDY) posed serious impacts on food production and livelihoods. Drought management framework as well as input for designing drought policy for Tamil Nadu.