Stubble burning returns in Punjab after wheat harvesting; 9,247 discipline fires and counting

Made from wheat stubble, ‘turdi’ (dry fodder) is taken into account the perfect for cattle due to its dietary worth however farmers in Punjab have as soon as once more resorted to stubble burning after wheat harvesting this yr.

From April 6 to May 15, 9,247 discipline fires have been reported within the state. As many as 507 fires have been recorded on May 15 towards the 47 fires the identical day final yr, suggesting that discipline fires would proceed in Punjab for extra days this season. Last yr, 14,117 discipline fires have been reported through the above-mentioned interval. In 2021, 7,808 fires have been reported.

Though there was a drop of 34 per cent in discipline fires this yr, specialists mentioned this was all the way down to harvesting beginning late this time because of unseasonal heavy rains and hailstorms.

According to the Punjab Pollution Control Board, the very best variety of fires was reported from the Moga district (932). Gurdaspur (770), Amritsar (710), Firozpur (685), Ludhiana (624), Sangrur (614), Bathinda (559), Barnala (527), Muktsar (521), Tarn Taran (413), Fazilka (412), Patiala (383), Jalandhar (334), Hoshiarpur (332) and Kapurthala (292) adopted.

Rupnagar recorded the bottom variety of fires — 11. Mohali (18), NawanShahr (62), Pathankot (76), Fatehgarh Sahib (83), and Malerkotla (161) are the opposite districts recording decrease numbers.

The highest variety of fires in a single day this season was recorded on May 11 (1,554). May 6 (1, 221), May 13 (1,113), May 10 (1,019), May 5 (892), May 12 (752) and May 8 (604) got here subsequent.

Experts mentioned the farmers will not be burning wheat stubble however solely the higher portion of the roots. After making fodder, a couple of centimetres of the higher a part of the roots are left within the discipline, and farmers set that portion on fireplace and, within the course of, burn the soil too.

“This burning can easily be avoided with a little push from the government. It burns soil, organic matter in the field and several soil-friendly insects. Also, it leads to the loss of nitrogen and diammonium phosphate (DAP) and potassium, besides generating high amounts of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and black carbon, leading to environmental pollution. It also affects the crop productivity and soil fertility,” mentioned Dr Amrik Singh, district coaching officer, Gurdaspur, Department of Agriculture.

He added that if the farmers don’t burn it, the leftovers might be managed by ploughing the sphere a few times and subsequently with gentle irrigation, which ends up in mixing the leftover within the soil earlier than the following sowing.

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