India among top 5 countries affected by climate change

Climate Change

The Global Climate Risk Index has placed India among the top five countries most affected by climate change in its annual report for 2020.

This is according to the report released by Germanwatch, an independent development think-tank on Thursday in New Delhi.

Germanwatch said prolonged heatwave and floods in Kerala put India on the fifth spot on the countries and regions affected by climate change-induced extreme weather events in 2018.

The list is topped by Japan, Philippines, Germany and Madagascar.

In 2018, a total of 2,081 human lives were lost in these extreme events in India, the maximum for any country that year.

Japan lost 1,282 human lives, while 1,246 died in Germany during the same period.

India has also recorded the highest number of fatalities due to climate change and the second-highest monetary losses from its impact in 2018.

The report said the yearly monsoon season, lasting from June to September, severely affected India in 2018, especially in the state of Kerala.

In the landslides set off by the flooding, 324 people died because of drowning or being buried, the worst in 100 years.

More than 220,000 people had to leave their homes, 20,000 houses and 80 dams were destroyed. The damage amounted to 2.8 billion dollars.

The report said that heatwaves had become almost a permanent feature of Indian summer.

India suffered from one of the longest ever recorded heatwaves in 2018 when the temperature climbed to up to 48 degree centigrade.

Prolonged drought and resultant widespread crop failures, compounded by a water shortage, triggered violent riots and increased migration.

According to the report, India was among those countries and regions that were particularly affected by the extreme heat in both 2018 and 2019.

Since 2004, India has experienced 11 of its 15 recorded warmest years, the reports said.

The list is topped by Japan, Philippines, Germany and Madagascar. (Xinhua/NAN)