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Herald Journal of Geography and Regional Planning Vol.

3 (4): 131 - 139 August, 2014

Available online http://www.heraldjournals.org/hjgrp/archive.htm
Copyright 2014 Herald International Research Journals
ISSN: 2350 2185

Full Length Research Paper

Sustainable development of Horticulture in West

Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh (India): A debate
on food security and climate change
Gibji Nimasow1*, Karma Chozom2 , Oyi Dai Nimasow3 and Pema Tsering4

*Senior Ass. Prof., Department of Geography, Rajiv Gandhi University, Rono Hills, Doimukh 791112 Arunachal
Pradesh (INDIA)
Department of Geography, Rajiv Gandhi University, Rono Hills, Doimukh 791112 Arunachal Pradesh (INDIA)
Assistant Professor, Department of Botany, Rajiv Gandhi University, Rono Hills, Doimukh - 791112 (INDIA)
Central Institute of Himalayan Culture Studies, Dahung, West Kameng District, Arunachal Pradesh (INDIA)

Received March 08, 2013

Accepted June 24, 2014

Sustainable Development is a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising
the ability of future generation to meet their own needs. The cultivation of fruits and vegetables is
known as Horticulture. Agriculture is the mainstay of the people of Arunachal Pradesh and horticulture
is one of the significant opportunities for their economic development. West Kameng District is one of
the important producers of horticultural crops, because of its suitable climatic conditions for some
specific crops. There is a vast scope for growing crops like Apple, Pears, Plum, Pine-apple, Orange,
Grapes, Kiwi and Vegetables like- Cabbage, Cauliflower, Beans, Tomato, Radish, Beans, Chilies,
Ginger, etc. But in recent years due to increase in population causing rapid changes in climatic
conditions has put an alarming sign in the development of the horticulture in the district. Climatic
changes in the district is taking place due to increasing demands of the population in the form of mass
deforestation, construction of buildings, increase in temperature, rainfall variability, etc. Consequently,
the production rate of horticultural crops has declined in the recent decades. A comprehensive survey
and personal interview / observation of the area reveal that the changes in climatic conditions have
caused deep impacts on the essential growth conditions of horticultural crops in the area. Therefore,
the sustainability of horticultural activities in the district has been threatened to a greater extent, which
needs immediate controlling measures.
Keywords: Sustainable Development, Food security, Climate change, Horticulture, West Kameng (India).
The concept of sustainable development is intuitively
understandable, but remains difficult to be expressed in a
concrete practical definition as it is interpreted differently
from different field (Briassoulis, 2001). It is a pattern of
resource use that aims to meet human needs while
preserving the environment so that these needs can be
met not only in the present, but also for generations to
come (Smith and Rees, 1998). It contains within it two
key concepts:

the concept of needs, in particular the essential

*Corresponding Author E-mail: gibji26@yahoo.co.in

needs of the world's poor, to which overriding priority

should be given; and

the idea of limitations imposed by the state of

technology and social organization on the environment's
ability to meet present and future needs (the Brundtland
Report, United Nation Report, 1987).
Sustainable Agriculture is environmental friendly methods
of farming that allow the production of crops or livestock
without damage to the farm as an ecosystem. Apart from
this, it also prevents the adverse effects on soil, water
supplies, biodiversity, or other surrounding natural
resources. The concept of sustainable agriculture is an
intergenerational one in which we pass on a conserved or
improved natural resource base instead of one which has

