Tropical storms, cyclones and other such natural adversities mainly caused due to warming of air above the sea and it’s rising into the atmosphere to form low-pressure areas, have massive ramifications on the affected civilization, but somehow we forget to look at other prospects which might have some involvement in the creation of such catastrophic events that cause so much damage.
One of the big reasons for climate change, rising sea level, coastal flooding across the globe, too has a say in the creation of the devastating cyclones. Yes, we are talking about Global Warming.
The phenomenon of Global Warming has increased warming of the upper troposphere relative to the surface. The increased vertical wind shear are detrimental factors for cyclone development and intensification.
Tropical storms such as cyclones are powered by evaporation of seawater. More than 30 years ago, a quantity called potential intensity was invented that would set an upper bound on cyclone wind speeds, to tame the storm whenever needed. In general, as the climate warms, this speed limit goes up, permitting stronger storms that weren’t possible in the past. Nevertheless, observational data support the expectation from models that the strongest storms are getting stronger. A report suggests that from the year 1979 onwards (as this is the period covered by geostationary satellite and no cyclones went unobserved) three-quarters of net damage i.e global warming has occurred. These data show an increase in the strongest tropical storms in most ocean basins suggesting how Global Warming has gradually affected the course of things.
Ever since the revelation of the phenomenon of Global Warming, the menace seems to be getting bigger and more devastating with time.
One recent example being the cyclone in Odisha.
Cyclonic storm ‘Daye’ made landfall in Odisha in the morning of 22nd September, causing heavy rainfall in several parts of the state.
The cyclonic circulation, which saw rapid intensification from low-pressure area over west central Bay of Bengal to a tropical storm over north central Bay of Bengal, crossed Odisha coast as a cyclonic storm but shortly weakened into a deep depression, bringing heavy to extremely heavy rains to many parts of the country.
Cyclone Daye revived Monsoon 2018 over almost all parts of the country, and Rajasthan too not being an exception to DAYE’S effect, rejoiced good spell of rain and thundershowers during that time.
The remnants of cyclone Daye was seen as a well-marked low-pressure area over Southeast Rajasthan and adjoining West Madhya Pradesh, which was responsible for giving moderate to heavy showers over east Rajasthan.
This untimely incessant rainfall pouring over almost the whole of Rajasthan also gives enough reason to be cynical and concerned.
In the span of 24 hours from 8:30 am on 23rd September, Chittorgarh recorded 79 mm of rain, followed by Sawai Madhopur 39 mm, Bhilwara 34 mm, Ajmer 33 mm, Udaipur 22 mm, Jaipur 15 mm, Kota 8 mm and Bundi 4 mm.
This unprecedented event should be taken as an insinuated effort from nature, that if a weakened cyclone in the far east corner of the country could cause such climatic changes in the west most region, then what are we looking at, if something bigger bursts onto the scene.
The current scheme of things
Now, with the system further weakening into a low-pressure area, the region has shifted over south Haryana and adjoining parts of northeast Rajasthan, making weather conditions still conducive for some more heavy rains over Northeast Rajasthan in places such as Jhunjhunu, Alwar, Bharatpur, Dausa, Dholpur, Sikar and Jaipur.
Speculations suggest that the system would gradually weaken and move in north-northeast direction away from the state. Hence, the weather is expected to get clear by 25th September. In wake of this, humid easterly winds would be replaced by warm and dry northwesterly winds bringing bright sunshine in the days to come.
The Big Picture
With the catastrophic impacts of tropical storms already out in the sun, the need to reduce Global Warming still remains to be a huge challenge.
Cyclones such as DAYE could’ve taken a more diabolical shape and effect, if compared to the previous cyclones in the state, or is already more escalated due to Global Warming, YOU NEVER KNOW! But what needs to be understood here, is that events like cyclones, untimely rainfall are mere trailers of what Global Warming has for us in the future.
And if the trailer looks so discomfortingly uncertain, we can only hope that the BIG PICTURE never releases.