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We Now Know How Summer Temperatures In India Have Changed In Forty Years

Chances of large scale heat stroke deaths have more than doubled in this period.

15/06/2017 5:02 PM IST | Updated 15/06/2017 5:11 PM IST
STR New / Reuters

A study published by Science Advances says that mean temperatures across India rose by 0.5°C from 1960 to 2009, resulting in increases in heat-related mortality.

The study says that "increase in temperatures in India over this period corresponds to a 146% increase in the probability of heat-related mortality events of more than 100 people. In turn, our results suggest that future climate warming will lead to substantial increases in heat-related mortality, particularly in developing low-latitude countries, such as India, where heat waves will become more frequent and populations are especially vulnerable to these extreme temperatures."

In other words, the chances of more than 100 people dying due to heat waves have more than doubled.

Heat wave days and the mean duration of heat waves increased by approximately 25% in the majority of India, according to the study, with southern and western India experienced 50% more heat wave events during the period 1985–2009 than during the previous 25-year period.

Science Advances is an open access journal from AAAS, American Association for the Advancement of Science, which describes itself as the "the world's oldest and largest general science organization." The authors of the studies say that they have drawn conclusions based on the data from the India Meteorological Department.

Citing World Bank data, the study says that an estimated 23.6% of India's population earned less than $1.25 per day and 25% did not have any access to electricity, and they would be the worst hit by heat waves.

The study says that the "future climate warming will lead to substantial increases in heat-related mortality, particularly in developing low-latitude countries, such as India, where heat waves will become more frequent and populations are especially vulnerable to these extreme temperatures."

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