Herald J. Geogr. Rgnl. Plann. 132

been depleted or polluted. Ecologist define the carrying

capacity of the ecosystem as the population of humans
and animals that can be sustained, based on the primary
productivity of plants, with the available resources and
services without damaging the resource base- soil, water
and environment (Daily et al.1992).
India has around 18% of the world population, 15% of the
world livestock with only 2.3% of the total geographical
area and 0.5% of pasture and grazing lands. The per
capita availability of land has fallen drastically from 0.92
ha in 1951 to about 0.32 ha in 2001, and it is projected to
decline to 0.09 ha by 2050. The pressure on the land is
increasing rapidly and land degradation is on the rise.
Deteriorating soil and water resources are posing serious
problems to agricultural production (Venkateswarlu et al.
Food security refers to the availability of food and
one's access to it. A household is considered food-secure
when its occupants do not live in hunger or fear of
starvation. The two commonly used definitions of food
security are given by the UN's Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO) and the United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA):
Food security exists when all people, at all times,
have physical, social and economic access to sufficient,
safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and
food preferences for an active and healthy life.
Food security for a household means access by
all members at all times to enough food for an active,
healthy life. Food security includes at a minimum the
ready availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods,
and an assured ability to acquire acceptable foods in
socially acceptable ways (that is, without resorting to
emergency food supplies, scavenging, stealing, or other
coping strategies).
The stages of food insecurity range from food secure
situations to full-scale famine. Famine and hunger are
both rooted in food insecurity. Food insecurity can be
categorized as either chronic or transitory. Chronic food
insecurity translates into a high degree of vulnerability to
famine and hunger; ensuring food security presupposes
elimination of that vulnerability. It is similar to
undernourishment and is related to poverty, existing
mainly in poor countries. FAO declared that we were still
far from achieving MDG-millennium development goal,
that is, halving the number of hungry people worldwide by
2015 (Van Eeckhout , 2010).
It is found that the food consumption levels in India
will increase from the current level of 2400 kcal/per
capita/day to about 3000 kcal/per capita/day in 2050 and
projected that the demand for cereals will rise to 243 Mt
in 2050, an increase of 0.9% from 1999 to 2001 (Singh,
2009). Our earth has different land cover where more
than three-quarters of land surface is unsuitable for crop
cultivation, suffering from severe constraints of being too
cold (13%), too dry (27%) or too steep (12%), or having
poor soils (40%). The global concern about food security,

quality of future life and growing awareness of

environmental degradation is posing serious question to
the achievements of science (Lashkar, 2003).
The cultivation of fruits and vegetables is known as
Horticulture. Horticultural activities help to cover waste
land and to improve the environmental conditions and the
socio-economic status of the people.
significantly contributes an important share to the Indian
economy. The income elasticity for fruits and vegetables
is reported to be 0.42% and 0.35% respectively, against
only 0.05% for rice and -0.06% for wheat. The annual
growth rate in domestic demands for fruits and
vegetables is estimated at 3.34% and 3.03% respectively
(Chand, 2008). Other independent estimates also show
that about 76% of fruits and vegetables are consumed
fresh, whereas 22% is lost or gets wasted in the
marketing channel (Acharya, 2007).
In terms of fruit production, India stands second in the
world, producing 46.9 million tones fruits per year
(Anonymous, 2004). India is the second largest producer
of fruits and vegetables and their production has tripled
during the last 50 years. Other sectors in horticulture like
plantation crops, floriculture, root & tuber crops,
mushroom, medicinal and aromatic plants also
progressed well. Today horticulture crops cover about
25% of total agricultural export of India and during last
few years corporate sectors are also showing a major
shift in consumption pattern in favour of fresh and
processed fruits and vegetables. There will be greater
technology adoption both in traditional horticulture
enterprise as well as in commercial horticulture sectors
(Ghosh, 1999). Horticulture should receive greater
attention in the hills after taking care of proper soil and
conservation measures.
adaptations, particularly in temperate fruits and nuts
requiring specific chilling hours for flowering, irrigation
management and drought management are immediate
research and extension issues (Ghosh, 2012).
The most general definition of climate change is a
transformation in the statistical properties of the climatic
system when considered over long periods of time,
regardless of cause (National Snow and Ice Data Center,
2001). Accordingly, it does not represent fluctuations over
periods shorter than a few decades. It is considered as a
major threat to agriculture and food production. In 2007,
the United Nations predicted that zones stuck by drought
in Sub-Saharan Africa might increase from 60 million to
90 million hectares from now to 2060 and that the
number of people suffering from malnutrition might
increase up to 600 million from now to 2080 (Sasson,
2012). The term sometimes is used to refer specifically to
climatic changes caused by human activity, as opposed
to the changes that may have resulted as part of Earth's
natural processes (UN Convention on Climate Change,
1994). In this latter sense, used especially in the context
of environmental policy, the term climate change today is
synonymous with

