Association of Agrometeorologists

Assessment of impacts of climate change on rice and wheat in the Indo-Gangetic plains


In this paper, the climate change scenarios of A2 and B2 for 2070-2100 time scale (denoted as 2080) for several key locations of India and its impact on rice and wheat crops based on regional climate model (PRECIS) were described. The PRECIS projects an increase in temperature over most parts of India especially in the IGP (Indo-Gangetic Plains), the region that presently experiences relatively low temperatures. Extreme high temperature episodes and rainfall intensity days are projected to become more frequent and the monsoon rainfall is also projected to increase. Rabi (mid Nov-March) season is likely to experience higher increase in temperature which could impact and hence become threat to the crops which really require low temperature for their growth. Climatic variability is also projected to increase in both A2 and B2 scenarios. All these projected changes are likely to reduce the wheat and rice yields in Indo-Gangetic plains of India. It is likely that there will be more number of years with low yields occurs towards the end of the century. Such yield reductions in rice and wheat crops due to climate change are mediated through reduction in crop duration, grain number and grain filling duration. The yield loss will be more in A2 scenario compared to B2. These quantitative estimates still have uncertainties associated with them, largely due to uncertainties in climate change projections, future technology growth, availability of inputs such as water for irrigation, changes in crop management and genotype. These projections nevertheless provide a direction of likely change in crop productivity in future climate change scenarios.

PRECIS, Info Crop, Indo-Gangetic plain, crop model, wheat, rice