"Thermal impact on the earth is seen in terms of global warming. Earth has warmed by about 0.34 degree Celsius since the mid 1970s and the eight warmest years on record have occurred since 2001," senior scientist with Goa-based National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) Dr Mahua Saha, told representatives of SAARC nations.

Saha was deliberating on the topic impact of climate change on coral reefs during ongoing five-day workshop of SAARC nations organised by NIO for SAARC Coastal Zone Management Centre at Port Blair in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, which concludes on December 19.

"As per IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), by the end of this century, the best estimate of temperature increase is almost two degree Celsius. This trend makes the land and ocean warmer and alters long term weather patterns," she said.

Policy makers and scientists from four SAARC nations - India, Bangladesh, the Maldives and Sri Lanka - are taking part in the event.

The discussions during the workshop will decide the roadmap for the SAARC nations on the issue.     

Dr Saha said since industrial revolution, human activities have increased the concentration of green house gases leading to gradually increase the temperature of land and the ocean.

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