Nimasow et al 133.

anthropogenic global warming. Within scientific journals,

however, global warming refers to surface temperature
increases, while climate change includes global warming
and everything else that increasing greenhouse gas
amounts will affect (National Aeronautics Space Agency,
2011). According to the assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 2007 the
South Asia (the Indian region) will experience a
temperature rise of 0.88-3. 16C by 2050 and overall
temperature increase is likely to be higher in rabi or
winter season. Any change in the climate, which perturbs
the vegetation-climate equilibrium will lead to significant
changes in the demographic patterns of these species.
Amongst these, temperature is the most common limiting
factor affecting various aspects of vegetation dynamics
(Korner et al. 2004).
Factors that can shape climate are called climate
forcings or "forcing mechanisms". These include such
processes as variations in solar radiation, deviations in
the Earth's orbit, mountain-building and continental drift,
and changes in greenhouse gas concentrations. There
are a variety of climate change feedbacks that can either
amplify or diminish the initial forcing. Some parts of the
climate system, such as the oceans and ice caps,
respond slowly in reaction to climate forcings, while
others respond more quickly. Forcing mechanisms can
be either "internal" or "external". Internal forcing
mechanisms are natural processes within the climate
system itself (e.g., the meridional overturning circulation).
External forcing mechanisms can be either natural (e.g.,
changes in solar output) or anthropogenic (e.g.,
increased emissions of greenhouse gases).
Depending on the location of farm, climate change could
affect the horticultural industry through:

increased crop water needs

reduced water availability

greater crop damage due to frosts and heat

increased pest and disease activity

increased damage from extreme weather events,
and changing production regions (where the crops grow)
or cropping cycles.
The Northeastern Region of India is expected to be
highly prone to the consequences to climate change
because of its geo-ecological fragility, strategic location
vis--vis the eastern Himalayan landscape and
international borders, its trans-boundary river basins and
its inherent socio-economic instabilities. Environmental
security and sustainability of the region are and will be
greatly challenged by these impacts. The region falls
under high rainfall zone with subtropical type of climate.
Still, under influence of global climate change even high
rainfall areas are facing drought like situations in the
current years. Droughts and floods are the adverse
climatic conditions arising out of deficit and excess
rainfall, respectively. Climate change is seen and
experienced by people all over the world. The tribal

communities of Arunachal Pradesh have started to feel

the impacts of changes in climate. The people in
Mechuka, West Siang District, Arunachal Pradesh, are
experiencing a change in the snowfall pattern and
intensity since last 1215 years. Earlier snowfall started
from late October and reached up to their homes. Now
snowfall starts only during December and rarely reaches
near their homes. The Villagers of Thungri near Rupa
also experience similar change in snowfall pattern. The
villagers believe that this may be due to increase in
population as well as in temperature; hence the snow
dries up in the air before reaching the ground (Bharali
and Khan, 2011).
Agriculture is the mainstay of the people of Arunachal
Pradesh and horticulture is one of the significant
opportunities for their economic development. Arunachal
Pradesh having an area of 83, 743 km2 is situated in
eastern Himalayan range comprising of foothills and
valleys. The altitude ranges from 170 m to 1000 m (MSL)
in foothills and valleys, 1000 m to 2000 m (MSL) in mid
hills and above 2000 m (MSL) in high hills. It is endowed
with varied agro-climatic conditions starting from tropical,
sub-tropical to temperate zone and the prevalence of
such agro-climatic condition has given home to variety of
wild fruits and plants in different zones of the state.
Horticulture is practiced in one form or the other
throughout the state. The government of Arunachal
Pradesh has established number of horticultural farms in
various districts and circles.
West Kameng District is one of the important
producers of horticultural crops, because of its suitable
climatic conditions for some specific crops. The climatic
condition of the area is conducive for horticultural
development. There is a vast scope for growing crops like
Apple, Pears, Plum, Pine-apple, Orange, Grapes, Kiwi
and Vegetables like- Cabbage, Cauliflower, Beans,
Tomato, Radish, Brinjal, Rajmah, Chillies, Ginger, Laisak,
etc. The horticultural activities in the district could help in
utilizing the waste land, reduce the area under shifting
cultivation, prevent soil erosion and improve the socioeconomic conditions of the people. Apart from these
horticultural activities plays significant role in providing
employment opportunities to the rural masses leading to
the overall economic development of the villagers.
Horticulture industry has unique role to play in the health
and economy of the people and country. Apart from
availability of fruits for consumption, orchards help in
maintaining ecological balance as well as checking soil
erosion (Swarup et al. 1992).
In past tribal people were completely dependent on
Jhum cultivation for their livelihood. Since 15-20 years
the famers have started switching over to horticultural
crops reigning with their homestead lands. Some farmers
have taken to plantation crop like tea and areca nut in the
area. Some of the farmers have expressed interest in
growing rubber plantation (Majumdar, 1990). Climatic
changes in the West Kameng district of Arunachal

