India air pollution 'cutting crop yields by almost half'


www.theguardian.com| Published Monday 3 November 2014

by Azeen Ghorayshi

Air pollution in India has become so severe that yields of crops are being cut by almost half, scientists have found.

Researchers analysed yields for wheat and rice alongside pollution data, and concluded significant decreases in yield could be attributed to two air pollutants, black carbon and ground level ozone. The finding has implications for global food security as India is a major rice exporter.

Black carbon is mostly caused by rural cookstoves, and ozone forms as a result of motor vehicle exhaust, industrial emissions, and chemical solvents reacting in the atmosphere in the presence of sunlight. Both are “short-lived climate pollutants” that exist locally in the atmosphere for weeks to months, with ozone damaging plants’ leaves and black carbon reducing the amount of sunlight they receive.

The study looked at both the effects of,,, read more>


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