04 November 2019
Bhubaneswar: The number of extremely hot days in Odisha is projected to increase by 30 times from 1.62 in 2010 to 48.05 by 2100 if greenhouse gas emissions continue to grow at current rates till the end of the century.
India as a whole will see the number of extremely hot days per year increasing by more than eight times from 5.1 (in 2010) to 42.8 (by 2100), shows a study released here today.
The study conducted by the Climate Impact Lab in collaboration with the Tata Centre for Development UChicago is the first in a series of findings estimating the human and economic costs of climate change and weather shocks in India.
Odisha is projected to see a 3.32-degree Celcius rise in average summer temperature from 28.87 degrees in 2010 to 32.19 degrees Celcius by 2100.
The spike in average summer temperature and the number of extremely hot days has an impact on mortality, finds the study. Odisha is projected to see 42,334 excess climate-related deaths due to an increase in temperature which is almost five times more than the total deaths in State recorded due to cardiac arrest every year.
"We are looking at the increases in temperature and impacts of those on human mortality. What we see is that the average summer temperatures in Odisha might increase by 2 or 3 degrees on par with the global average. If the world continues on this high emission trajectory that its currently on, the mortality rates in Odisha per 1, 00,000 will increase by 34 per 1,00,000 that means in numbers by the end of the century that would be 42,000 that's including some population growth in India. This should naturally be a concern for public health," pointed out Amir Jina, Assistant Professor at the Harris Public Policy and researcher at the Climate Impact Lab talking to reporters here.
"As per the report, among all States in India where temperature is going to increase, Odisha is one of the States which will have a maximum temperature rise. Odisha will have the maximum number of heat days which will result in high heat-induced mortality and morbidity if it's not controlled," stated Leni Choudhury, Country Director, Tata Centre for Development at UChicago.
Choudhury pointed out that in order to mitigate the challenges this research data should be included while framing policies.
"We are very hopeful that Odisha government is very proactive and have taken several steps to address climate-induced mortality and morbidity," she added.
"According to this study, by the end of the 21st century India's temperature will rise by 4 degrees. As per the projection in Odisha, summer temperature will rise by 3.32 degrees Celsius on average. In addition to that extremely hot days will increase by eight times than what it is now but in the case of Odisha, it will increase by 30 times. If such a situation arose not only humans but the entire living world will slowly perish," said Jaya Krushna Panigrahi, Secretary of Orissa Environment Society.
Panigrahi was of the view that a two-pronged policy was the ned of the hour-mitigation and adaptation.
He said the government has to take up measures for mitigation which adaptation has to be taken up at the individual and community level.