Herald J. Geogr. Rgnl. Plann. 134

Figure 1: Location map of study area

Pradesh is taking place due to increasing demands of the

population in the form of mass deforestation, construction
of buildings, increase in temperature, rainfall variability,
etc. Consequently, the production rate of horticultural
crops has declined in the recent decades. Pollution
released to atmosphere during combustion or by
industrial processes can damage the crops and thus
reduce the production.
Study area
The West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh has
been selected as the study area which is located in
between 26 56 N to 28 01 N latitudes and 91 30 E to
92 40 E longitudes. The nomenclature of Kameng
district can be traced to the mighty Kameng River, a
tributary of the Brahmaputra River. Carved out of the
erstwhile Balipara Frontier tract in 1919, Kameng district
was further bifurcated into East and West Kameng district
in 1980. The district covers an area of 7, 422 km2 which
forms about 8.86 % of the total area of the state. The

altitude ranges between 130 to 5621 meters above mean

sea level (MSL). Juxtaposed between the Sela, Bomdila
and Chaku ranges, the district is drained by the Tenga,
Bichom and Dirang Chu rivers. The district experiences
cool tundra climate in the mountains accompanied by
snowfall in winter. The district is divided into Bomdila,
Thirizino and Rupa subdivisions with the district
headquarters at Bomdila (Figure 1).
The present work is an attempt to study the various
aspects of horticulture in the district like geographical
conditions, area and production. To debate on
sustainable development of horticulture in West Kameng
district in terms of food security and climate change and
to suggest desirable measures for reducing climatic
changes for sustainability of horticulture in the area.
To carry out the present work both primary and
secondary data has been collected from different
sources. Field visits were conducted in the important

Nimasow et al 135.

Table 1: Production of Fruits in West Kameng District, 1998 99

Sl. No.


Area (in hectare)

Production (in MT)





Source: District Horticulture Office, Bomdila

horticultural production units and training centres of the

area. The available literatures on horticulture in various
books and journals were consulted for in depth
knowledge. The district and state statistical handbooks
were used for deriving the information related to
population, area and production of horticultural crops.
Personal interview has been taken from Mr. N.
Phoichulpa, District Horticultural Officer, West Kameng
district, Bomdila, who has been working since 8th June
2004 and other villagers who are engaged in horticultural
activities. The workers of the horticultural farms were
interacted and questionnaires / schedules were filled for
generating relevant information related to impact of
climate change on the sustainability of horticulture in the
study area.
Arunachal Pradesh is a mountainous tract with wide
geographical diversity. The settlements are scattered and
isolated from one another. The human life on the hills is
also accounted by the lack of adequate transport and
communication facilities. The government of Arunachal
Pradesh in its agricultural policies is putting all efforts to
make every human habitation self-sufficient in food
grains. Out of which horticulture forms one of the main
activities of the department. The diversity of soil types,
typical topography and peculiar agro-climatic conditions
provide vast scope for growing temperate and subtropical fruits. The climatic condition of the district is
conducive for horticultural development. There is a vast
scope for growing apple, pears, plum, pineapple, orange,
grapes, kiwi and vegetables. The economy of the state is
greatly influenced by horticultural activities. Horticulture is
considered as the backbone and future of rural economy.
Keeping in view these aspects, emphasis has been given
to develop horticulture in the state as incentives to the

