'India Now More Vulnerable To Climate Change & Risks’, Says Global Report

by Sidharth Pandey 2 years ago Views 2319

'India Now More Vulnerable To Climate Change & Ris
India has moved higher up in the global vulnerability ranking of countries that have faced the risk and impact of climate change, resulting in loss of lives and property. The Annual Climate Risk Index (CRI) was released in Delhi on Wednesday by the German NGO ‘Germanwatch’ on the sidelines of the global climate conference being held in the Spanish capital Madrid.

While India was ranked at the 14th position last year, this time around it’s higher at the 5th position on the Climate Risk Index.

"India's high rank is due to severe rainfalls, followed by heavy flooding and landslides that killed over 1,000 people. The state of Kerala was especially impacted. The floods were described as the worst of the last 100 years. Furthermore, India was struck by two cyclones in October and November 2018 that also nearly killed 1,000 people. Last but not least, India also suffered from extreme heat. While the human death toll was kept considerably low due to public measures, the economic damages were quite severe." According to David Eckstein, Policy Advisor - Climate Finance and Investment at Germanwatch.

While Japan, which was hit by the strongest hurricane in 25 years in September last year, was placed as the most vulnerable, India was ranked first in terms of total fatalities due to extreme weather events and 2nd in the world in terms of losses in millions of dollars. This year’s Global Climate Risk ranking shows how climate change is affecting both rich and poor nations. Japan, which is among the world's richest nations, is placed the highest in the risk index, Madagascar, which is among the poorest countries, is the 4th most vulnerable nation, followed by India.

The report comes at a time when top scientists and leaders are meeting in Madrid in the annual Conference of Parties also known as COP25, organised by the United Nations to find common grounds to prevent the further release and build-up of Greenhouse gasses like Carbon dioxide which trap the heat around the Earth.  

The conference began with the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres' warning that the impacts of climate change are being felt the world over and that efforts so far had been ‘utterly inadequate’ in controlling the problem.

Both the World Metrological Organisation (WMO) and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the UN body tasked with providing accurate scientific information to policymakers, have clearly warned that the world is already witnessing extreme weather events linked to climate change, including flash floods and heatwaves. Hurricanes are expected to increase and intensify if steps are not taken to reign in greenhouse gasses.  

The extreme weather events will also make it more difficult to grow food crops and even lead to reduction in the nutritional intake of people, according to UNCCD, the United Nations Convention on Combating Desertification. For nations like India, which is currently home to1.37 billion people and is expected to overtake China in 2027 to become the most populous nation on the earth, these projections are a cause for even great concern. 

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