Flood Current Affairs - 2019
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El-Nino disturbs the atmospheric conditions across the world. El-Nino occurs every two-to-seven years with very strong El Niño’s occurring about every 15 years results in droughts, floods, wildfires, dust and snow storms, fish kill, and even elevated risks of civil conflicts.
The El-Nino is measured by studying the averages sea surface temperature anomalies over the central-eastern tropical Pacific. A study which analyses the impact of global warming on El-Nino has been published in the journal Nature in December 2018.
Findings of the Study
The important findings of the study are:
- The study serves a warning to the countries on all continents that suffer from these extreme weather events during strong El Niño events such as the ones during 1982-83, 1997-98 and 2015-16.
- The study notes that eagerly-awaited winter rain and snow storms over California did not occur during the latest extreme El Nino. Hence it is unclear whether global warming is already affecting El Nino and its remote impacts.
- The study argues that it is unclear if the impact of global warming on El Nino can easily be extracted considering its intrinsic tendencies and its dependency on so many factors that are not easily predictable.
The study concludes that various models to study El-Nino deliver a slightly different rendition of El Niño compared to nature. Hence it is imperative that models be held to very stringent standards on their performance of El Niño behaviour during historic periods, especially the 20th century, as a test of their reliability for future projections. As a result it is difficult to conclude how reliably the models can project El Niño response to global warming in addition to how the models perform in reproducing floods and droughts of 20th century.
Government of India and Asian Development Bank (ADB) have signed a loan agreement of $60 million for financing project for renovation, protection and community-based flood risk management activities along the Brahmaputra river in Assam. The objective of the program is to enhance the reliability and effectiveness of flood and river bank erosion risk management systems in Assam. Duration of the loan is 20 years with the grace period of five years. Interest rates are determined by ADB based on London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) and commitment charge of 0.15% per year.
In 2010, ADB had approved the Tranch 2 Loan of $120 million for Assam Integrated Flood and River Bank Erosion Risk Management Investment Program. The Project 2 of the program will help to fund the structural and non-structural measures in three sub Project areas – Palasbari Gumi, Kaziranga and Dibrugarh along the Brahmaputra river which covers 20 km of riverbank protection work and flood embankments upto 13 km.
The executing and implementing agencies for this project are Flood and River Erosion Management Agency of Assam and Assam State Disaster Management Authority. The project will create and strengthen disaster management system and knowledge base for flood forecasting.
The river originates from Mansarovar Lake in Himalayas in Tibet with the name Yarlung Tsangpo. It is one of the major rivers of Asia flowing in China, India and Bangladesh. The river has different names along its path. It is known as Yarlung Tsangpo in China, and Brahamputra in India. When it enters Bangladesh, it is called Jamuna river before merging with Ganga and finally Meghna when it drains into Bay of Bengal.
Asian Development Bank
It is a Multilateral development bank established on 19th December 1966 with objective to promote social and economic development in Asia. It is headquartered at Manila, Philippines. The President of the bank is Takehiko Nakao. Presently 67 countries are the member of ADB and Japan and United States are the largest shareholders of the bank. Other shareholders include China, India and Australia.