Chennai, September 22, 2016: According to the Meteorological Report the average temperature was high in August 2016 compared to recent years. One of the consequences of climate change is rise in mean temperature. The Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) had proposed that we should limit this rise at about 1.5° C. Many experts believe that the average temperature may become higher by about 2° C by the end of the century if we do not take steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In the field of agriculture there are two crops which need immediate attention. First is wheat where temperature determines the duration and thereby yield and the second is potato where the production of seed potato in the North Indian Plains may be adversely affected. Agriculture scientists should initiate anticipatory research to meet these challenges. For example, in wheat, there should be more emphasis on selection on the basis of per day productivity. In the case of potato, true biological seed rather than tubers may have to be used to raise crops. A similar exercise will have to be done in each farming system in order to ensure that we are able to manage temperature rise without serious adverse impact of food security.
M S Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) established in 1988 is a not-for-profit trust. MSSRF was envisioned and founded by Professor M S Swaminathan, agriculture scientist with proceeds from the First World Food Prize that he received in 1987.