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Pakistan farmer drags government in court for climate change

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By- Tarun Pratap

New Delhi: A 25-year-old law student in Lahore, Asghar Lehagiri has dragged the Pakistan government into the court for its inability to work against damage in climate change and subsequently harming local farmers.

A resident of district Rahim Yar Khan in southern Punjab, Asghar Lehagiri has seen the fight of his family and all the low scale farmers around him against the unpredictable weather of Pakistan.

He filed a petition in Lahore High Court demanding action from the Government to counter the climate change. He filed that the government of Pakistan was violating his fundamental rights by neglecting the impact of climate change.

His initiative seems to have worked as Justice Syed Mansoor Ali Shah has ordered the formation of a climate change commission to push the policies that the government promised.

Sajjad Ahmed, the joint secretary of climate change ministry said that the government has made policies, but they might not have been implemented yet.

An issue that is important to a common farmer and to the whole humanity someday might not seem to be not so important for the government.

Climate change has impacted the whole life cycle of people who are dependent on nature. The developing part of the world is facing more problems than the developed.

Countries like the US want developing countries specially China and India to cut their greenhouse gas emission, but these countries are demanding that they should be given the same chance for their development as the developed nations had.

Climate change has created huge problems, the monsoon cycle is disturbed and the direct effect of it is on the farmer. The agriculture depends on the nature and any change in nature impacts it badly.

Most of the developing countries are agricultural dependent countries. The Indian subcontinent has the seasonal agricultural cycle, Rabi and Kharif, climate changes the courses of these seasonal cycles and impacts farmers and economy.

Vidarbha area of India has witnessed many suicides of farmers. A country like India where 70 per cent of the population lives off agriculture faces the worst of any impact on nature.

Asghar Lehagiri, a young law student who belongs to farmer family has had enough. But will his effort make any difference?

People in power need to make policies and push these policies which can counter the climate change.

(With inputs from agencies)

 

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Climate change can have an effect on the taste of the wines

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Climate change can have an effect on the taste of the wine
Climate change can have an effect on the taste of the wine. wikimedia commons

New York, Jan 3, 2018: Although winegrowers seem reluctant to try new grape varieties apparently to protect the taste of the wines, new research suggests that they will ultimately have to give up on their old habit as planting lesser-known grape varieties might help vineyards to counteract some of the effects of climate change.

vineyards. wikimedia commons

“It’s going to be very hard, given the amount of warming we’ve already committed to… for many regions to continue growing the exact varieties they’ve grown in the past,” said study co-author Elizabeth Wolkovich, Assistant Professor at Harvard University.

“With continued climate change, certain varieties in certain regions will start to fail — that’s my expectation,” she said.

The study, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, suggests that wine producers now face a choice — proactively experiment with new varieties, or risk suffering the negative consequences of climate change.

“The Old World has a huge diversity of wine grapes — there are overplanted 1,000 varieties — and some of them are better adapted to hotter climates and have higher drought tolerance than the 12 varieties now making up over 80 per cent of the wine market in many countries,” Wolkovich said.

“We should be studying and exploring these varieties to prepare for climate change,” she added.

Unfortunately, Wolkovich said, convincing wine producers to try different grape varieties is difficult at best, and the reason often comes down to the current concept of terroir.

Terroir is the notion that a wine’s flavour is a reflection of where which and how the grapes were grown.

Thus, as currently understood, only certain traditional or existing varieties are part of each terroir, leaving little room for change.

The industry — both in the traditional winegrowing centres of Europe and around the world — faces hurdles when it comes to making changes, Wolkovich said.

In Europe, she said, growers have the advantage of tremendous diversity.

They have more than 1,000 grape varieties to choose from. Yet strict labelling laws have created restrictions on their ability to take advantage of this diversity.

For example, just three varieties of grapes can be labelled as Champagne or four for Burgundy.

Similar restrictions have been enacted in many European regions – all of which force growers to focus on a small handful of grape varieties.

“The more you are locked into what you have to grow, the less room you have to adapt to climate change,” Wolkovich said.

New World winegrowers, meanwhile, must grapple with the opposite problem — while there are few, if any, restrictions on which grape varieties may be grown in a given region, growers have little experience with the diverse — and potentially more climate change adaptable — varieties of grapes found in Europe, the study said.

Just 12 varieties account for more than 80 per cent of the grapes grown in Australian vineyards, Wolkovich said.

More than 75 per cent of all the grapes grown in China is Cabernet Sauvignon — and the chief reason why has to do with consumers.

“They have all the freedom in the world to import new varieties and think about how to make great wines from a grape variety you’ve never heard of, but they’re not doing it because the consumer hasn’t heard of it,” Wolkovich said. (IANS)