Hundreds Die in Heatwave as India Has Hottest Summer on Record


Photo via Sulekha
Temperatures Could Rise to 122 F
India is currently facing the hottest season ever recorded in the nation -- the hottest since record keeping began in the late 1800s. And the heat has been disastrous: Hundreds of people have died already, and many more are seriously ill. Hospitals in one region in the north have been receiving 300 people a day. And it looks like it's going to get worse.The Guardian reports:
The death toll is expected to rise with experts forecasting temperatures approaching 50C (122F) in coming weeks. More than 100 people are reported to have died in the state of Gujarat where the mercury topped at 48.5C last week. At least 90 died in Maharashtra, 35 in Rajasthan and 34 in Bihar ... Officials admit the figures are only a fraction of the total as most of the casualties are found in remote rural villages.
This tragedy is especially brutal for India due to those large swaths of Indians who don't have proper access to medical facilities.

Livestock and wildlife have been suffering as well, with deaths of animals being reported all across Northern India.

And 50C, or 122 F, is hot. The highest temps that I've ever endured have been in the 105-110 F range, and that was pretty unbearable. I can't begin to imagine what 122 F feels like -- especially without access to cold running water or A/C.

But the fact remains that this record-breaking hot summer in India is unlikely to be an anomaly going forward. As Matt reported earlier today, the record breaking high temps have continued to outpace record breaking lows by a ratio of around 2:1 -- and that this past April was the hottest on record, globally. And the Guardian reports that according to the Indian Meteorological Department, "Mean temperatures for both March and April were the highest in more than 100 years."

Which means there's more of this devastating weather on the way, as climate change causes temperatures continue to rise over time.

Via Climate Progress
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