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IMD says 2023 was second warmest year for India since 1901

Worryingly all the five warmest years in Indian weather history were recorded within the last 14 years, suggesting a rapid increase in surface temperature and change in weather patterns. They are 2016, 2023, 2009, 2017 and 2010 (in descending order).
alyan Ray
Last Updated : 01 January 2024, 17:21 IST
Last Updated : 01 January 2024, 17:21 IST

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New Delhi: The year 2023 ended as the second warmest on record for India since 1901, the India Meteorological Department said on Monday, noting that months of August and February were the warmest in the last 123 years.

The annual mean surface temperature over the Indian landmass was 0.65 degrees Celsius above the long-term average temperature, which was marginally lower than 0.71 degrees Celsius recorded in 2016, IMD director general Mrutynjay Mohapatra said.

Worryingly all the five warmest years in Indian weather history were recorded within the last 14 years, suggesting a rapid increase in surface temperature and change in weather patterns. They are 2016, 2023, 2009, 2017 and 2010 (in descending order).

Also December rainfall in the South peninsula comprising the meteorological sub-divisions of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, coastal Andhra Pradesh, Rayalaseema, Kerala, and south interior Karnataka, was the highest since 2001 and 10th highest since 1901. The peninsula received 126% higher rainfall.

The north Indian Ocean witnessed above normal cyclone activity with six tropical storms, three of which (Mocha, Biparjoy and Tej) were extremely severe cyclonic storms.

Mohapatra said most parts of the country were expected to witness relatively warmer mornings with central and northwestern parts set to experience cooler days with the weather office forecasting below normal monthly maximum temperatures over the region.

In addition to tropical cyclones, India also witnessed other extreme weather events like extremely heavy rainfall, floods, landslide, lightning, thunderstorm and droughts with states like Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim bearing the brunt.

According to IMD’s own analysis, as many 1,270 people were killed in thunderstorms and lightning, followed by 860 in floods and 160 in heatwaves.

The weather office cautioned about cold wave days over central India in January and dense fog days over parts of north west and east India for the next three days. Cold day to severe cold day conditions are likely to continue over some parts of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and north Rajasthan during next two days and decrease thereafter.

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Published 01 January 2024, 17:21 IST

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