With very hot summer, very cold winter, extreme rainfall, and cyclones, 2019 for India was a year of extreme climates. According to a report by India Meteorological Department(IMD), the country witnessed temperatures 0.36°C higher than the average, making 2019 the seventh warmest year since 1901.
The weather summary titled the ‘Statement on Climate of India during 2019’ was released by the IMD on Monday, January 6. The report also stated that 2010-2019 was the warmest recorded decade.
However, the increased temperature is substantially lower than the highest in 2016, at 0.71°C above average.
Furthermore, the report stated that the country witnessed numerous high impact weather events like extremely heavy rainfall, heat and cold waves, snowfall, and thunderstorm among others. With 650 lives lost, Bihar was the worst hit due to heavy rain and floods, heatwave, lightning, thunderstorm and hailstorm.
Heavy rain and flood-related events alone claimed over 850 lives during the pre-monsoon, monsoon & post-monsoon seasons. While 306 people died in Bihar alone, 136 from Maharashtra, 107 from Uttar Pradesh, 88 from Kerala, 80 from Rajasthan and 43 from Karnataka lost their lives.
In addition, while heatwave conditions claimed about 350 lives, lighting and thunderstorm claimed over 380 lives. 33 lives were lost in snowfall and avalanche related incidents in Jammu and Kashmir and 18 in Leh. Cold wave resulted in the death of 28 people in Uttar Pradesh.
The IMD report also stated eight cyclones formed over the northern Indian Ocean in 2019. For the second time in 117 years, Arabian Sea saw intense and frequent cyclones. Five cyclones – Vayu, Hikka, Kyarr, Maha and Pavan – originated in the Arabian Sea.
“The impact of global warming on India is unmistakable. It is also leading to weather extremes, which were quite in evidence in 2019,” IMD head Mrityunjay Mohapatra was quoted in The Times Of India.
Also Read: 1900 Deaths, Over 3 Million Displaced In North India Due To Floods: Global Climate Report