Almost everyone in all parts of northern India is currently experiencing a deadly heat wave. Not only India but also in Pakistan including India, deadly heatwave is being prepared. This is the area where one out of every five people in the world lives.
The temperature is expected to reach 50 degree Celsius in Jacobabad, Pakistan. It is approaching an all-time high of summer in the city, considered one of the hottest places on Earth. Delhi, the capital of India, is also suffering from the heat of 44-45 degree Celsius and it is around the hottest April ever. At the same time, the mercury can reach up to 46 degrees in some parts of the northern areas of India. Heatwave warnings are being issued. Public health experts have warned that such extreme heat is especially dangerous in the early months of the year.
According to a recent analysis by environmental scientists, heatwave is directly related to climate change.
Dr. Mariam Zacharias and Dr. Frederick Otto of Imperial College London have found that the kind of heat that has been happening in India since the beginning of this month has already become a common phenomenon as global temperatures continue to rise due to human activities. Used to be.
Dr Maryam, Research Associate at Imperial College London’s Grantham Institute, said, “Climate change is a major factor in the increase in temperature in India in recent months. Before increasing the role of human activities in the rise in global temperature, we in India used to feel such heat once in 50 years like it has been happening since the beginning of this month but now it has become a normal thing. Now we can expect such severe heatwave once every 4 years and unless the emission of polluting elements is stopped, it will become more common.”
Dr Frederick Otto, Senior Lecturer in Climatology at Imperial College London’s Grantham Institute, said, “The current heatwave in India has become even more hot due to climate change. This has happened because of the harmful activities of human beings. These include the burning of coal and other fossil fuels. Now this is becoming the case for every heatwave everywhere in the world. Until greenhouse gas emissions stop, heatwaves in India and elsewhere will only get hotter and more dangerous.
Dr. Friedrich Otto is the leader of the World Weather Attribution Group and was named one of the Most Influential People of the Year 2021 by Time magazine.
The temperatures forecast are similar to the deadly heatwaves that hit India and Pakistan in May-June 2015, which killed at least 4,500 people. The maximum temperature at New Delhi airport reached 44.6 degrees Celsius during the deadly heatwave of June 2015. At the same time, the mercury reached the highest level of 49.4 degree Celsius in Jhadsuguda of Orissa. 45 degree Celsius temperature was recorded in Karachi, Pakistan. At the same time, the mercury reached 49 degrees Celsius in Balochistan and some other cities of Sindh provinces.
The month of March passed in India was the hottest March during the last 122 years. Due to this unpredictable heat, wheat production has declined by 10 to 35 percent in different parts of the country.
Some experts in India are also emphasizing on the need to take steps to provide relief to people from the scorching heat caused by climate change.
Dr. Abhiyant Tiwari, Assistant Professor and Program Manager, Gujarat Institute of Disaster Management said
“Limiting future warming is essential when taking mitigation measures. Extreme, frequent and prolonged periods of heat are no longer a future threat, but have become a regular disaster and cannot be avoided.”
“It will also be necessary to ensure adaptation measures in our action plans to tackle the heat. Such as mass cooling areas, ensuring uninterrupted power supply, availability of safe drinking water and working hours of workers in the most vulnerable groups, especially on hot days, should be changed.
Dr Dilip Mavalankar, Director, Indian Institute of Public Health Gandhinagar said:
“The Indian Meteorological Department is issuing forecast advisories for 1000 cities of India over a period of up to 5 years. Ahmedabad is in the Orange Alert Zone and the temperature here is likely to remain 43-44 degree Celsius and it may increase further.
“People need to heed these advisories. Stay indoors, saturate yourself with water and visit the nearest health center if you feel common symptoms of heat-related illness. Especially take care of the elderly and vulnerable sections, as we did during the Kovid-19 pandemic, as these people can get the effect of heat stroke even when they are sitting indoors.”
Cities should keep an eye on the number of deaths due to various causes on a daily basis. Particular attention should be paid to data on hospital admissions and ambulance calls to reconcile it with the data of the last 5 years and see the true indication of the effect of heat on mortality.
“It is a very quick heatwave and the mortality due to them is also usually high because in the months of March and April people have less adaptation to the heat and they are not ready to tolerate the sudden heat. Central and state and city governments should also pay attention to this. Especially when the Meteorological Department announces the alert Orange and Red Zone, then they should publish a warning about this in the form of advertisement in the newspapers. Apart from this, the public should also be warned through television and radio. This is a warning sign of what is to come in the coming May and June. If we take effective steps now, we can save a large number of people from getting sick and dying.”
In West Bengal, the local government has advised schools to start classes early in the morning and arrange for rehydration salts so that if a child becomes ill, he can be properly treated. Some schools in the state have started online classes so that children do not have to come to school in severe heat. Meanwhile, higher education classes in Orissa have been completely shut down.
While South Asia is expected to reach its highest temperature this week, it is also true that the subcontinent is not the only one facing such severe heat at the moment. The heat has also increased unexpectedly in Argentina and Paraguay. The temperature in Paraguay is expected to reach 40 degrees Celsius today. At the same time, there is a possibility of reaching 38 degrees Celsius in China and 36 degrees Celsius in Turkey and Cyprus. As temperatures rise even higher due to emissions of polluting substances, dangerous heat will become more and more common.