On the frequency of the 2015 monsoon season drought in the Indo-Gangetic Plain

Vimal Mishra, Saran Aadhar, Akarsh Asoka, Sivananda Pai, Rohini Kumar
  • Geophysical Research Letters, December 2016, Wiley
  • DOI: 10.1002/2016gl071407

What is it about?

The 2015 drought in the Indo-Gangetic Plain posed new challenges related to food and water security and affected the lives of millions. All-India monsoon rainfall in 2015 was the tenth driest year on record (1906–2015) with a deficit of 14.5%, and the Indo-Gangetic Plain witnessed a rainfall deficit of 25.8% (third rank event). Drought severity was amplified by deficits from the previous years in the Indo-Gangetic Plain and other parts of India. The Indo-Gangetic Plain faced a 2 year cumulative deficit of 51%, and the drought of 2014–2015 was unprecedented with a return period of 542 years. The GRACE data showed the occurrence of consecutive negative terrestrial water storage and groundwater anomalies in 2014 and 2015, mainly centered over the Indo-Gangetic Plain region. Notwithstanding uncertainty in future projections, the multiyear droughts in the same regions can pose challenges for water resources and agriculture.

The following have contributed to this page: Dr SIVANANDA PAI and Saran Aadhar