farmers in West Kameng district. The department

achieved its goal in promoting the development of
horticultural crops and helping the interested progressive
farmers to grow more fruits and vegetables through which
they can improve their economic condition. The area and
production of important crops are given in table 1, 2 and
3 respectively. The individual performances of crops in
the recent decades are discussed below:Kiwi
Kiwi is sub-temperate and high altitudinal fruit; about
5000 feet (MSL) is optimum for the plantation of Kiwi.
These fruits are mainly cultivated in hilly tracks of West
Kameng district because natural criteria are best for the
growth and development of the fruit. It needs temperature
below 7 C and requires sufficient amount of sunlight for
the photosynthesis process. So, site selection is
important for successful cultivation of Kiwi. Kiwi
cultivation in the district has been taken up few years
ago. The implementation of scientific technology,
selection of suitable site and the favourable agro-climatic
conditions had made the cultivation of Kiwi successful
since its inception. It is a permanent creeper plant which
has very hard stems in comparison to other creepers. It
needs iron rods for growing up. Kiwi is a nutritious fruit
with large scale demand at home as well as outside the
state. It is cultivated in some selected areas of Dirang,
Salari and Bomdila. The cultivation of Kiwi is also
spreading out to other parts of the district due to its
success in the recent years. The area under Kiwi
cultivation was 100 hectares during the year 2004 - 05
and the total production was 20 metric tonnes.
Apple is very much popular in the district since many

Herald J. Geogr. Rgnl. Plann. 136

Table 2: Production of Fruits in Bomdila Circle, 1998 99

Sl. No.


Area (in hectare)

Production (in MT)





Source: District Horticulture Officer, Bomdila

Table 3: Production of fruits in West Kameng district during the year 20042005
Sl. No.

Large Cardamom

Area (in hectare)


Production (in MT)


Source: District Horticulture Officer, Bomdila

decades. It is cultivated in the higher reaches of the

district but mostly it is cultivated in Shergaon and Dirang.
Shergaon Apple Farm is popular all over the country.
This farm has been given due emphasis and care by the
government of Arunachal Pradesh in the form of
incentives, HYV seeds, etc. Thus, the highest production
of apples comes from this part of the district. The
production is partially consumed by the people inhabiting
the surrounding areas and the surplus production is
sometimes exported to other parts of the state as well as
outside the state. Apples of Shergaon is very sweet and
its size differs from big to small, likewise the cost of
apples varies according to its size, the big apple costs
high rate per kg and small apples costs comparatively

less. Shergaon and Dirang have suitable agro-climatic

condition for its cultivation. Shergaon Apple Farm is
contributing a good share of Apple production in the
state. The total area under Apple during the year 2004
2005 was 1598 hectares and the total production was
174 metric tonnes. Some characteristic features of the
two important Apple farms in the district are given below:State Horticultural Farm, Shergaon
The state horticultural farm, Shergaon was established
during the year 1976 - 77 over an area of 120 hectares
under the horticultural development programme with the

Nimasow et al 137.

