New Delhi: Monsoon watchers have for long been puzzled on what could be the reason for increased extreme floods that take place in India from Mumbai to all the way to Guwahati in the northeast -- since monsoon is actually weakening due to climate change.
But some Indian scientists may have found an answer. A team of researchers from the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, Pune, point a finger at the westerly winds coming from the Arabian Sea as being heavily moisture-laden, which leads to extreme floods.
Till now it was believed that monsoon mostly gathers its moisture from the Bay of Bengal.
The scientists told NDTV that such extreme weather events can be predicted two-three weeks in advance and many lives can be saved. Almost a week before heavy rain battered Mumbai on August 29, the same scientists had predicted heavy flooding in the city.
They have found a three-fold increase in occurrence of floods between 1950 and 2016. But surprisingly, monsoon has been weakening during the same period, baffling weather experts. The scientists say this can now be linked with the westerly winds coming from the Arabian Sea which carries a lot of moisture.
Floods in India result in losses of over $3 billion a year. Between 1950 and 2015, India has seen some 268 flooding events killing at least 69,000 people.