B'luru, 8 cities to face heat stress

B'luru, 8 cities to face heat stress
Bengaluru would be among nine Indian cities that are likely to experience heat stress in the coming decades, suggests a research by British scientists. This would expose citizens to deadly consequences of intense heat waves. 

The only consolation for the Garden City is that it is less vulnerable than Kolkata, Chennai, Delhi and Ahmedabad, which are the most heat-stressed cities in the country. The study predicts that the amount of land surface area exposed to dangerous heat stress is likely to rise, and that the frequency of such extreme heat wave conditions will increase in areas already experiencing heat stress.

The scientists estimate that with a two-degree Celsius rise in global warming above the pre-industrial levels — as agreed in the Paris climate change agreement — Karachi and Kolkata might face annual conditions similar to the deadly heat waves that gripped those regions in 2015, killing several thousands.

An analysis of 44 of the 101 most populous mega cities demonstrated that the number of metropolis experiencing heat stress doubled with 1.5 degrees Celsius of warming, potentially exposing more than 350 million additional people to heat stress by 2050 under a mid-range population growth scenario.

“Once global warming hits 1.5 degrees Celsius, we find Mumbai could become heat stressed. With 2.7 degrees Celsius of warming, Hyderabad and Pune could become heat stressed. Once global warming hits 4 degrees Celsius, Bengaluru would qualify as being heat stressed,” team leader Tom K R Matthews from the Liverpool John Moores University told DH.  With the earth already being hotter by 0.8 degrees Celsius from the pre-industrial level, Mumbai’s temperature needs to rise by another 0.7 degrees Celsius before India’s financial capital becomes heat stressed.

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