What is the economic importance of western ghats ? Can you please answer in 2000-4000words
 
 
 

Asked by Suma | 8th Nov, 2015, 02:08: PM

Expert Answer:

Western Ghats are a mountain range that runs almost parallel to the western coast of the Indian peninsula. The Western Ghats, also known as the Sahayadris are divided into northern Sahayadris, Central Sahayadris and the Southern Sahayadris.

Economic importance of the Western Ghats are:

Agricultural Activities: Rice is mainly cultivated in the northern parts of the Western Ghats (Maharashtra). It is cultivated on terraced farms. Coffee is mainly grown on the Baba Budan Hills, Tea is grown in Munnar and Udagmandalam and spices are grown predominantly in Kerala. Coconuts are mainly grown in the coastal regions located to the south of the Konkan plains.

Mining of Minerals: Minerals like manganese, bauxite and iron ore are extracted from different parts of the Ghats. Goa and Kudremukha in the Central Sahayadris are important mining areas in the region.

Tourist destinations: Several hill stations are located in the western Ghats which are visited by tourists all over the country. Saputara in Gujarat, Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra, Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu and Munnar in Kerala are some important hill stations. Many national parks and wild life sanctuaries are also located in the region.

Plantation Agriculture: The southern parts of the Western Ghats experiences long rainy season which is favourable for the growth of plantation agriculture. Hence, plantation agriculture is mainly confined to the southern parts of the Western Ghats.

Forests: Western Ghats receive abundant rainfall upto 250cm annually. High rainfall, hot and humid climate have led to the growth of the luxuriant forests in the region. While a portion of the Sahayadri Mountains have tropical rain forests, the southern parts have the typical “shola” forests which have a wide variety of species. Eucalyptus and teak are grown in the plantation forests.

Causes Rainfall: Western Ghats act as a barrier to the South west monsoon winds causing heavy rainfall in the regions located in the western slopes of the Western Ghats. The average rainfall in the Ghats is about 4000mm. Abundant rainfall shape the economy of many areas which receive abundant rainfall due to the location of the Western Ghats.

Origination of Rivers: An important economic significance of the Western Ghats is that Godavari, Krishna and Kaveri rises in the Western Ghats. These rivers help in cultivation, irrigation, supply of freshwater to domestic and industrial units and in production of hydro electricity.

Answered by Social Science Expert | 9th Nov, 2015, 09:37: AM