The paper, which analyzed heatwave incidents in the country from 1971-2019, stated 706 such incidents took place in this period.
The research paper was authored by M. Rajeevan, a secretary in the Union Ministry of Earth Sciences, along with scientists Kamaljit Ray, SS Ray, RK Giri and AP Dimri. KamaljitRay is the lead author of the paper, which was published earlier this year.
According to the study, extreme weather events (EWE) led to the deaths of 141,308 people since 1971. Of these, 17,362 people were killed due to the heatwave which is classified as a EWE, the study said. This is 12% of the total deaths due to EWEs in the last 50 years.
The study assumes significance as it comes in the backdrop of heat waves that swept parts of the northern hemisphere, including the United States and Canada.
In India, the northern plains, saw temperatures soar above 40 degrees Celsius. An intense heatwave was felt in the hills as well.
Earth Sciences Minister Harsh Vardhan said latest studies showed a rising temperatures as well as the onset of heatwaves in many parts of the country in recent years. One of the reasons for the rise of heatwaves is global warming associated with the increased greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, methane, among others, in the Earth’s atmosphere.
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