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Himalayas Experiencing Rapid Climate Change

May 18, 2012; 11:02 AM ET

Average annual mean temperatures in the Himalayas increased 1.5 Celsius or 0.06 Celsius per year between 1982 and 2006, which is three times greater than the average global increase for the same time period, according to new research from the University of Massachusetts, Boston and the Bangalore based Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE).

The Himalayan region

The research team analyzed temperature and rainfall data, and NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) values from remotely sensed imagery to come up with the values, according to the research article..

The average start of the growing season was 4.7 days earlier at the end of the study period than what it was at the start.

Also, the average annual precipitation in the region increased 6.52 mm a year during the period.

All of these changes have clearly had an impact on the lives of the local Himalayan population who have been directly witnessing the impacts to their agriculture.

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