Agricultural residue burning is producing large amounts of carbon dioxide. Indian farmers burnt over 87 million tonnes of agriculture residue in 2020.
NEW DELHI: Greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural residue burning across India have increased at alarming levels. Total greenhouse gas increased by 75 per cent in the past decade due to agricultural residue burning, according to a study. Punjab tops in this, followed by Madhya Pradesh. Greenhouse gases (GHGs) are gases in the earth’s atmosphere that trap heat causing warming of the planet. Excessive rise in GHGs causes an abnormal increase in temperatures, resulting in extreme weather events across the globe. Major heat-trapping gases include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and water vapour. Agricultural residue burning is producing large amounts of carbon dioxide.
Indian farmers burnt over 87 million tonnes of agriculture residue in 2020, which is equal to the entire agricultural waste production of neighbouring countries. A new study published by the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Bhopal (IISER), in collaboration with international non-profit CIMMYT and the University of Michigan, shows that Punjab was the highest emitter, with 27 per cent of its cultivated area burned in 2020.
Madhya Pradesh is at a close second. Moreover, this study develops satellite technology to accurately estimate greenhouse gas emissions on a massive scale and offers insights into planning and managing agri-residue burning. Researchers develop ground-breaking satellite-based technology that provides insights into greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of stems, leaves, and other residues from harvested crops in India.
The study demonstrates how spectral data — light and other electromagnetic radiation — collected by space-based instruments can accurately estimate greenhouse gas emissions on a massive scale. Cheaper disposal The success of India’s Green Revolution led to a remarkable increase in food production, intensifying agricultural production, and as a result, large quantities of byproducts as well. Farmers adopted the cheaper and more efficient method of burning them, posing serious environmental concerns. ALSO READ | G20 Declaration fails to send strong message for action against fossil fuels: Climate experts (THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)