following objectives:
To raise and multiply planting material to meet
domestic requirements.
To establish a progeny-cum-demonstration
garden to motivate the local farmers.
To impart training on various horticultural
activities to the staffs and orchardists.
To conduct trails and demonstration.
Regional Apple Nursery, Dirang
The Regional Apple Nursery was set up at
Dirang during the year 1977 - 78 with the assistance
from North Eastern Council (NEC). The nursery
was set up with the objectives of multiplication of
temperate fruit plants through the healthy mother trees.
The nursery was initially started with an area of 4. 4
hectares under Bearing and Non-Bearing Fruit
Plants like - Apple, Plum and Peach. During
the year 1978 - 79 an additional area of 17.6
hectares during the year 1983-84 an area of 8 hectares
was further added. As on 31st march 2006, the total area
of the nursery was 30 hectares in which different fruit
crops were planted in the nursery premises. During the
year 1981 - 82 fruit preservation-cum-demonstration
center was also established to utilize the un-marketable
Orange is a sub-tropical fruit which requires sufficient
amount of sunlight especially during the flowering
season. During growing season, sunlight and irrigation is
very much essential. Proper care is also required to
protect the trees against diseases like leave
roll, pest, insects, etc. The orange plants need weeding in
time else the plant will be infected by the insects. The
district has good climatic conditions for the cultivation of
orange. Orange is cultivated all over the district
but some areas like Bomdila, Kalaktang, Singchung,
Buragaon, Salari and Dirang are much successful in
orange cultivation. Plantation of orange is mostly
done during the month of February and March. Lining of
the stem of tree is necessary to protect the tree
from diseases. An orange tree takes at least 5 years to
bear fruit. For proper growth of orange plant, it
must be protected from the disease of orange plant which
is citrus canker, leave minor and leave roller which may
spread to whole trees and decrease the fruit
production. Chemical fertilizers, organic manures like
black gold, vermin-compost, etc are used as manure to
the orange plants for better growth of plants and
higher yields. The total area under orange cultivation in
the district during the year 2004 2005 was 266 hectares
and the total production was168 metric tonnes.

The climatic condition favours for all varieties of banana
in the district, there are no specific area for banana
cultivation. Banana is mostly cultivated along the
boundary line of the horticultural farms. Varieties of
bananas are grown in the region, which varies in its
shape and size accordingly its taste also varies. Banana
is common in the whole region more or less all
households of villages have their own banana gardens.
There is no particular season for banana cultivation and
fruiting, so throughout the year one can get banana which
is nutritious and also helps in digestion. The total area
under banana in the district during 2004 2005 was 72
hectares and the total production was 188 metric tonnes.
Vegetable cultivation in any region is significant due to its
immediate need for the family; in every region people are
engaged in vegetable cultivation to meet the diet
requirement. Every household in the villages keep
kitchen garden of variety of vegetables. To make the
programme successful, the state government has
undertaken distribution of vegetable siblings, seeds,
fertilizers, plant protection chemicals, etc in all the parts
of the district. West Kameng is one of the highest
producers of vegetables in the state. Bomdila, the
headquarters of the district is one of the surplus and
qualitative producers of variety of vegetables. During the
months of vegetable production in all parts of the state
the vegetables from the district were supplied with cheap
rates. In popular areas the drive has started to gain
popularity and will help people to self sufficiency in their
vegetable requirements as well as produce marketable
surplus. The region has suitable agro-climatic condition
for the production of vegetables. In the region varieties of
vegetables are grown like- cabbage, brinjal, laisak,
cauliflower, pumpkin, rajmah, tomato, carrot, radish,
beans, ladies finger, etc. Most of the households cultivate
vegetables for their self consumption, but whenever there
is surplus it is sold in the market. The whole region
enjoys nutritious, fresh and comparatively low priced
vegetables throughout the year.
These important crops and their production in the
district are source of food security for the people of the
district. But recently due to the impact of climate change,
the rate of production of crops has decreased which is
threatening the food security of the people.
How climate changes can affect horticulture?
The primary climate related threat to horticulture is the

Herald J. Geogr. Rgnl. Plann. 138

amount of water, whether too little or too much. By the

time that drought damage is visible on trees, it is often
too late. We are seeing trees lose branches, and
sometimes uprooted completely, as a result of water
shortages. When stressed by lack of water, trees also
succumb to pests and diseases more readily. Prolonged
droughts increase the risk of fire. It can make soil so hard
that a pickaxe is needed in place of a spade. Not only
does this greatly increase the work involved in
maintaining a cemetery but many plants will not thrive, or
even survive in such parched soil. We replace losses
only when the rains eventually come.

than patterns but the storms seen in the United Kingdom

in the summer of 2007 which deposited up to 50 mm of
rain in an hour, when 10 mm in the same period is
usually considered heavy. Such heavy rain inflicts
physical damage on plants as well as cause floods when
it falls. Hailstorms can cause extensive damage to plants,
especially when they fall on soft, lush, summer growth.
Huge hailstones in places that rarely see hail at all can
destroy a whole seasons display. In some parts of the
world, extreme weather events such as cyclones,
typhoons and hurricanes pose a threat. Therefore,
extreme weather conditions pose serious threats to the
horticultural crops.

