By: K. K. Meena and Pradeep Kumar*
Division of Integrated Farming System, ICAR-Central Arid Zone Research Institute, Jodhpur, INDIA
Climate change is the major challenge in achieving the doubled agricultural yield, and hence, the global goal of zero hunger by 2030. The current non-sustainable chemical-based agriculture practices is reflecting declining trend in agricultural productivity in many parts of the world which may be a potential factor for food crisis. The situation is further going to more aggravate in coming days due to climate change. The Indian subcontinent being a tropical country may face more severe challenges than expecting. India is home for around 17.7 % of the global population with merely 2.4% land and 4% fresh water of total world’s available land and water, respectively. According to the recent World Bank Development Indicators, the agricultural land share in India is 60.4%. However, as much as two-third of the cultivated area in India is completely dependent on monsoon for water requirements. Further, increasing urbanization, pollution, chemical contamination, and uncontrolled use of synthetic agro-inputs have worsen the already threatening situation posed by constantly increasing frequency of abiotic stress incidences – particularly acute and chronic drought, high temperature, flash floods, erratic precipitation, deteriorating soil health, and land degradation due to diverse anthropogenic causes.
Cumulatively, these circumstances may pose challenge to sustainable agricultural crop production, thereby threatening the food security in coming years. In this context, sustainable interventions are critically needed to retain the desired rate of crop production irrespective of the adverse environmental pressure(s) instigated by climate change.