You couldn’t have failed to notice that Delhi summers are getting cooler. There is more rainfall, and more happy faces. For that, thank the forest cover in and around Delhi, which has seen a three-fold increase in the past decade, apart from local climatic conditions, say climate scientists.
Trees retain water and pump moisture in atmosphere helping in building and attracting clouds. “It is a known phenomenon that areas with more trees have higher rainfall than arid zones,” said GB Pant, former director of Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology. But there were other factors too. “Rains take place because of a complex procedure. Other conditions also play an important role.”
The link is clear if you go through the weather data for the month of May and the increase in forest cover in Delhi.
The forest cover increased from 88 sq km in 1999 to 283 sq km, about 19.09 per cent of Delhi’s total area, in 2005. It increased to 300 sq km last year — and the city has managed to retain it so far this year.
Rainfall in May over the same period has also risen — from 14.8 mm in 1999 to 104 mm in 2008. It fell in 2003 but there has been a steady rise since the past two years.
Greener and wetter Delhi has made the summer much more bearable. The average temperature for May has steadily fallen — from 37.2 degree Celsius six years ago to 32.5 this year.
So, now you know what to do to make the summers even cooler for your kids.