"As Seas Rise, Saltwater Plants Offer Hope Farms Will Survive"

"VEDARANYAM, India — On a sun-scorched wasteland near India's southern tip, an unlikely garden filled with spiky shrubs and spindly greens is growing, seemingly against all odds.

The plants are living on saltwater, coping with drought and possibly offering viable farming alternatives for a future in which rising seas have inundated countless coastal farmlands.

Sea rise, one of the consequences of climate change, now threatens millions of poor subsistence farmers across Asia. As ocean water swamps low-lying plots, experts say many could be forced to flee inland.

'It's hard to imagine how farmers will live,' said Tapas Paul, who as a World Bank official helped channel about $100,000 to help build the small garden a decade ago in a swampy, seaside town dominated by salt flats in southern Tamil Nadu state. 'In the places subject to inundation and sea level rise, there are few options.'"

Katy Daigle reports for the Associated Press August 17, 2015.

Source: AP, 08/20/2015