India is in dire need of climate-resilient farming. Discuss, and also identify the measures to achieve it.
Climate resilient agriculture refers to such crops and farming methods that are relatively more resilient to fluctuations in climate. This resilience can be in the form of a crop that is more heat resistant, disease-resistant, and that can bear water shortage, water excess, and can withstand a wide range of temperatures, etc.
Need for Climate Resilient Agriculture:
- Food security is heavily dependent on agriculture and in the current situation of climate change, agriculture is itself at risk.
- India depends heavily on the monsoon for irrigation purposes. Climate change is causing the monsoons to fluctuate, which can have great repercussions on agriculture.
- More than 1/3rd of cotton production in India is susceptible to climate change.
- Climate change is also causing instances of locust attacks and diseases by other pests like Bollworm, pink worm, etc.
Measures to achieve climate-resilient agriculture:
- Green revolution 2.0, focussing on crop diversification, increasing farm biodiversity, & controlling pests via natural methods, etc.
- Shift cultivation of water-intensive crops like rice to the east & northeast to tackle the issue of the declining water table in Punjab & Haryana.
- Organic farming, community farming, farm forestry, crop rotation, etc are the measures that can help to increase soil fertility while decreasing risk via diversification.
- The focus needs to shift towards such crops that require less water & fertilizer, etc like pulses, millets, legumes, etc.
Agriculture in India is suffering from various problems which are created over time by populist measures of governments. These measures have distorted the overall agricultural productivity. However, recent schemes like the National mission on pulses & oilseeds, weather forecasting, and farm inputs dissemination are steps in the right direction.