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Aerosols in Indo-Gangetic plain have led to increase in high rainfall in Himalayan foothills: Study

Scientists have found that aerosols like black carbon and dust, which make the IndoGangetic Plain one of the most polluted regions of the world, have led to increased incidents of high rainfall events in the foothills of the Himalayan region.

The study showed that particulate emissions can alter the physical and dynamical properties of cloud systems and, in turn, amplify rainfall events over orographic regions downwind of highly polluted urban areas.

The IndoGangetic Plain is located south and upwind of the Himalayan foothills. The region is associated with high aerosol loading, much of which is black carbon and dust, and thus provides an opportunity for studying how aerosolaffects extreme rainfall events, particularly whenair mass is forced from a low elevation to a higher elevation as it moves over rising terrain technically called orographic forcing.

A team of researchers from National Institute of Technology Rourkela, Leipzig Institute for Meteorology (LIM), University of Leipzig, Germany, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, Indian Institute of Technology Kanpursupported by the Department of Science and Technology underits Climate Change programmehave highlighted the crucial role of the aerosol direct radiative effect on high precipitation events over the Himalayan region.