Pests and diseases
Too much water can be as bad as too little. Prolonged
flooding can weaken and kill tree roots. Floods are not
confined to low-lying areas. They can occur wherever
rapid rainfall is funneled by the landscape. When floods
are occasional, we wait for the water to drain away and
then clear the debris that has been deposited. Where
floods become frequent, we evaluate protection
measures such as storm drains and deflecting bunds.
One way to shorten the time for which cemeteries are
flooded is to use rainwater harvesting systems. Out of
season rainfall events, especially if high in intensity, often
have devastating consequences for product quality and
production. Our study area falls under mountainous area
where high intensity rainfall can cause road destruction
which can affect the transportation system which is the
main link between production area and the market area.
Hence flood can affect both production quality and
marketing possibilities.
Severe winters always affect our operations, delaying
maintenance work and reducing the output of our
compost farms. They can also cause us to lose
significant numbers of plants. Frost-free winters could
increase the range of plants that we can grow, although
some bulbs require low temperature to trigger growth and
might not thrive in milder conditions. All horticultural crops
are sensitive to temperature, and most have specific
temperature requirements for the development of high
yields and quality. Decisions on the location of production
and crop and cultivar selection are influenced by
Extreme weather events
The effects of individual events as well as the long-term
changing weather patterns can be highly destructive.
Climate scientists find it more difficult to predict events

It is not only plants that are affected by climate change.

Mild winters enable more pests and diseases to survive
and can spread to such areas that were previously free of
them. Rising temperature can lead to pests emerging
sooner: a rise of 1C causes aphid attacks to begin two
weeks earlier. Research suggests that plants suffer more
damage from insects when carbon dioxide levels rise.
This is thought to happen because the leaves contain
less protein and so the insects need to eat more of them.
Higher levels of carbon dioxide may enable plants to
grow faster but also increase the damage they sustain.
West Kameng district is a hilly area with high altitudes
varying from 213m to 4114m (MSL). It has mountainous
type of soil and sufficient rainfall for growing various fruits
of sub-tropical climate. Due to this favourable climatic
condition for the growth and development of horticulture
majority of the population are engaged in horticultural
activities for commercial purpose. Thus, horticulture plays
an important role in economic as well as social life of the
people. In other words, horticulture is sustainable and
assures food security for the people in long run.
Many horticultural crops are grown in the study area
like-kiwi, apple, orange, walnut, peach, plum, pears,
banana, pomegranate, etc. and vegetables like- cabbage,
cauliflower, beans, peas, tomato, etc. All these crops are
grown due to agro-climatic conditions for horticultural
activities and human effort. These horticultural crops are
consumed by local people as well as exported to other
areas and this crops acts the food security for the people
of this area. Wherein food security exists when all people,
at all times, have physical, social and economic access to
sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary
needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.
Thus, horticulture plays an important role as food
security to the people of West Kameng district but in
recent years due to increase in population causing rapid

Nimasow et al 139.

changes in climatic conditions has put an alarming sign in

the development of the horticulture in the district. Climatic
changes refer to a change in the statistical properties of
the climate system when considered over long periods of
time, regardless of cause. Climatic changes in the district
are taking place due to increasing demands of the
population in the form of mass deforestation, construction
of buildings, increase in temperature, rainfall variability,
etc. Consequently, the production rate of horticultural
crops has declined in the recent decades.
Hence, climatic changes have given rise to many
problems in the field of horticultural development in this
district which needs immediate controlling measures like
large scale afforestation with community participation,
strict measures for checking deforestation (illegal timber
operation, forest fires), working out land suitability
analysis of various crops and generating awareness of
climate change and its impact on the global environment
among the local people.
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