Left Menu
Development News Edition

NASA study reveals 'India and China leading in greening on land'


NASA study reveals 'India and China leading in greening on land'
Image Credit: Pixabay

India and China are leading the global greening effort, which is quite contrary to the general perception worldwide, a latest NASA study said Monday, observing that the world is a greener place than it was 20 years ago. The NASA study based on data received and analysed from its satellite said that India and China are leading in greening on land. "China and India account for one-third of the greening but contain only 9 per cent of the planet's land area covered in vegetation," said lead author Chi Chen of Boston University.

"That is a surprising finding, considering the general notion of land degradation in populous countries from over exploitation," he said. The study published on February 11, in the journal Nature Sustainability said that recent satellite data (2000–2017) reveal a greening pattern that is strikingly prominent in China and India and overlaps with croplands world-wide. China alone accounts for 25 per cent of the global net increase in leaf area with only 6.6 per cent of global vegetated area.

The greening in China is from forests (42 per cent) and croplands (32 per cent), but in India it is mostly from croplands (82 percent) with minor contribution from forests (4.4 per cent), the NASA study said. China is engineering ambitious programmes to conserve and expand forests with the goal of mitigating land degradation, air pollution and climate change. Food production in China and India has increased by over 35 per cent since 2000 mostly owing to an increase in harvested area through multiple cropping facilitated by fertiliser use and surface- and/or groundwater irrigation. "When the greening of the Earth was first observed, we thought it was due to a warmer, wetter climate and fertilization from the added carbon dioxide in the atmosphere," said Rama Nemani, a research scientist at NASA's Ames Research Center and a co-author of the study.

This study was made possible thanks to a two-decade-long data record from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) instruments on NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites. "Now with the MODIS data, we see that humans are also contributing," she said. Observing that once people realise there is a problem, they tend to fix it, Nemani said in the 1970s and 80s in India and China, the situation around vegetation loss was not good. "In the 1990s, people realized it, and today things have improved. Humans are incredibly resilient. That's what we see in the satellite data," she said.

According to the paper, how the greening trend may change in the future depends on numerous factors. For example, increased food production in India is facilitated by groundwater irrigation. If the groundwater is depleted, this trend may change, it said. The researchers also pointed out that the gain in greenness around the world does not necessarily offset the loss of natural vegetation in tropical regions such as Brazil and Indonesia. There are consequences for sustainability and biodiversity in those ecosystems beyond the simple greenness of the landscape, the research study said.

(With inputs from agencies.)

Download The Devdiscourse News App for Latest News.


TRENDING

OPINION/BLOG/INTERVIEW

Conspiracy theories on COVID 19: Legislators, Scientists, and Journalists all joined the Caravan

Conspiracy theories are not new for virus epidemics. There have been conspiracy theories on HIV-AIDS, Polio Vaccines, Ebola Virus, and several other diseases as well. However, what makes the 2019 Novel Coronavirus different from others is ...

Top 10 Fake News, Myths and Realities on 2019 Novel Coronavirus COVID 19

With nearly 1500 deaths by January 14 and around 65,000 infections in China, the Novel Coronavirus 2019 has become one of the worst health epidemics of the 21st Century. However, 8,573 people have been cured but the rumor mongers are a...

Handling fake news Infodemic in time of Coronavirus epidemic

Social media has provided a platform where everybody can disseminate his her views without any supervision. Its excellent if the message is genuine but misinformation is equally disastrous. Health is such a topic where every Tom and Harry c...

Sentiment Analysis on Budget 2020: Long shot for solution to economic worries?

Industries and individuals alike had high expectations from the government to take tangible steps but the budget 2020 seems to have failed expectations....

Videos

Latest News

Canada to evacuate citizens from virus-hit cruise ship Thursday

The Canadian government will begin evacuating its citizens from a virus-hit cruise ship quarantined off Yokohama, Japan, on Thursday evening, Foreign Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said on Wednesday. The aircraft the government has ch...

Kings trade D Martinez to Golden Knights

The Los Angeles Kings officially traded defenseman Alec Martinez to the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday, parting ways with another veteran. In exchange, the Kings will receive second-round draft picks in 2020 and 21. The pending deal was ...

Pawar demands trust for mosque in Ayodhya

NCP chief Sharad Pawar on Wednesday demanded the Centre to form a trust for building a mosque in Ayodhya similar to the trust to oversee the construction of Ram temple. Speaking at an event here, Pawar said You can form a trust for a temple...

UPDATE 1-Tunisia names new governmnet, avoids risk of early election

Tunisias designated Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh on Wednesday named a new coalition government after reaching an agreement with Ennahda moderate Islamist Party, the biggest power in Parliament, ending an ongoing political crisis of four mo...

Give Feedback