'Climate change can trigger more devastating floods in India'

IANS
Friday, 24 August 2018

Kat Kramer said this was a wake-up call that more is needed to be done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

NEW DELHI: With more than a million people displaced by flooding in Kerala, Britain-based charity Christian Aid on Friday warned that more devastating floods in India will become the norm if nothing is done to tackle climate change.

Simultaneously, it plans to support 10,000 people in each of the flood-hit Wayanad and Idukki districts.

As efforts continue to help people sheltering in thousands of relief camps across the state, Christian Aid's Global Lead on Climate Change, Kat Kramer said this was a wake-up call that more is needed to be done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"Science tells us that India and South Asia can expect more flooding events like the ones we're seeing in Kerala, as global warming continues. In the Tropics we can expect more than a 10 per cent increase in precipitation for a degree Celsius increase in temperature," she said in a statement.

Studies also show that climate change could lead to a reduction in winter rainfall in India, causing drought in the dry summer months and an increase in the monsoon season, leading to more flooding.

"These kind of events are a warning to all of us of the scale of climate crisis we are facing. The idea of more than a million people being displaced by floods is shocking, and rightly so, but if we don't act to reduce our emissions then these kinds of disasters will become more frequent. 

"It also shows how climate change is having a disproportionate impact on the world's poorest people, which is why we need to see greater support to help the most vulnerable cope with emergencies of this nature," Kramer said.

Christian Aid has launched an appeal for those affected by Kerala's floods, and is responding with life-saving assistance for people who have lost their homes.

The appeal will help the charity target some of the southern Indian state's poorest and most vulnerable villages.

Households will receive assistance with safe drinking water, sanitation supplies, mosquito nets, hygiene essentials such as soap and shelter materials, including tarpaulin, rope and blankets.

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